Crumpets with honey butter

What a busy time! My many months of job searching have paid off as I've got a new job with Spring Food + Wine. It's pretty wonderful to be part of Brisbane's ever-growing and increasingly impressive food scene. Since I work right in the city and feel all grown up, here's a nostalgic breakfast post… 

Crumpets were a bit of a weekend breakfast treat when I was growing up. They were always savoured, too, but over the last few years, the crumpets we've bought in the supermarket have gone mouldy so quickly! It's disappointing, but last weekend, (before a trip to the zoo) I woke up to find that Mum and Dad had made crumpets! I whipped up the honey butter to accompany them, and we all enjoyed the deliciously crispy, holey, buttery crumpets. As my Mum said, you really cannot have enough honey butter on them! This recipe makes at least 16 crumpets, so there will be plenty there for you to reheat for weekday breakfasts too.

What you'll need:
750ml milk
7g (or 1 sachet) of dried yeast
1 teaspoon caster sugar
500g plain flour
1 teaspoon salt
30g butter, melted
You'll also need egg rings and extra melted butter to grease

Honey butter:
200g butter, softened
200g honey

What to do:
Warm the milk in the microwave for 30-60 seconds to bring it to (roughly) body temperature. (Beware that hot milk will kill your yeast!) Place yeast in a small bowl and gently stir in half a cup of the warm milk. Set yeast aside somewhere warm and allow it five minutes to foam up.

Meanwhile, combine the flour, salt and sugar in a big bowl. Make a well in the centre and pour in the butter, remaining milk and the yeast mixture. Stir this mixture well until it has combined. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and set aside in a warm, sunny place for 60-90 minutes or until mixture has doubled in size. It should be bubbly and springy to touch, like a lovely big cloud.

To make the honey butter:
Use an electric mixer to beat together the softened butter and honey until smooth and fluffy. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until required.

To cook crumpets:
Heat a large frying pan over medium-low heat, and brush the pan and egg rings with melted butter. When the pan is hot, place a big spoonful of crumpet mixture into each egg ring and spread it out and/or add more mixture if needed. (The crumpets will rise so don't fill them up too much.) When the crumpets' bubbles burst, it's time flip them over and cook until golden on the other side. Remove cooked crumpets and place on a cooling rack. Enjoy warm with honey butter!

NOTE: Crumpets and butter will keep in the fridge for 1-2 weeks… if they last that long! To reheat crumpets, cut them in half (sideways) and pop in the toaster for 2-3 minutes.