Next Sunday, we’re hosting a family get-together for Father’s Day. I’m so fortunate to have a wonderful dad and it will be fun to have him and my mom here for the weekend. My brother Chris (another really great dad!) and his family will be coming too. But first, Pete and I will be going to a Father’s Day party at his parents’ place Sunday morning, to celebrate the awesome dad on that side of the family.
We’re hoping a nice day will allow us to let the party flow outside to our new patio. Just finished this week, we’ve got a beautiful new outdoor space made to share. Filled with flowering and vegetable-bearing plants, a comfortable seating group that overlooks the pond, and a fire-feature table that is especially cool after dark. Outdoor speakers, too, that can make it a dance party if the mood strikes. Last night we spent the entire evening on the patio—what great way to relax!
With not a whole lot of time in between parties, it’s necessary for me to do as much food prep in advance as possible. While the celebration menu isn’t completely set, the main course is definitely going to be grilled black bean burgers (I can mix those up the day before and refrigerate until pattying them up). So today I made the buns to be frozen till the big day. I slightly undercooked them so they can be reheated without drying out. Made with both whole wheat and white bread flour, they are whole grain without being heavy. Perfect burger buns or great for any sandwich too. Oh, and they’re also vegan—bonus!
Whole Wheat Burger Buns
1 ½ cup warm water (105-115 degrees F.)
1 tbls. plus 1 tsp. active dry yeast
2 cups whole wheat bread flour
2 cups white bread flour
¼ cup natural sugar
1 tsp. salt
Stir together yeast, water, and sugar in a large bowl, and let stand for about 5 minutes until foamy. Add flours and salt. Mix until dough comes together and then turn out onto a floured surface and knead for 5-10 minutes. Knead in a little more flour if dough is too sticky. Form dough into a ball and place into an oiled bowl. Cover with a damp towel and set in a warm, draft-free place to rise. Let it rise until double in size, 45 minutes to an hour.
Punch down dough and form it into a rectangle. Cut the rectangle into thirds, and cut each third into four pieces. Form each piece into a smooth ball by pulling the dough down and tuck it underneath. Place balls onto a lightly oiled baking sheet and cover loosely with the damp towel. Let rise for another 45 minutes to an hour.
Brush buns with almond or soy milk and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds. Bake at 375 degrees F. for about 20 minutes, until golden, rotating pan after about 10 minutes. Cool buns on a wire rack. If you’re going to freeze them for later use, undercook them by a minute or two. Thaw frozen buns and heat in a 350 degree F. oven for 5 minutes. Makes 12 buns.