Lemonkerdz was once a baker by profession. Now she enjoys baking at home for family and friends.
Great Use for Excess Sourdough Starter
Recently, while searching for recipes where I can use my excess sourdough starter, I made it my mission to create a good sourdough burger bun. I love a good crusty sourdough loaf, but I don’t want it to be the only thing I can make. The feeling of accomplishment when a new bake comes out of the oven and we know this recipe is going to be a keeper can be very rewarding.
I want to enjoy burgers occasionally with my family, some of whom have trouble digesting shop-bought bread, so I wanted to make something that all in the family can enjoy. The whole concept of a slow traditional rise, no commercial yeast, few ingredients and yet are way way better than commercially available burger buns when you just have that craving (and would like something that doesn’t taste like a car sponge and leave you feeling like you have a brick in your stomach).
So here you have it, a light-textured burger bun that's worth eating as much as the burger inside it!
What’s in a Commercially Made Burger Bun?
Take a quick look at the ingredients in a popular burger bun (wrapped in more plastic to contribute to the world plastic ocean . . . personal rant over, back to the bread) then compare it to this recipe's ingredients. If you don’t know what each ingredient is, then why put it in your mouth?
Commercial burger bun Ingredients (from a well-known brand):
Wheat Flour [with Calcium, Iron, Niacin (B3) and Thiamin (B1)], Water, Vegetable Oil (Rapeseed, Sustainable Palm), Yeast, Salt, Sugar, Emulsifiers: E472e, E471, E481, Soya Flour, Gelling Agent: E466, Preservative: Calcium Propionate, Flour Treatment Agents: Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), E920 (Vegetarian)
- Quantity: This recipe will make six regular-size burger buns. Or why not make smaller ones for sliders/bite size burgers and serve them as canapés?
- How to store in the freezer: These buns are freezer friendly. Just take them out to come to room temperature and place in the oven for about five minutes. Alternatively, cut in half and toast just the inside half of the bun.
- 1 cup / 224g activated sourdough starter (when starter floats in water)
- 1/4 cup / 56g tepid/warm water
- 3 cups / 180ml whole milk
- 1 tablespoon / 28g butter, room temperature
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 egg for the dough
- 1 egg beaten for brushing tops before baking
- sesame or black poppy seeds for sprinkling on top
- To make the sponge: Into a stand mixer or large bowl add the water, active sourdough starter and 1/2 cup of flour and mix well to combine. Cover and allow to rest for about 40 minutes.
- Sprinkle the salt over the sponge mix. Warm the milk enough to melt butter, add butter and stir until melted. Add the milk, sugar and egg to the sponge mix and combine together.
- Add 1 1/2 cups flour to the sponge mix a little at a time until completely combined. Knead for 5 minutes until you have a silky mix.
- Add the remaining cup of flour and combine well. Cover and leave your enriched dough to rest for 30 minutes and then fold the dough over itself from each side. Wet fingers of one hand, slide them under the dough lifting to stretch and fold to the other side. Repeat on all 4 sides. Repeat every 30 mins for 2 hrs.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and cut into 6 equal portions. Roll each portion into a small ball. (if you have a dough scraper you can use it to form your rolls tucking the dough under itself). Wet the palm of your hand and press on top of the roll to gently press it down to about an inch thick. Place the rolls onto a baking sheet lined with a silicone sheet to stop them sticking and leave to rise.
- N/b at this point you could leave the rolls to rise until doubled in size, brush with egg and sprinkle with choice of seeds and bake. I recommend going to step 7 for those who find it difficult to digest bread.
- Place in the refrigerator for an overnight ferment. Preheat the oven at 255C / 390F. Brush the rolls with beaten egg and sprinkle seeds of choice on top. Bake for 20 minutes. To check if baked properly remove one roll and tap the base. If baked it should sound hollow, not solid.
More Sourdough Recipes
- Sourdough Starter and Leaven
My first sourdough was disappointing; it came out flat. After that, I did lots of research, and now I get 100% success. Here I will share with you what I learned.
- Artisan Sourdough Bread Recipe
If you are gluten intolerant, don't think you can't ever enjoy bread again. Bread is one of life's great pleasures. The problem isn't the gluten, it's the fast process of bread making for mass production that has given gluten a bad name. Sourdough ma