Burger Buns, My Way

Last weekend it was 20°, this weekend it’s snowing.  All part and parcel to the Canadian spring and making me wish for summer that much more.  It’s not a blizzard, but it’s enough for me want to stay inside and make my own piece of summer.

What’s more summery than hamburgers?  Slabs of barbecued meat covered in ketchup, cheese, lettuce, (and for people other than me) pickles.  But without a bun, burgers aren’t much more than mini-meatloaves.

These buns are a bit more nutritious than most – full of fibre from the addition of ground flax and wheat bran (if I worked it out right, there’s about 4g of fibre per bun) – and they’re the perfect bun for turkey burgers (I’ll post that recipe tomorrow after I make them).

Burger Buns

Makes 12 “doughnut sized” buns

1 1/2 Tbsp instant yeast

1 3/4 cups luke warm water

2 Tbsp sugar

2 Tbsp olive oil

475g – 500g (4 3/4 to 5 cups) all purpose or bread flour

25g (1/2 cup) wheat bran*

20g (2 Tbsp) ground flax meal

1 tsp salt

2 Tbsp cornmeal

In a large bowl (or stand mixer bowl) stir together the yeast, sugar and water.  Let sit for 15-20 minutes, or until it’s nice and foamy.

In a separate bowl, stir together the salt, flour, bran and flax.

Using a fork, whisk in the olive oil.  Dump in the flour mixture and stir until a shaggy dough forms.  Using the dough hook of your stand mixer, knead the dough for 5 or 6 minutes, until it is smooth, but still a little bit tacky.  Knead the dough by hand for a minute or two on a floured counter until it is smooth.  If you don’t have a stand mixer, knead the dough by hand for 10-15 minutes until it is smooth.

Set the dough in a large oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap.  Let the dough rise for about 2 hours, or until it has more than doubled in size.

Punch the dough down and divide into 12 equal pieces.  Sprinkle the corn meal into a 9×13 cake tin.  Roll each piece of dough into a round and place in the cake tin.  Cover the pieces in plastic wrap and let them rise for another 45 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 450°.  Once the oven is preheated, turn it down to 375° and put the buns in.  Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the tops have just browned and the buns sound hollow when you tap on them.

Let them cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then remove them to a rack to cool completely – or before they’re completely cooled, cut one open, slather it in butter and eat.

*You can omit the wheat bran if you use whole wheat flour instead.  You’ll just have to use an additional 1/2 cup.

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