The history of the crumpet is said to have begun during the Anglo-Saxon period when the etymology of its name first appeared. The words ‘crompid cake’ appeared in John Wycliffe’s translation of the Bible in 1382: “a cake of a loaf, a crusted cake spreynde with oyle, a crompid cake”. ‘Crompid cake’ is said to be the precursor of the modern term, says the Oxford Reference.
The ‘Crompid cake’ of the Anglo-Saxons, however, had little resemblance to the crumpets of today. It is believed to be a “thin cake cooked on a hot girdle so that the edges curled up”, says John Ayto in An A to Z of Food and Drink. The word ‘crompid’ goes back to Old English word ‘crump’ which means ‘bent’ or ‘crooked’, and is related to the modern English word ‘crumple’.
An English housekeeper, Elizabeth Raffald, is credited to be the author of the first printed recipe for crumpet in 1769. Raffald is the author of the cookery book, The Experienced English Housekeeper, which has around 900 recipes, including a recipe for crumpet.
In an instalment of Timeout’s Made in London series, a visit to Warburtons’ factory in Enfield, North London, shows how crumpets are made in one of Europe’s largest bakeries. The signature holes of a crumpet are actually caused by fermentation. Once the dough is made, it is put into a tank to ferment for about 20 minutes at 40 degrees Celsius. This creates bubbles on the crumpet, which would then create the holes when it is cooked on a hot-plate conveyor belt at 200 degrees Celsius for five minutes. In this way, Warburtons makes 10, 600 crumpets in an hour.
A crumpet is often mistaken as an English muffin. According to The Nibble, the crumpet and the English muffin are cousins. Their ingredients are the same, but their differences lie in their texture and their holes. A crumpet is moister compared an English muffin and it has holes on the top side instead of the inside.
To call someone especially a woman, a crumpet, means the person is sexually desirable. It is sometimes regarded as an offensive term.
On the other hand, the idiom ‘the thinking man’s/woman’s crumpet’, refers to someone who is both intelligent and attractive, hence sexually desirable.
A type of griddle cake that has a sponge-like texture. Griddle cake refers to a pancake that is cooked on a heated metal plate. The crumpet is known for its holes on its surface, which is what made this cake tastes good when the butter gets melted into the holes. It is best eaten toasted and spread with butter or jam.
Eggs, milk, water, flour, salt, and yeast