This recipe uses a tiny amount of yeast over a long period of time to make light fluffy muffins with a thick chewy crust. I like to let them char a little on the outside for even more flavor, but I’m a baker and we tend to like burnt bread!
I call them breakfast muffins because if you follow this schedule they’ll be ready to eat at 9am on Sunday. If you can’t get stoneground wheat, all purpose flour is an ok substitute.
This is a preferment that gives more flavor to the finished muffins.
Stoneground wheat flour 100g | 100%
Water at room temp 100g | 100%
Dried yeast 2g | 2%
Saturday 12pm Mix the dried yeast through the flour then add the water and mix well. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, cover and leave for four hours.
Stoneground wheat flour 400g | 100%
Very hot water from the tap 125g | 31%
Cold milk 125g | 31%
Poolish 200g | 50%
Butter 20g | 5%
Salt 10g | 2% (2% of total flour in the recipe)
Sugar 25g | 5%
Note: there is no extra yeast added to the dough, the activity from the tiny amount in the poolish is enough to raise the dough.
Saturday 4pm Mix the hot water with the cold milk, combine with the rest of ingredients in a stand mixer or by hand. In a stand mixer mix for one minute on low speed and three minutes on fast (number 4 or 5 on a kitchen aid). If mixing by hand, combine the ingredients to a shaggy mass then kneed on a work top for 3 or 4 minutes until you have stretchy dough, return to the bowl and cover with plastic.
Saturday 4:45pm Using wet hands reach into the bowl and grab one side of the dough, gently stretch this up and fold it over on itself. Repeat this three or four times, rotating the bowl slightly each time. This stretch and fold action helps develop the dough, build gluten strength and equalise the dough temperature.
Saturday 5:15pm Repeat the stretch and fold action.
Saturday 6:00pm Repeat the stretch and fold; by this time the dough will be light and bubbly and very stretchy. Wrap the bowl well in plastic and store in the coolest part of the fridge. This does two things; it allows the dough to continue slowly fermenting and building more flavor, and it means the dough is ready to shape on Sunday morning.
Sunday 7:00am Yes it’s early but this will take ten minutes then you can go back to bed. Tip the dough onto the work surface and scale to 110g, you should get eight muffins from the recipe. Shape them as best you can into flattish balls and lay them to rest on a tea towel covered with cornmeal/polenta or rice flour, cover loosely with another towel and go back to bed.
Sunday 9:00am The muffins are ready to bake; heat a heavy bottomed pan over a medium heat and add three or four muffins – don’t overcrowd the pan. Turn them 180 degrees after three mins, after five minutes flip them over and keep cooking for five more minutes, rotating halfway.
Repeat with the remaining muffins.