Elevating The Burger: Tangy Sourdough Hamburger Buns

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There’s nothing quite like a juicy hamburger nestled between two slices of warm, homemade sourdough bread. But store-bought buns often leave something to be desired – either dry and crumbly, or too soft and doughy. This recipe unlocks the secrets to creating the perfect sourdough hamburger bun: soft, slightly tangy, with a beautiful golden brown crust that holds its shape.

Ingredients:

Sourdough Hamburger Buns
Sourdough Hamburger Buns

1 cup (200 grams) active sourdough starter, fed and bubbly

  • 1 ¾ cups (350 grams) warm water (around 90°F / 32°C)
  • 3 ¾ cups (475 grams) all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 ½ tablespoons (22.5 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons (7.5 grams) kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter, softened

  • Instructions:

    1. Combine the starter and water: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sourdough starter and warm water until well combined.

    2. Incorporate the dry ingredients: Add the flour, sugar, and salt to the wet ingredients. Using a dough whisk or spoon, mix until a shaggy dough forms.

    3. Knead the dough: Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface. Knead for 10 minutes, adding a little extra flour as needed to prevent sticking. The dough should become smooth and elastic.

    4. Bulk fermentation: Place the dough in a clean, oiled bowl. Cover it tightly with plastic wrap and let it rise at room temperature for 4-6 hours, or until doubled in size. During this time, you might perform a series of “stretch and folds” every 30 minutes for the first 2 hours. This helps develop the dough’s structure and gluten strength. To do a stretch and fold, gently lift the dough from one side, stretch it upwards, and fold it over the center. Repeat this process three times, then rotate the bowl 90 degrees and perform another set of folds.

    5. Shaping the buns: Once the dough has doubled in size, gently deflate it on a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough into 6 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a tight ball by tucking the edges underneath to create a smooth surface.

    6. Second rise: Place the shaped buns seam-side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover them loosely with plastic wrap and let them rise for another 2-3 hours, or until noticeably puffy.

    7. Preheat the oven: About 30 minutes before the end of the second rise, preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C).

    8. Egg wash (optional): For a shiny golden brown crust, whisk together 1 egg yolk with 1 tablespoon of milk or water. Gently brush the tops of the buns with the egg wash.

    9. Bake: Bake the buns for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown and firm to the touch.

    10. Cool and enjoy: Let the buns cool on a wire rack for at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving.

    Nutrition Facts (per bun):

    Calories: 320

  • Fat: 7g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.5g
  • Carbohydrates: 48g
  • Sugar: 4g
  • Protein: 10g
  • Sodium: 320mg

  • These are approximate values and may vary depending on the specific ingredients used.

    Conclusion

    These homemade sourdough hamburger buns are a delicious upgrade to any burger night. They’re surprisingly easy to make and well worth the effort. The tangy sourdough flavor perfectly complements the savory flavors of your burger, while the soft and slightly chewy texture creates a delightful eating experience. So ditch the store-bought buns and try making your own!

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

    1. Can I use a stand mixer to knead the dough? Absolutely! Use the dough hook attachment and knead on low speed for 5-7 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic.

    2. My dough isn’t rising! What could be wrong? There could be a few reasons. Make sure your starter is active and bubbly. The water temperature might be too cold (it should be lukewarm). You might also need to adjust the rising times depending on your room temperature.

    3. Do I have to perform the stretch and folds? While not strictly necessary, stretch and folds help develop the dough’s gluten strength, resulting in a better texture and rise.