These are easy to make and better than you'll ever get from a grocery store. They're also slightly bigger than grocery store buns, which is sometimes a plus. You will need two six-piece muffin top pans. (You can bake these buns on a flat stone, but they come out thinner and larger in diameter.) You will also need a stand mixer or arms like Popeye the Sailor.
You can use this dough to make hotdog buns, too, but I've never had much luck with the shape.
- 1/3 cup warm water (105° - 115° F)
- 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp sugar
- 2-1/2 tsp (one packet) active dry yeast
- 1-1/3 cups warm milk
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 eggs beaten until uniform plus one more for egg wash
- 1-1/2 tsp salt
- 4-1/2 to 5 cups bread flour or all purpose flour
- optional: sesame, poppy, or caraway seeds
Make the Dough
Dissolve one tsp. of sugar and yeast in the warm water; set aside;
Warm the milk and butter together. I use the 8 oz. beverage setting of my microwave.
Put milk, butter, remaining sugar, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer, add two cups of flour and mix thoroughly. Add the yeast mixture, the beaten eggs, and another cup of flour and mix. Add the remaining 1-1/2 cups of flour and mix. Increase the mixer speed a notch and add more flour as needed until the mixture cleans the side of the bowl.
Knead at medium-high speed for about two minutes, then turn the dough out into a large bowl that has been rinsed with hot water but not dried. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1-1/2 hours.
Make the Buns
Divide the dough into 12 pieces by dividing in half, then each half into thirds, and finally each third in half. A certain amount of precision is needed or you'll have buns of widely varying sizes. I use a kitchen scale. Depending on how much flour you used, each bun will be a little under four ounces of dough. (Weigh the whole mass and divide by 12 to get individual weight before you start cutting.)
Roll each piece into a ball, then flatten into a 3-1/2" circle. I use a 3-12" round cutter and press the dough into it to get a nearly perfect circle. Spray the depressions in the muffin top tin with cooking spray and place each bun into a depression. Cover with a towel and allow to rise until increased by 50%.
Preheat the oven to 400°. Glaze the buns with an egg wash of one egg beaten with one tablespoon of water until uniform. Shake on the optional seeds while the glaze is still wet and bake for about 20 minutes, to a dough temperature of 190°. Exchange the pans on upper and lower racks after 10 minutes of baking.
Cool on a rack. Do not wrap until completely cool.
Orignially posted: 2012-02-26
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