First of all, it's Friday the 13th and I'm a little miffed that Blogger has deleted over 70 comments for my Cuisinart Immersion Blender giveaway!!
I tried to re-post your comments and Blogger won't let me.
So, for TODAY, you can enter TWICE!
Back to our regularly scheduled post....
My all time favorite hamburger bun is whole wheat. This one pictured is a very, very close runner up. Albertson's (now known as Fresh Market...still can't get the hang of the new name..) has some yummy French bread hamburger buns and one day...
they were out.
As in, "No, we don't have any, and are not making any more today."
Then a thought crossed my mind, "Why don't YOU make your own?"
A true French bread recipe has simple ingredients: yeast, water, salt, and oil. I choose to add a wee bit of sugar to assist the yeast and give this bread some of its golden brown color.
Let's have a go, shall we?
All purpose, unbleached bread flour (I love to use Lehi Roller Mill's Turkey flour), active dry yeast, Real Salt, and some sugar are thrown into the bowl.
Give it a quick stir.
Stick your finger into some warm water. If it feels warm, it's too warm. If it feels cool, it's too cool. If you can't feel any temperature difference, it's just right!
A real Goldilocks moment, huh?
Add some oil to the water. I like to use canola oil. Dump this into your flour mix.
Give it a mix, making sure to scrape the bottom. Allow it to sit for 15 minutes.
This will give your flour some time to absorb the liquids and the yeast to create some lovely little bubbles...
Add the rest of your flour, a cup at a time, till it looks like this...
Is it ready?
Give it a few more minutes of kneading and it will look like this!
Touch the dough lightly. It should feel smooth, wet, and tacky. Not sticky. No dough should stick to your fingers.
Is it ready?
I love my bowl scraper. Here is is in action, cleaning the dough hook and scraping down the sides:
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rise till double. Here in Utah, that only takes 30 minutes. It may take up to an hour, depending on where you live.
Divide the dough into 8 pieces. If you have a scale, each piece will be about 4 ounces.
Pull up the "corners" of the dough and tuck them into a smooth ball.
Place on a lightly greased baking sheet, or use a parchment or Silpat sheet. Lightly grease the tops and cover with plastic wrap, rise till double, around 30 minutes or up to an hour.
To get a crispy crust, put an old pan in the bottom of your oven. Turn the oven to 400ºF.
Just before baking, slightly smoosh the buns to 1"
Find a serrated knife (this is a tomato knife) and make a quick 1/4" deep slash.
Throw a cup of hot water into the old pan in the bottom of the oven, put the buns in, and quickly shut the door.
Wait 30 seconds, then quickly spritz the middle of the oven with water. Shut the oven door.
Do this two more times, then turn the oven temperature down to 375ºF.
The combo of high heat and water will create a crispy, chewy outer crust.
You must remember to turn your oven down or they will bake too quickly!
In 15 or so minutes, this is what you will have...
I made Juicy Homemade Hamburger Patties with melted cheese, and made a Classic Burger Sauce which paired fabulously with these buns that have a tender crumb and slightly chewy crust!
French Bread Hamburger Buns
(4x6 recipe download) (full page printable recipe)