Food - Drink
The British Ex-Pat Who Invented English Muffins On American Soil
By CATHERINE WOMACK
What Americans know as “English muffins” are just called “muffins” in the U.K., which were sold on the street by “muffin men” in the 18th and 19th centuries. The classic English muffin is much denser than those sold in the U.S., and it’s thanks to one Englishman that we have the unique version of English muffins that Americans love today.
English ex-pat and baker Samuel Bath Thomas brought his version of the English muffin to the United States when he opened his New York bakery in 1880. While his recipe was inspired by the muffins made in England, his signature “nooks and crannies” were entirely unique, and the product, originally called “toaster crumpets,” caught on.
By 1902, the name had shifted to “English muffins,” and they had made their mark on culinary history, inspiring dishes like eggs Benedict. Even today, no brand quite matches Thomas’ reputation or its muffins’ distinct texture, as the secret of Thomas’ famous “nooks and crannies” remains closely guarded, per New York Times.