English muffins

 These are one of our biggest accomplishments. We don't have to carry bread and bagels any more! This recipe was first featured in the Canoe Camping with Kids FAQ, but we've moved it here to a page of its own. Remember, practice at home first. Start by making them in your kitchen using your own stove or electric frying pan, then make the dough inside and go outside to cook on whatever stove you take camping, then finally try the all-outdoors version.

We assume you already know how to make bread dough, eg know when it's kneaded enough.

Mix these together in a mug and leave about 5 minutes. In a pot, mix with 1.5 cups flour and beat for 2-3 minutes. Stir in another 1.5 cups flour, and knead on a smooth clean surface for about 8 minutes. I know, I know, where are you going to get a smooth clean surface? We've heard paddle blades and canoe bottoms recommended, but we take a piece of a "flexible flyer" (for the snow-deprived, that's a thin flexible piece of smooth plastic you can ride down a snow-covered hill on -- it's the green surface in the pictures.) It takes up very little room in the pack, is great for the muffins, and as a general countertop for stacking clean wet dishes and so on.

Let rise 1 hour in a big lump. Roll to English-muffin-thickness (about as thick as my thumb or a bit more.) Cut out, either with a mug for round muffins or into squares or rectangles with a dull knife (much easier since there's no re-rolling scraps, and square muffins taste as good as round ones) and put them on a plate with cornmeal on it. Cover with a damp teatowel and let rise another hour.

Sprinkle cornmeal over the top, and fry in a dry pan over medium (ha!) heat; 10 minutes on one side and 5-10 on the other. If you scorch the cornmeal, throw it in the fireplace and replace it with fresh, and lower the heat. Eat the first few muffins so you can see how you are doing.

Typically we start the muffins as we start dinner, and get around to cooking them after dinner. The whole process takes between two and three hours. Then we have muffins for the next day's breakfast and lunch.

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