I adore a good burger. This one is simple, but you do need to make your own hamburger buns, it really makes all the difference. These buns are not too soft and squishy and can stand up to the multiple layerings of a burger. Make a double batch of the buns and stick them in the freezer -- good advice from the author of the recipe below.
The beef and pork patties are flavored with a touch of kecap manis, a sweet, thick Indonesian soy sauce, which I just discovered thanks to Chubby Hubby, a must-read food blog, not to be mistaken for my lovable hubby. Enjoy!
Adapted from Baking Bread: Old and New Traditions by Beth Hensperger
Makes 12 rolls
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 3/4 cups warm water
1/3 cup instant nonfat dried milk
2 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
4 1/2-5 cups bread flour
1 egg, beaten with a touch of water, for glazing buns before baking
1/4 cup sesame seeds (white or black or both)
In a small bowl, sprinkle the yeast and sugar in 1/2 cup of the warm water. Stir to dissolve and let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes.
In a mixer bowl, add the remaining 1 1/4 cups of warm water, dried milk, sugar, salt and butter. With the paddle attachment, mix the ingredients together briefly. Add 2 cups of the flour and beat on medium until creamy, about 1 minute. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until a soft, shaggy dough forms and clears the sides of the bowl.
Turn the dough out onto a floured work surface and knead for about 3 minutes, until the dough is soft and smooth. Place in a greased, deep bowl, turn once to coat the top and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let rise at room temperature until double in bulk, about 1 to 1 1/4 hours.
Turn the dough onto the work surface, and divide it into 12 equal portions. Form each into a tight ball by rolling it on the work surface with a cupped hand over the dough. Place balls on a greased or parchment lined baking sheet, about 2 inches apart. Flatten each ball with the palm of your hand. Cover the dough loosely with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until puffy, about 20 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Brush each dough ball with the egg glaze and sprinkle the surface with sesame seeds. Bake until the rolls are golden brown and firm to the touch, about 20-25 minutes. Place on a rack to cool before slitting each roll in half.
Makes 4 patties
350 g (12 oz.) ground beef and pork
1 teaspoon kecap manis
1/2 shallot, chopped finely (about 1/4 cup)
2 tablespoons of chopped cilantro
1 egg (leftover from the egg wash above)
Pinch of salt and pepper
4 slices of cheddar cheese
Mix all ingredients together well and form into 4 thin patties.
Heat a frying pan and add scant olive or vegetable oil. Toast the inside of each hamburger bun and set aside.
Add scant oil to the pan and fry the hamburger patties over medium high heat until well browned on both sides and juices run clear.
Add a slice of cheddar cheese on the top of each patty and let melt before removing them from the pan to the toasted buns.
Serve the burgers with arugula, sliced tomatoes, finely sliced shallots and your favorite condiment. I made a quick sauce with a combination of mayonnaise, kecap, ketchup and yellow mustard and smeared it on one side of the burger bun.