Saturday, June 6, 2009

Bread with Butter-Fried Garlic

I love a crispy loaf of bread slathered with garlic and butter. Whenever I make a pot of spaghetti with meatballs I always have plenty of this garlic bread to soak up the sauce. The best part is the bottom half of the loaf that has crispified in the butter that pools in the bottom of the foil.

Garlic Bread
1 stick butter
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 loaf bread (I like to use a really good baguette)

  • Put the butter with the garlic in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a low simmer and let it bubble until the garlic turns light brown.
  • Cut the loaf of bread lengthwise. Spoon the garlic butter over the bread making sure you get the crispy garlic pieces evenly distributed to please everyone.
  • Put the halves back together and wrap in foil, sealing well to prevent any butter leakage (make sure the seam is on top)
  • Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes.
  • Cut the bread up and eat. Delicious!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Hamburger Buns

When I eat a burger, I like the bun to be able to stand on it's own next to the meat. I don't enjoy biting into a tasteless, squishy pillow, which unfortunately includes most burger buns in the grocery isle, so I've been making my own at home. I've tried out a couple recipes lately and I'm really happy with this one. It's not too crusty, like an artisan style roll, and not too soft. It's just right.

Hamburger Buns
4 cups bread flour
2 T Sugar
3 T powdered milk
2 t salt
1 t instant dry yeast
1 cup water
1 egg
3 T softened butter

  • Place all the dry ingredients in the bowl of a stand up mixer and mix with the dough hook attachment for 2 minutes.
  • Add the egg and half of the water. Mix until the dry ingredients start to incorporate into the wet. Add the rest of the water and softened butter and mix on low speed until the wet ingredients pick up all the dry bits on the bottom of the bowl, about 3 more minutes.
  • Turn the mixer up to medium speed and mix until the dough has pulled away from the sides of the bowl, about 5 minutes (the gluten is now moderately developed).
  • Put a towel over the bowl and let it sit in a warm room (70) for an hour for the dough to rest.
  • Divide the dough into 3.5 ounce portions. If you don't have a scale, eyeball a size larger than a golf ball but smaller than a tennis ball.
  • Form the dough into balls then flatten into 4 inch discs with the heel of your hand. It's okay to lightly flour your work surface, but avoid incorporating additional flour into the dough.
  • Place the flattened dough balls on a lined sheetpan. Cover loosely with plastic to avoid a skin to form and put in a warm place (80 - 85) to rise for an hour.
  • Bake at 400 F for about 20 minutes. When done baking, immediately brush tops of the hot rolls with melted butter.
  • When cool, slice in half and eat. Store the extra in the freezer.