English Muffins with Roasted Beetroot, Balsamic Onions & Feta
After a busy work week a leisurely weekend breakfast is a welcome treat, whether at home or out at cafes with friends. I conjure these breakfasts up in my mind through the week, oddly after doing exercise the mind instantly roams towards food….hmmm what would I like to eat, what should I really eat, what is there to eat when I get home? The ‘like’ usually wins every time, in this case it was a rather healthy breakfast over the belly pork & pickle sandwich I had the day before.
I have taken up Bikram yoga and those who know me will smile and say “that’s nice Al”, knowing what that means, a new sport or exercise I have picked up which I will flog to death until my attention is diverted somewhere else. When I find something new I fall in love with it, become a little fanatical about it, believe everyone else should love it, convincing them they should join me in my new pursuit. Sometimes they do, often to find I have already moved onto my next fad.
In this case, Bikram yoga, I thought might actually flog me to death. A hot room in mid winter sounded appealing, a tropical oasis to warm the body was more appealing than going to the pool or a for a jog in temperatures of 5 Celsius. I thought I was pretty fit until I nearly passed out 20 minutes into the class. The veterans in the class smiled, nodded knowingly, “it will get better the more you practise they said, your doing great”. I was feeling nauseous at this stage and felt like poking their eyes out, why would I even try again if it was this bad? Stubborn by nature saw me back there two days later, no way a hot room was going to beat me and thankfully I didn’t faint the second time but the jury is still out, this fad may have the shortest life span yet.
Enough of excise, here’s the recipe. Although I did make my own muffins you can easily buy them or use your favourite bread instead. I would suggest if making your own muffins, make the dough the night before and leave in the fridge overnight to rise, saving time in the morning. You don’t want breakfast to turn into lunch!
2 brown onions, peeled and sliced thinly into rings
2 small beetroot, topped & tailed, peeled
2 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar
150g Feta Cheese
Pre heat oven to 180C.
Cut the peeled beetroot into wedges, approx 8 per beetroot.
Place the beetroot in a roasting tin with a tablespoon of olive oil and some rock salt to season, toss together to coat the beetroot.
Roast in the oven for 40 minutes. Prepare the onions while beetroot is roasting.
In a frying pan over a medium heat add a tablespoon of olive oil and the sliced onions.
Sauté for 15 minutes until onions are opaque and soft.
Add the balsamic vinegar and cook for a further 5 minutes.
To serve, toast the muffins and pile on the warm onions, beetroot and crumble feta over the top
Here’s the English muffin recipe, they really are easy and fun to watch turning into shape in the frying pan!
1/2 cup warm milk
1/2 cup warm water
1 tablespoons white sugar
1tsp package active dry yeast
2.5 cups high grade flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
Warm the milk and water to a luke warm temperature.
Add the sugar, stirring until dissolved.
Sprinkle the yeast on top of the milk and water and stand until it begins to bubble.
In a large bowl, add the milk & yeast mixture and 1 cup of flour.
Beat until smooth. Add salt and rest of flour, or enough to make a soft dough.
Knead for 5 minutes and divide into 8 and roll into smooth balls.
Sprinkle waxed paper with cornmeal and place the dough balls on this to rise. Dust tops of muffins with cornmeal also.
Cover with a plastic bag or wrap and let rise till doubled in size.
Heat a cast iron frying pan over a low heat and cook. muffins for about 6-8 minutes on each side. They will double again in size in the pan and should be golden brown on the first side before you flip it to cook the second side.