Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Up until recently, I didn't even know I could make bread. Yeast used to scare me. My mom never succeeded at making bread, so in my mind, that meant that I couldn't either. Then my dad jumped on the no-knead bread bandwagon with much success. His bread is beautiful. Then came pizza. Homemade pizza is nothing like the take out stuff. Thousand times better. So I though if he could, maybe I could too. Turns out I can make no-knead bread, but not as good as he can. Then came the Daring Bakers and my first challenge, the yeasted coffee cake. Yeah, that was good. A few days ago, I made a fougasse. Yep, success again.

And tonight, I made buns. Homemade buns are ridiculous. I had no clue how good they could be. And so easy! Start them mid afternoon, and you'll have them baked and sampled in plenty of time for dinner.

They are something else. After having split one open and sampling it, I went out on the deck where my husband was doing yard work. I offered him a sample, he took one look at my face and said, "they're that good"? I guess I looked pretty proud of myself. He took one bite and closed his eyes. Yeah. That good.

That means that buying buns at the grocery store will result in a mediocre experience from now on. What am I going to do when I have to go back to work? No more starting dinner at 2 o'clock. Guess we'll have to save those meals for weekends!

So yeah, this weekend. Make buns! They are insane!

Soft Buns
recipe source: taste and tell

makes 12 buns

1 cup milk
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup butter
4 1/2 – 5 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 (.25 ounce) package instant yeast
2 tablespoons white sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 eggs, (one for the dough, one for the egg wash)
1 tablespoon water
sesame seeds, optional

In a small saucepan, combine the milk, water and butter. Heat until very warm, but not boiling.

In the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups of the flour, the yeast, sugar and salt. Mix together. Mix in 1 of the eggs. Add in the warmed milk mixture. Continue to add in the flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until the dough comes together. It should pull away from the sides of the mixer, but should still be tacky. If using a mixer, change to the dough hook and knead for 5-8 minutes. If making by hand, turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 minutes.

Cover the dough and let rise for 30-40 minutes.

Shape into 12 balls and place on a greased cookie sheet. Flatten slightly. Cover and let rise for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400F. Combine the remaining egg and the tablespoon of water. Brush gently on top of the buns. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, if desired. Bake in the preheated oven for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown.

I warmed my milk, (I used whole milk), water and butter in the microwave for 2 minutes, and when I took it out, I was sure it was too hot, and would totally kill the yeast, but stirring it once or twice, I decided it was going to be ok. (And it was)

I used 4 1/2 cups of flour total, and I think it was perfect for me. I let the stand mixer work its magic for 8 minutes, and turned out the dough into a clean, lightly oiled bowl to let rise for a good 45 minutes. The dough handles beautifully.

Now I can't count, so I divided my dough into 8 pieces before I realized I was supposed to have 12. So I made 6 huge buns, and divided the two that were left into 4 pieces, to make 10 buns total. Next time I'll be sure to make 12, as the small ones were a bit too small, and the big ones, well, they were too big.

I baked them in two batches, on parchment paper. I'd say that sesame seeds are a must, look wise. These buns come out so soft, they are wonderful. You really, really, must try them. We made chicken burgers out of them, but they would be awesome hamburgers.

This recipe is another keeper!


  1. I've never tried making bread before, so I think this will be my first! Now, since I'm a bit dense...when combining the ingredients in the mixer, which attachment should be used before the dough hook? The buns look amazing, can't wait to try them :)

  2. Sounds like a great new recipe to try!

  3. I'm making them, they look fab! What happened to the other egg? I'll let you know how mine turned out.

  4. Forget the burger. I'd happily eat these just plain, smeared with a little soft butter. ;)

  5. @ Solangel - Use the paddle attachment before switching over to the dough hook. It's easier to get all the ingredients combined. Thanks for the comment, I'll add that info in the recipe :)

    @ Jeannie - Thanks for stopping by :) You won't be disappointed if you try it!

    @ Scribble Monster - The other egg is for the egg wash. Just before baking, you whisk that other egg with a tablespoon water, and brush that on the dough with a pastry brush. I had to look for it too, when I read the recipe the first time. I'll modify the recipe so it's more obvious. Thanks for your comment!

    @ Carolyn - Incredible just plain. I added homemade jam... Oh boy!

  6. Just yesterday I posted on my blog about my inability to make bread, as they always turn out hard. Maybe I will give it another try, using this recipe:)

  7. I am going to try it this week! Thanks for posting :D

  8. Just forgot to buy buns today and didn't feel like going back to the store. I could have used this!

    Thanks for your sweet comment on my blog. :)
    -Nicole @ Wonderful Joy Ahead

  9. The buns look lovely. Hope to try out the recipe soon. Will use my breadmaker to do the kneading job. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Family of two question - Before baking can I half the recipie and freeze the portion I won't be using?

  11. never froze that dough, but i know bread dough freezes fine... so give it a try!

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