"The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking you've got to have a what-the-hell attitude." Julia Child

Monday, May 20, 2013

oma buns

For as long as I can remember, my grandmother's made "oma buns" for family meals. While my attempt to re-create my her buns fell a little short, this recipe produces a bun with a deliciously crusty exterior and soft crumb. If I'm honest, I think her years of experience and German know-how may be the keys to her effortless success. :)

Yield: 12 medium buns
170 calories per bun
Active time: 15 minutes
Total time: Overnight proof required, about 20 hours

the starter
1/2 cup cool water
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon yeast

the dough
all of the starter
3½ cups high gluten flour
1 cup lukewarm water
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon instant yeast

the day before:
1. In a medium sized bowl, mix together the starter ingredients and stir until smooth.

2. Cover and let rest at room temperature overnight. (See photo in step 4 to see what the starter looks like after an overnight rise.)

the day of:
3. In a 2 cup Pyrex measuring cup, combine the lukewarm water, yeast, and a pinch of sugar. Set aside for 10 minutes.

4. In your stand mixer bowl, combine the flour, salt, and starter. “Stir” to blend.

5. Pour in the yeast mixture, continuing to “stir” until a shaggy dough forms.

6. Increase the stand mixer speed to 2, and knead until a smooth and cohesive dough forms, about 5 minutes.

7. Turn the dough out into your counter top, knead by hand a few turns, and place into a lightly greased bowl.

8. Cover with plastic wrap and allow the rise for three hours, gently deflating it after 1 hour, and again after 2 hours.

Punch down #1 (after 1 hours)
  Punch down #2 (after 2 hours)
 After 3 hours

9. Turn the dough out onto your counter top and divide it into 12 pieces, shaping each piece into a bun.  Or, make shape loaves.

10. Place the buns on a parchment or silpat lined baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise until they’re very puffy, about 2 hours.

11. Transfer the baking sheet to the fridge and refrigerate for 3 hours.

12. With about 30 minutes left in the final proof, preheat  your oven to 425 degrees.

13. Remove the buns from the fridge, brush with an egg wash, sprinkle with toppings (if desired), score, and bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.  See step 13 of "spicy black bean bread" for more on testing for doneness.

Original recipe found here.

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