I rarely buy crumpets. It’s not because I don’t like them. But two things. One is that they have a relatively short shelf life and two, they tend to give me indigestion. Ok, three things.. I also tend to confit them in butter. Are you familiar with those golden, buttery trails snaking their way down your palms, over your wrists and down your arm? Crumpets and butter to me are like cheese and crackers, coffee and cake, chips and sauce… the perfect pairing. Since first making these, I don’t buy packet crumpets anymore because they just can’t compare to home made! I don’t have anything against packets or kitchen shortcuts.. but this recipe is even worth the three waiting times. Did that make sense? “Resting” times I mean. Because of the resting times, they take a bit longer than a pancake brekky or brunch. However, like Hollandaise sauce made from scratch, the reward is in the eating!! And while you’re waiting for the yeast to do its thing, you can prepare the absolutely delish and simple ‘Ginger Cheesecake’ accompaniment. I love savoury crumpets.. as I said with butter.. and especially butter and vegemite. But this lovely dessert-style spread, made from 80% reduced fat cream cheese takes an ordinary crumpet to extraordinary heights. Use as little or as much as you like and consider having friends or family over for brunch or breakfast.. and WoW them with your homemade crumpets!
Recipe yields between 7 and 10 crumpets approximately. They are more filling than store-bought crumpets.
-2 cups of plain flour
-2 x 7g sachets of dried yeast
-1 heaped teaspoon caster sugar
-1 & 1/4 cups of warm milk
-1/4 teaspoon baking powder
-1 tablespoon of water
-Coconut oil for the frypan (or oil spray)
Ginger Cheesecake Cream
-4 heaped tablespoons (or 150grams) of 80% less fat Philadelphia brand cream cheese
-1.5 teaspoons of Queen’s brand Vanilla Dusting sugar (available where you buy food colouring, essences and extracts)
-3 teaspoons rice malt syrup (or 2 teaspoons caster sugar)
-20 grams of uncrystallised ginger (or ‘naked ginger’), chopped finely (can be found near the dried fruit and nuts for baking in the supermarket)
-This recipe requires 3 resting periods. Though the crumpets and topping are very easy to make, you and anyone you’re feeding needs to be patient. Plan to eat these 90 to 120 minutes after you begin the process. But like Hollandaise sauce made from scratch, the reward is in the eating!
-First you want to get your yeast alive and kicking, so warm half a cup of milk from the milk allowance you have in this recipe. Be careful when doing this because it’s so easy to overheat milk in a microwave. If the milk isn’t warm enough, it won’t do what you want it to do.. but by the same token, you’re likely to kill it if your milk is hot. Sometimes if it is a little hot, just add a few splashes of cold milk to get it to lukewarm temperature.
-Add the dried yeast sachets to your lukewarm milk, aswell as the caster sugar, mix well so the yeast can dissolve, cover with plastic wrap and a tea towel (I always do two layers of wrap) and set aside somewhere for 15 minutes away from any draughts. I usually wrap it up loosely in old sheets or quilt covers too. Same way my mother did it.
-In a medium to large bowl, sift the plain flour and salt and make a well in the centre.
-In a smaller bowl, whisk the remainder of your milk and the egg
-When the yeast mixture is ready (after 15 minutes), add it into the flour mixture
-Mix batter until relatively smooth
-Cover again with plastic wrap, tea towels and whatever else you’d like to keep it warm
-Allow to rest and rise for an hour
-The mixture should double in volume and have lots of little bubbles on top
-Mix 1 tablespoon of water with 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder and then mix it through the crumpet batter
-Cover and rest for 10 minutes
-During the final resting period, make your Ginger Cheesecake topping/cream
-Finely chop uncrystallised ginger (about 6 pieces.. being 20 grams)
-In a bowl, mix finely chopped ginger with cream cheese and the two sugars, then cover and refrigerate
-Put a little oil in a pan and make your crumpets in batches. I did 3 at a time, but maybe you might only do two.. or even one!
-The first side needs to cook for about 5 minutes (check the bases once or twice to see they’re not burning.. or whether you need to adjust your heat)
-The second side only need about 30 to 60 seconds
-Usually bubbles should surface when the crumpet batter is in the pan, but don’t worry if they look more like really fat pikelets. The bubbles are inside, so when you cut them open, they will look like genuine crumpets.. but taste much better in my opinion -Serve crumpets with butter and any topping you like..(drizzlings of golden syrup and butter for example) but especially the Ginger Cheesecake cream. If you can, serve it in a nice little self serve pot or mini ramekin or even shot glass because it shares star billing alongside the crumpets for sure!