Monday, 25 June 2012

Sourdough sandwich buns

I've been working on these for a couple of weeks. I made about fifty hamburger rolls for our street's Jubilee picnic on Monday 4th June, but was in such a hurry that there are no photos. Still, they went over pretty well. Only a few things needed some work, I felt.

The recipe was originally from Ed Woods's book World Sourdoughs From Antiquity, which I find very useful for the basics. I found an identical recipe on, but both recipes needed some tailoring. First, like most American recipes, they contain sugar. I just don't like putting sugar in my bread, on the whole. Honey, certainly, and if I'm using a Carol Field recipe, malt syrup. Maybe that's a bit odd of me, but if it's not a sweet bread, why add sugar? Second, everything is in cups. I'm trying to be more precise these days. If you're just doing these recipes at home for fun (which is what I do, so far), cups are fine as a measurement, but today's cup of flour on a warm dry afternoon probably won't be the same on a damp wet day, or if you pack it a bit harder or use a different cup. It still won't make too much difference; bread is mostly about feel.

Anyway, this is what I did:

Sourdough Sandwich Rolls


- 450 grams sourdough starter, proofed and active
- 50 grams butter
- 115 grams milk, lukewarm
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 5 grams salt
- 400 grams bread flour (may be up to half wholemeal; in this case, I use 100g wholemeal and 100g spelt wholemeal)


Stir together all ingredients except flour.

Add flour, mixing until it comes together enough to be turned out and kneaded.

Knead until dough is smooth and satiny (this can be done on a mixer or bread machine, if preferred). You can add some more flour, if you feel it's right.

Divide into portions of about 125g. Roll these using your cupped palm, resting your fingers against the work surface. It may help to form them into balls first, by folding the outer edges into the centre.

Lay them on greased trays. Cover and let rise until doubled in bulk, about an hour or more.  If you want, you can brush the tops with water or milk and cover with sesame or poppy seeds.  I also used about a third of the dough to make a sandwich loaf:

Preheat the oven to 180C, and bake for 20 minutes until lightly browned. They may need slightly more, if they are large.

Cool on wire rack.

They look pretty good, and the texture is just right for our lunchbox sandwiches.

The only slight problem with these is that I'm finding the wholemeal spelt flour stales a bit faster than I like, but the taste can't really be faulted.

I'm going to try submitting these to YeastSpotting.

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