Last week, people were posting a variety of big, juicy, delicious burgers online. My husband looked through these and instantly got a craving for one! He asked me if I was willing to make one or get a take out. Once and a while, I don’t mind a good burger. I thought, “Well, I could try ordering one or make my own.” Every good burger starts with a good bun. There are variety of buns available in grocery stores. The amount of choices can be overwhelming. I decided to make my own instead. I have searched my cookbooks and online for simple and easy recipes. I found an online blog called “The Clever Carrot,” which had a simple recipe I liked. Unfortunately, it calls for bread flour and active yeast, which I didn’t have on hand, so I used regular unbleached, all purpose flour and instant yeast. I also made a mistake by not reading the procedure all the way. The recipe used two eggs, one for making the buns, and one for brushing the tops. I accidentally added both of them to the mix. I corrected my mistake by adding an additional 1/3 cup to the 1/2 cup flour while eyeing the dough, not adding too much. The dough will be sticky and have a shaggy appearance. That means it’s ready.
To make this bun, you will need:
- 1 cup warm water
- 3 tbs warm milk
- 2 tsp instant yeast
- 2.5 tbs sugar
- 3 large eggs (two for recipe, one for brushing)
- 3.5 cups all purpose flour (extra .33 if needed)
- 1.5 tsp salt
- 2.5 tbs unsalted butter, softened
- sesame seeds (personal preference)
Put 3.5 cups of flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a stand mixer. Use your hand and gently mix the ingredients. Next, add the softened butter, two beaten eggs, water, and milk. Be sure that your water and milk are between 105 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Use a dough hook to mix all ingredients. Run the mixer on medium for around 8 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl to make sure everything is well mixed.
Scrape the dough out with a plastic bench scraper on a lightly floured surface. Sprinkle another thin layer of flour on the top surface of the dough if too sticky. Form dough onto a ball. Put the dough back in the mixing bowl and cover it with a damp towel. Let the dough rise in a warm place for 1 to 2 hours. I used my oven for this step. Put the bowl in the oven and turn the oven light on. This process took me 1.5 hours. Once dough is risen, lightly pinch the dough with your hand to deflate it. Place the dough on a lightly floured surface. Use a floured plastic bench scraper cut the dough into 10 equal sized pieces. If you have a kitchen scale, you can use that.
When I made mine, I found the buns to be rather large when making 8. Next time, I’ll make more.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. To shape the dough into balls, gently flatten each piece of dough like a pancake. Gather the ends and pinch the dough to seal in the center. Flip the dough over, cup the surface with you palm, and roll into a ball. Transfer the balls to the parchment lined baking sheet in few inches a part. Cover it with lightly oiled plastic wrap and a damp towel. Put it back in the oven to rest for another hour.
Before turning the oven on, make sure your dough is out of the oven, unless you have double oven. Set the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Once dough is rested, you will see that they are puffy and lightly risen.
To make the egg wash, beat the remaining egg with a splash of water, and gently brush each dough with egg wash. At this point, you can add sesame seeds or any other seeds of your choice to top your rolls.
Place a metal baking dish on the preheated oven floor with .5 cup of water before your dough goes in. Water creates steam to keep the bun nice and moist.
Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. During this for around every 5 minutes, I turned the tray so it bakes evenly. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Sesame seeds aren’t the only topping you can use. There are many different options to choose from like onion seed, poppy seed. Be creative!