Having a quiet cup of coffee with a griddled buckwheat muffin dripping with Greek honey and getting 50 pages into a new book in the middle of the day isn't something I get to do very often. But hey, you only live once, right?
Griddled Buckwheat Muffins
from Dan Lepard's The Handmade Loaf
Makes 5 big muffins
100g boiling water
75g toasted buckwheat (I buy mine toasted, but if you can't get the toasted stuff, just pop it in a dry frying pan over medium heat and toast them for a couple of minutes, stirring, until you start to smell them.)
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
350g bread flour
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
200g water at 20 degrees C
3/4 teaspoon fresh yeast, crumbled
25g melted butter
Put the buckwheat in a small bowl and pour the boiling water over the buckwheat, the add the cider vinegar and stir. Leave for 5 minutes for the buckwheat to swell and absorb the water.
Combine the flour and salt in a large bowl. In another bowl, stir the buckwheat with the water and the yeast, then add this to the flour. Mix the dough until it comes together. Pour over the warm melted butter and work it evenly into the dough. Cover and leave to rest for 10 minutes.
Rub about 1 teaspoon of olive oil onto a work surface and lightly knead the dough on the oiled surface for about 10 seconds. Form it into a ball, put the dough into a clean bowl that has been lightly rubbed with oil, cover and leave for 10 minutes. Knead the dough on the oiled surface for another 10 seconds. Form it into a ball and put it back into the bowl. Cover it and leave for 1 hour in a warm place.
Lightly flour a work surface, then roll the dough out until it is 2cm thick. Using a 10cm round cutter, cut discs from the dough and lay them on a flour-dusted tea towel. Continue with the remainder of the dough, re-rolling any scraps and cutting more to finish. Cover the muffins with a cloth and leave in a warm place for 45 minutes to rise.
Take a large frying pan with a tight-fitting lid, sprinkle it with a little flour and, using a spatula, gently transfer 2 or 3 of the muffins to the pan. They will puff up when cooking so don't over-crowd the pan. Cover the pan and cook over a gentle heat for 5 minutes. Check the bottoms of the muffins to make sure they aren't browning too quickly. You want them to cook for 5 minutes each side without getting too much colour. Flip them over and cook on the other side for 5 minutes. Remove them to a wire rack to cool.