Barbecue season is upon us!
Who doesn’t love a classic hamburger with chips, fries or potato salad on a hot summer day?
Of course you can go with the quick-and-easy store-bought option for the buns and patties, but the homemade version is definitely the gourmet choice!
Sourdough hamburger buns quickly became a favourite when I started on my baking journey… They have so much more flavour, wonderful texture, and I know exactly what ingredients have gone into the food I am eating!
As with all sourdough recipes, it does take a little more planning ahead to make sure they have sufficient time to rise (and develop that nice, tangy sourdough flavour).
But, as I often say, it is all worth it for the superior quality you get by making it yourself!
If you are new to sourdough baking and don’t know how to make your own sourdough starter, check out this easy DIY tutorial for sourdough starter.
The first step in this sourdough hamburger bun recipe is to combine the sourdough starter, water, and 1/2 cup of the flour.
Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 30-60 minutes.
Next, melt the butter and slightly heat the milk to about room temperature and add to the bowl.
Add the sugar, salt, and egg. Combine well.
Mix the remaining flour a little at a time; if you are using a mixer, the dough should begin to clear the bowl when it is the right consistency.
Place in a well oiled bowl and turn over so the dough is oiled on both sides, then cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.
When the timer goes off, fold the dough into the centre from one side, then repeat with the remaining 3 sides.
Turn the dough upside down, cover it again, and allow to rise in a warm area for another 30 minutes.
Repeat this process and leave for 60 minutes.
Finally, the process is repeated one more time and another 60 minute rise time.
The dough should be a very elastic consistency at this point and smell nice and tangy.
Cut the dough into 8 equal sized pieces and roll into rounds, then squish them into roughly the diameter you would like for your hamburger buns.
Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper, leaving enough room between the bun dough to allow them to rise without sticking to each other.
At this point, I add my sesame seeds and slightly press them into the bun; I find this helps them stick better than if they are added on top of the egg wash after the buns have risen.
Cover with a tea towel and allow to rise for 60 minutes or until they have doubled in size.
Brush with egg wash; this gives the hamburger buns a beautiful, golden color when they have finished baking.
Place into the pre-heated oven at 400º F for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.
Place on a cooling rack and cover with a tea towel until cool.
I personally love to toast my hamburger buns in the oven before serving; to do this, I butter them well, then place on a baking sheet open side up – and stand and watch them the entire time they broil!
There have been too many times in my life that multi-tasking has caused burned buns… or garlic toast…
Trust me on this! The few minutes it takes them to broil is well worth keeping a diligent eye on them.
I find that broiling them, rather than grilling or placing them into a frying pan gives more even browning and retains more of the butter (because they are face up, rather than face down).
Next, add your topping of choice and enjoy!
1 cup sourdough starter
1/4 cup warm water
3 cups white flour, divided
3/4 cup warm milk
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
Egg wash (1 egg + 1/4 teaspoon water, beaten)
Combine sourdough starter, 1/2 cup flour, and water.
Cover and let sit in a warm location for 30-60 minutes.
Melt butter and warm the milk to room temperature. Add to bowl with the sourdough mixture along with egg, sugar, and salt and mix well.
Add remaining flour a little at a time, mixing until the dough develops an elastic consistency. If you are using a mixer, the dough should begin to clear the bowl.
Place dough in a well-oiled bowl and flip, so the dough is oiled on all sides.
Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for 30 minutes.
Fold the dough into itself from 4 sides, turn over the dough over, and cover again.
Allow to rise for another 30 minutes.
Repeat the folding process and allow to rise for 60 minutes.
Finally, fold once more and allow to rise for another 60 minutes.
Place dough onto lightly floured surface and cut into 8 equal sized pieces.
Roll each piece into a ball with your hand, then squish into approximately the diameter you would like for your hamburger buns.
Place onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Sprinkle sesame seeds on top, then cover with a tea towel and allow to rise for 60 minutes or until doubled in size.
Brush with egg wash.
Place in pre-heated oven at 400º F for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.
Move to cooling rack, cover with a tea towel, and allow to cool.