Boy does the time pass quickly, it seems like it was yesterday since I celebrated the New year with an exclusive solo dance party (party of one: me). Like everyone says time is something we always seem to not have enough of. I think as a student, we have the tendency to leave everything to the last minute; hopefully a habit I will be able to get rid of soon.
Well I am getting better at starting assignments at least 3 weeks before but then the procrastination sets in and I do most of it in the last few days. I know everyone has done this once, even the most studious people. Staying on track here; 2 assignments down, 2 more to go. Power on!
Brrr….. I don’t if any of my readers are from Sydney but hell! It has gotten cold quick! We are only in the 2 months of autumn and the weather has decided to turn chilly. Over the past two days my family and I had to bring out the winter warmers and for me bring out the comfort foods from the freezer. Yes, the stews, soups and braises are now in the weekly rotation of dinner dishes and alongside a big plate of Veggies and the normal bowls of rice. This also means it is time to bring out the fat pants and sweaters from the back area of the closet. Nothing better than feeling comfortable when it freezing.
For the northern Hemisphere readers, I know you guys are entering spring and summer. Lucky ducks, because it means it is going to be burger season soon. I am always on the lookout for new recipes for burger buns, not only because they make the perfect any time/ anywhere meal but because it is not just a one note food. Stale bread equals bread puddings or French toast bakes; Crumbs can be fried or used as crunchy topping on a pasta bake; and even dessert when you sandwich ice cream in between a good sweet burger bun or brioche. I know this sounds weird but it really, really good! Think ice cream sandwiches with a bit more substance.
While I agree you can get good burger buns in the stores now, one thing I have problem with is that they never have enough sesame seeds on the top. Every time there a pathetic sprinkle of a few white seeds top a bun the size of my hand. This is not a good seed to bread ratio! Sure, the seeds are there to make it look pretty but they also add flavour as well. The undertone of toastiness is what you want in a burger bun, sort of like an aroma more than a taste but that is how it works. Here the crust is encrusted with seeds and if you can not decide between black and white you do not have to anymore!
I took a recipe for one of the most addictive rolls here in Sydney, Guy Grossi’s Intercostal 3am burger rolls. To boost the flavour of the normal burger bun, he uses butter milk. For me, I had always wanted to try making a bun from Mascarpone cheese and the results? I should have tried this sooner. The mascarpone cheese provides its rich buttery flavour but keeps the dough light and springy as it is not weighed down by heaps of butter. Also the cheese adds flavour and natural sweetness to buns. These buns do not have a strong yeast flavour (I don’t know, some people seem to like the taste of yeast in their bread) you will not be disappointed about the taste.
I took inspiration from the cute mini sliders you guys get in the states. So one bun is equal to one slice of bread. The flavours of sesame seeds add a crunchy layer to the crust and form a wonderful nutty base for your next BBQ party.
Black and white, yin and yang. Balance is the key to perfect burger buns, Promise you will not be disappointed.
Two tone mini slider buns
Makes 30 mini buns or 15 pairs.
Adapted from Australian Gourmet traveller April 2013
10g dried yeast
200 g bread flour
150g plain flour
250g mascarpone cheese, room temperature
100 ml buttermilk, warmed
40g butter room temperature in cubes
1 egg white and water mix
Black and white sesame seeds, about 100 g for each.
In large jug mix buttermilk, cheese and yeast and 20g of sugar. Leave to get foamy for 20 minutes.
In large bowl place flour remaining sugar, salt. Stir to combine. Pour in the yeast mix to the flour mix. Mix with a large spoon until it foams a rough ball.
Turn out onto an oiled surface. Add butter a cube at a time during kneading.
Knead until it is smooth and elastic. Also use the window pane test for gluten development; you want a thin transparent skin. Transfer to large oiled bowl, cover and leave for 90 minutes.
Once doubled in size, Punch down. Divide your dough into two parts. Make 15 balls from each dough ball. One batch will be rolled in black sesame and one in white. Push then quite close together to get the bubble effect.
Pour your seeds on a plate and roll your ball in the seeds. Transfer to a lined baking tray. Each pair will have one black and one white dough ball. I recommend you do one seed colour first then move on to the next one.
Once tray is filled, cover with clingfilm and leave in warm area for 1 hour.
Pre heat oven to 190C. Brush each bun with egg wash and bake for 20 minutes. Transfer to cooling rack immediately once cooked.