I love to prepare special dinners at home, specially on weekends...and I don't mind spending the whole afternoon cooking while others are going out. When you get pretty damn good results and you can stuff your face with a delicious homemade burger it's all worth it.
I'm not a strict vegan but you will never see me eating a burger at certain fast food restaurant, thanks but no thanks! Homemade = better.
One thing I've been searching with zero success all these years is a good and dairy-free burger bun: the bakeries in my city make them using non-organic butter and/or other fats (aka junk) that my body doesn't really need...plus the ones you can find on the supermarket shelves are quite tasteless and packed with additives, super refined oils...etc, etc.
We all know that the taste of homemade bread (oh! and the smell!), the sense of accomplishment when you take your freshly baked bread out of the oven and how de-stressing is to punch the dough are priceless. So why don't we make our own burger buns at home?...and now that the oven is on, let's make some sweet potato fries and potato chips! Hell yes!
I had such a delicious 'fast-food'-inspired dinner. These homemade burger buns are hands down one of the best breads I've ever baked; they are incredibly tender (and I do mean tender), they don't take up a lot of hours to leaven and the tase is so much better than any store-bought burger buns.
This recipe yields four big buns (go big or go home) which have the perfect size for a main dish, but you can divide the dough into five equal parts so the buns will be smaller.
They make a great sandwich bread too and taste really good with something sweet like strawberry jam or chocolate spread for breakfast. Though I'd suggest to make the smaller version (dividing the dough into 5 or 6 buns) in this case.
By the way, have you seen the short video I published on Instagram and Facebook? If you did, you already know how hard I punched that dough! Kneading bread at home is a great workout for the arms! :-p
Receta en español en la web de El Granero Integral!
(yield: 4 big buns)
1 cup lukewarm water.
1 1/2 tbsp molasses.
2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast.
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour.
1 1/2 cups white spelt flour.
1 tsp salt.
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil.
Black sesame seeds, to sprinkle on top.
In a small bowl stir together water, molasses and dry yeast. Let it sit for 5 minutes, until the yeast activates and small bubbles appear on the surface.
Mix together flours and salt in a large bowl using a hand whisk.
Transfer the flour mixture to the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Add in yeast mixture and olive oil. Start mixing on low speed and increase the speed a few seconds later. Mix until a soft ball of dough forms, around 6 minutes.
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead by hand. Working the dough for 10 minutes approximately will be enough if you aerate the dough well: push it down, stretch it and fold the top half back towards you. Repeat the process and sprinkle the dough with more whole wheat flour if it's too sticky; it should be more humid than the average bread dough but shouldn't stick too much to your fingers and/or the working surface.
Shape the dough into a ball, transfer back to the bowl and cover well with plastic wrap. Let it rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 hours, until the dough is puffy and doubled in size.
After this first rise, divide the dough into 4 equal portions and shape them into round burger buns; tap them gently to deflate the dough.
Place the buns on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and remember to leave enough space between them. They will puff up again after the second rise so it is very important to leave that space.
Loosely cover the baking sheet with plastic wrap (or a dump cloth) and let it rest for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400º F (200ºC) after the first 15 minutes have passed (approximately).
Uncover the baking sheet, brush the tops of the buns with a bit of vegan milk and sprinkle with the black sesame seeds. Bake for 15 minutes, until they look golden on top and sound hollow when you gently tap the bottoms with your knuckles.
Let cool on a wire rack.
To store the buns and make them stay fresh and tender for a longer time I recommend to wrap them in plastic wrap once they are completely cool and also place them inside an airtight container.