Recipe Review: Finding the Perfect Crumpet Recipe, Part 1

Posted in Breads, Recipes

Living in Bavaria means occasionally missing certain British products. Crumpets are one of them.

These crumpets are something I’d pick up about once a month and though they’re not an essential part of my weekend, they’d be a welcome treat. Hot from the grill, toasted til they were crisp on both the top and bottom but fluffy in the middle. Warburtons are my favourite. Germany doesn’t have anything like a good British crumpet, neither in texture nor flavour and I (daftly) thought; “I can do that! How hard can it be?”

Equipment

The first problem: I couldn’t get my hands on any crumpet rings locally. So I bought some off brand, multi-purpose ‘English Muffin Crumpet’ rings on Amazon.de and gave it a go… What a failure! No matter how much oil or butter I coated the inside of the ring with, the crumpets would just not release. Which is why you’ll not find any pictures for the first recipe I’m reviewing below…

Crumpets made from a Paul Hollywood recipe in Lakeland Crumpet Rings | eatexploreetc.com

Tip Number One – before you even start, source some proper crumpet rings. You’ll save yourself frustration and crumpet-induced misery. I would heartily recommend these from Lakeland. And no, this isn’t a sponsored post! I found they needed just a little oil and I had no issues in getting the crumpets out. They do deliver worldwide, though only accept UK cards online. Click here for details.

Waitrose Recipe

I first found this recipe for crumpets in the April 2016 edition of Waitrose Food magazine. Whilst I still have access to it through the Waitrose Food app on my tablet, it’s also handily available online here. Unfortunately due to some epic crumpet ring failure, I don’t have any pictures to share. They wouldn’t have done the recipe justice.

Of the three recipes I tested, this one gave the batter the longest rising period. It was simple to put together and thanks to that lengthy 2 – 4 hour rise, the crumpets developed a lovely flavour. For me though, the texture wasn’t quite right. Whilst it was light and fluffy, I felt there wasn’t enough gluten development as the crumpet didn’t have that characteristically elastic texture I was looking for. It’s not a bad recipe, it’s just not quite there for what I want.

Result: Runner Up | Link

Jamie Oliver Recipe

This time, I was properly armed with some decent crumpet rings. For my second crumpet trial I opted for a Jamie Oliver recipe. I’d been quite impressed by my success with his naan bread and felt like it’d be worthwhile giving the crumpet recipe a try…

Well I really should have listened to my first reaction on reading the recipe, which was to give it a massive side-eye bordering on are-you-kidding-me? face. It’s a shame really.

Crumpets made from a Jamie Oliver recipe | eatexploreetc.com

The recipe gives only a 45 minute rising period, which just doesn’t allow for decent flavour development. Like with the Waitrose recipe, there’s no working of the batter and given the short maturation period, I felt the texture wasn’t even as good as the Waitrose crumpets.

Finally, and I really don’t know why I followed this one, the recipe calls for the pan to be on a “medium-high heat” and to cook for “five minutes”.  I knew this one wouldn’t work before I even put the batter in the pan but for the sake of giving the recipe a proper test, I had to. What did I get? Blackened burnt bases with raw, unflippable tops.

For the pictures you see above, I reduced the heat to a medium-low and cooked the crumpets for around 12 minutes before flipping them over. Whilst the insides were light and fluffy, they lacked a significantly holey interior, proper crumpet flavour and that important elastic texture.

Result: Last Place | Link

Discover who the winner is over at: Finding the Perfect Crumpet Recipe, Part 2

21st April, 2017
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