I adore great packaging, I am easily lured towards a product with a stylish design. Recently I had the opportunity to acquire these marvellous tiny tea tins. Just the size of a matchbox! I fell for them instantly.

But back to the crumpets..

I had been meaning to try crumpets for ages but always shrugged it off as too time-consuming. But a month ago I pulled my socks up and went ahead with it. I baked crumpets on two consecutive weekends.

I made some strawberry butter to serve with the crumpets but spooning chocolate or jam will work just as fine.

The taste is quite interesting, kind of eggy, even though there are no eggs. I only got a bite from the first batch so naturally I had to make these again.

I used a simple recipe found in many books and cooking programmes.

175ml whole milk
175g plain flour
7g fresh yeast
1/4 tsp fine sea salt
1 tsp caster sugar
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
75ml warm water

Warm the milk. Add the sugar and yeast into the milk. Let stand until frothy.
Sift flour into a bowl and add salt. Make a well in the centre and add the milk mixture. Beat well until the batter is thick and elastic. Cover and let rise in a warm place for about an hour.

Mix soda with warm water. Pour into the batter and beat diligently for a good few minutes. Cover and set aside for half an hour.

Heat a pan over low heat. Butter the insides of crumpet rings or 8cm pastry rings and place into the frying pan to heat them. Drop about two big spoonfuls of batter into each ring, the batter should come 1.5cm up the sides of the rings. Cook until lots of tiny bubbles appear on the surface and burst, leaving holes. Carefully lift the rings and flip the crumpets over. Cook for a minute or two until golden.

To make strawberry butter you will need equal quantities of butter and fresh strawberries, plus some icing sugar to taste. The easiest way is to cube the butter and dice the strawberries, throw them into a food processor and whiz away. Add some icing sugar and whiz until homogeneous.

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