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Whole Wheat Brioche Hamburger Buns

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The first time I made these buns, I was a few months pregnant with my daughter and I had the most insane craving for a burger with avocado on a brioche bun. For some reason, brioche buns aren’t available in regular grocery stores, at least not around me. So I did a little research and set out to make my own. I was pumped. They were perfect. What happened you ask? After 4 hours of letting the dough rise to perfection, just before I was about to brush the egg wash on the buns and place them in the oven… Mike knocked over a grocery bag full of groceries right on top of the buns. They were brioche pancakes. I can’t remember who cried first, Mike or me. To this day, he stays out of the kitchen when I’m making these.

Makes 8 Buns

2 1/3 Cups whole wheat flour, plus more as needed

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp butter, softened

¾ Cup warm water

2 tbsp warm milk

1 ½ tbsp dry instant yeast

1 ½ tbsp sugar

2 eggs, divided

1 tbsp cold water

Combine the flour, salt and butter until the flour looks crumbly, like panko breadcrumbs.

Combine the milk and the water in a large measuring cup, or bowl if you don’t have one.

Stir in the yeast and sugar into the milk mixture.

Pour the liquid into the flour mixture.

Crack the egg into measuring cup that had the milk mixture, beat the egg and add it to the dough.

Knead until it comes together

You may have to add more flour, up to a 1/2 cup, one tbsp. at a time. It’ll be very soft but not sticking to your fingers anymore. When the sides of the bowl are clean then you’ve added enough flour (if using a stand mixer), if kneading by hand, the dough won’t stick to your hand anymore.

Cover with the bowl (with the dough inside) with a clean towel and set it aside to let the dough rise for 2 hours.

After 2 hours remove the dough from the bowl and place on a lightly floured cutting board. Using a serrated knife, cut the dough in half and then cut each half into 4 equal portions (you’ll have 8 equal pieces).

I roll each portion into a ball, like a meatball. Look at the dough, one side will naturally look smoother then the other. Smooth this side by pulling the excess dough to the bottom (like a water balloon when you were little). Then twist the dough at the bottom so that the dough has a little knot at the bottom and press it in so the dough stays in tact. Place the bun on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Repeat this for every portion of dough and leave a few inches room in between every bun.

Place the clean kitchen towel over the buns on the baking sheet and let the dough rise again for another 2 hours.

After the dough has risen the second time, preheat your oven to 350.

Whisk together the second egg and the one tbsp. of cold water.

When the oven is preheated and you are just about to put the buns in the oven, brush each one lightly with the egg wash. If you put the egg wash on the buns too early they will start to collapse from the weight of the egg wash.

Bake the buns for 15 to 20 minutes, until they are a dark golden brown; mine tend to always come out perfect after 18 minutes.

Notes:

  1. You can freeze half of the buns, they keep well in the freezer.

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