Thursday, May 22, 2008

Sea Salt & Thyme Turkey Burgers with Homemade Buns

I love love love Matt's turkey burgers. Thyme is such a wonderful herb to use with poultry. The sea salt though is really the thing that makes these burgers sing. There is no recipe with set amounts for them but he mixes a good amount of chopped fresh thyme leaves into the ground turkey. Then he makes the turkey into patties. Before cooking he presses some sea salt into the top & bottom of each burger. We don't cook these on the grill as they tend to fall apart so a griddle is the way to go.
Sea Salt & Thyme Turkey Burger
Buns are always an issue though. I don't like to buy hamburger buns in packages at the store because there are always my more than I need for two of us. Even when you freeze the extra they are never as good when you thaw them. The other option is to go buy bakery buns the day we are planning on using them but they are often way too big. So, I decided since I always (ok, almost always) have some bread dough in the fridge why not make my own buns. I use the Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day: The Discovery That Revolutionizes Home Baking way of making bread. Basically you stir the ingredients together, let it rise & then keep it in the fridge until you want to bake it. This is perfect for buns because I can break off enough dough for as many buns as I want at a time. It took a few tries to come up with the right amount of dough for these as my first batch were huge (um yeah 7 oz is too big for a bun oops).
Fresh Baked Hamburger Buns

Hamburger Buns
(based on the Buttermilk Bread Recipe in Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day)

1/2 c warm water (no warmer than 110 F)
1/4 c yogurt or buttermilk
1 rounded t yeast
1 rounded t salt
1 rounded t sugar
1 1/2 c + 2 T all -purpose flour
1 well beaten egg (optional)
poppy seeds, sesame seeds, or dried minced onion (optional)

In a large container with a lid that isn't completely airtight (I use a Tupperware container & don't seal it completely) mix together the water, yogurt or buttermilk, yeast, salt & sugar. Using a spoon stir in the flour. If it gets to hard to stir use your hand to finish the mixing. You don't need to knead just get everything completely mixed. Put the lid on the container & allow to sit at room temperature for about 2 hours, the dough should rise & then start to fall again. You can form the dough into buns & do the second rise at this point or put it covered into the fridge to use over the next 7 or so days (Its a wet dough & actually a little easier to use after refrigeration).

When ready to make the buns pull off 3 - 4 oz pieces of dough (3 oz is a regular size burger, 4 oz will give you something slightly larger). Stretch the dough in your hands a little, turning it under itself to form a ball. Turn 1/4 turn & repeat this step, continue doing this a few times until you have a smooth surface on top of the ball, you will have the ends that you pull together on the bottom. Place the ball with the smooth side up on a baking pan covered with either a silicone mat or parchment paper. Press the ball flat to create a bun shape, they will rise quite a bit in cooking so I press them to about 1/2 inch. Allow to rise for 1 - 1 1/2 hours (I find the fresh dough needs less rising time than the refrigerated). Before baking we brushed each bun with a little beaten egg & then top with either a poppy or sesame seeds or minced dried onion (the onion smelled fantastic cooking). Bake for 20 - 25 minutes at 350 F. The buns should be golden brown & sound hollow when you tap on the bottom. Allow to cool on a rack before slicing.

Makes 4 - 5 buns depending on size.
These made great sandwich rolls too.

If you have a little dough leftover mix it right into the next batch, it will give it a slightly sourdough flavor.


Sharon said...

Thanks for posting this recipe. I run into the same problem with the 8 bun packs. I'll definitely be trying this soon!

Anonymous said...

Thanks! Those buns look perfect for this weekend!

Thistlemoon said...

Thanks for the book tip. I have recently decided that I MUST start making my own bread. I am tired of buying at the store! So is it really 5 mins a day and how long does the dough keep in the fridge?

THANKS! - oh and those burgers look YUMMY!

Anonymous said...

these turkey burgers look tasty...I need to get me that book. Artisan bread in 5 mins!? I'm there! :)

kat said...

Jenn - The five minutes is really the hands on time. It takes 5 minutes to mix up a batch of the dough. Then you just leave it to rise & put it in the fridge. On baking day it takes less than 5 minutes to shape the loaf but it does need to rise again, usually about 1 1/2 hours. Different types of dough in the book last different amounts of time, the master recipe can last 14 days while this one with dairy in it only a week. We have not bought bread since we got this book. I got it for my Dad & he bakes all their bread now too. He even freezes loaf size amounts of it to use later.

Nikki @ NikSnacks said...

Your burgers do look yummy. That cheese...oooohhh!

Ive never made my own buns at home before. I'll have to try this recipe, too. And then fire up the ol' grill for the holiday weekend!

Deborah said...

I love the idea of homemade buns - we are in the same boat, so I should do this! And we don't usually do turkey burgers, but this sounds too good to resist!

Anonymous said...

These are awesome! I'm so thrilled that you made hamburger buns out of the buttermilk dough, that is exactly what I use as well. Yours look to be perfect!

Thanks for sharing these with your readers.

If you haven't already made a copy of our errata sheet you may want to. Despite all of our effort to catch mistakes there are still several.

Enjoy! Zoë François

kelly.dee said...

I love Artisan bread in Five! I've been thinking about making homemade turkey burgers all week but never thought of making my own buns! I will definitely have to try to make these!

kat said...

Thanks everyone for the comments.

Zoe - I continue to love your book & can't help singing its praises.

MoonlitKnit said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Khadijah said...

Is the yeast in this recipe regular active dry yeast or instant or fresh?

kat said...

Khadijah - I use Active Dry Yeast

Khadijah said...

Thanks for the quick reply! I made these today and we just ate them with black bean burgers, and they were excellent! I have never made buns before, and the dough seemed to sticky to work, but they turned out really well, and they were so easy!

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t = teaspoon
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