Sesame Sandwich Buns

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Makes 6 large sandwich buns (can divide dough into smaller pieces for 12 slider buns).

Tip: If you have a local bakery that can make delicious buns for your summer grilling needs, by all means, support that bakery! If grocery store buns are your only alternative, consider giving this recipe a try. It takes a little time, but most of it is inactive time (raising/baking) and the end result is so worth it! We used our buns for grilled bison burgers with goat cheese and veggie toppings. They will also be delicious for pulled pork, grilled portabella mushrooms, veggie burgers, tuna salad, etc. Make these buns! 😉

Ingredients
2 ¾ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp garlic powder or onion powder (optional)
2 ¼ tsp instant yeast
4 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 large egg
3/4 cups water

Olive oil (to grease bowl)

1 egg
2 Tbsp Trader Joe’s “Everything but the Bagel” seasoning (sub just sesame seeds if preferred)

Prep
Spread a light coating of olive oil in a large bowl; set aside.
In a stand mixer bowl, whisk together flour, salt, sugar, garlic powder (if using) and dry yeast.
Heat water to lukewarm (approx. 100 degrees F.)

Directions
Add room temp butter, lukewarm water and egg to mixer bowl with dry ingredients. Mix with paddle attachment until dough comes together; change to dough hook and mix on medium speed for 5 minutes. Form the dough into a ball and transfer it to the oiled bowl, rolling it to coat with a little of the olive oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise in a warm, dark place for 60 to 90 minutes until it has at least doubled in size.

Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Deflate the dough by pulling gently around the edges to the center of the ball. Pat onto a cutting board and divide into 6 equal pieces. Shape each dough piece into a ball, tucking the edges under and rolling on the cutting board with one hand surrounding the ball to smooth the tops. Place the 6 dough balls on the parchment paper, spacing them so they do not touch. Gently flatten the balls so they’re about 3 ½ inches in diameter. Cover with plastic wrap and let the dough balls rise for an additional 35-45 minutes until the buns are doubled. Note: This may take longer if your room is on the cool side.

During the 2nd rise, check to be sure the oven rack is in the center of the oven, then preheat oven to 350 degrees F. so oven is ready when the dough is ready to bake. Whisk 1 egg with 1 tsp water. Brush tops and sides of the buns with the egg mixture; sprinkle the buns with the Trader Joe’s seasoning or use sesame seeds or a pinch of coarse sea salt on each bun.

Bake in preheated oven for about 20 minutes or until dark golden brown. Cool completely on baking sheet. Slice for burgers or other sandwiches using a serrated knife. Toast cut surface on buttered griddle if preferred.

Storage
If not using fresh baked buns in the same day, they can be frozen for up to 1 month in freezer bags. Thaw in the bag at room temperature, slice and toast as described above (if toasting is desired).

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