Every weekend, Brandon and I take time to plan out our dinner menu for the following week so we can do all our grocery shopping at once. For a while, we were shopping every day or every other day for whatever we felt like making that night, which resulted in way more wasted money and food. We even geek out about this so much as to keep a running shared google doc of links to blogs/recipes we've found that sound interesting (and surprisingly, actually end up trying most things.)
A couple of weeks ago, we really wanted to try this recipe for chicken cemita sandwiches*, but didn't want to waste money on not-so-tasty, store bought hamburger buns or torta rolls, and so I volunteered to make brioche buns. I had seen a recipe on Megan's blog a while back, and had been meaning to try it anyway. Making brioche seemed sort of horrifying for me, because it's just so much better and fluffier than regular bread and how on earth is this going to go right in my tiny-ass kitchen?
But I decided to try it anyway. And these turned out so legit that I will never buy rolls/buns again. For reals. They are SO EASY. And you can freeze them, so you have some on hand whenever you need them. They're just perfect. And since they're a "lighter" brioche, they're not quite so buttery, so they're good for a lot of different uses.
Light Brioche Rolls
recipe adapted ever-so-slightly from Take A Megabite
1 cup water + 1 T water for egg wash
3 TB milk
2 tsp instant yeast or active dry yeast
2 1/2 TB granulated sugar
2 large eggs, divided
3 cups bread flour
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 1/2 TB unsalted butter, softened sesame seeds (optional)
- In a glass measuring cup, combine 1 cup water and milk. Microwave for 10 seconds spurts until warm, about 30 seconds total. Whisk in the yeast and sugar. Let stand until foamy, about 5-10 minutes. (Technically, if you're using instant yeast, you can just put your yeast in with the dry ingredients, but doing this anyway won't hurt a bit.) Meanwhile, beat one egg and set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk flours with salt. Add butter and rub into flour between your fingers, making crumbs (or, you could be a cheater like me and pulse the flour/salt a few times (not too many!!) with the butter in a food processor). Place butter/flour mixture in your mixer bowl.
- Pour in the yeast mixture and beaten egg and, using your paddle attachment, mix on low until a soft dough forms. Then, switch to your dough hook and again, mix/knead on low for 6-10 minutes. You may need to throw a little extra flour in there, but try to resist the urge to put more than a couple tablespoons in! The dough will be somewhat sticky, but keep in mind that the more flour you knead in, the tougher the buns will get. Try to leave them stickier than your average bread dough.
- Shape dough into a ball. Place in a medium bowl sprayed with cooking spray or lightly coated with neutral oil, turning once to coat. Top with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, 1 to 2 hours.
- Line a baking sheet or two with parchment paper. Divide dough into 8 equal parts (4-ish ounces a piece). Gently roll each into a ball and arrange 2-3 inches apart on the prepared baking sheets. Cover loosely with a piece of plastic wrap lightly coated in nonstick spray and let buns rise in a warm place for 1 to 2 hours.
- Set a large shallow pan of water on the oven floor. Preheat oven to 400F with rack in center. Beat remaining egg with 1 T water and brush some on top of buns. Sprinkle with sesame seeds if ya’ feel like it. Bake, rotating baking sheets halfway through baking, until tops are golden brown, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool completely.
*Definitely try this recipe! I sliced my onions kind of thick, and seared them briefly. Totally worth the five extra minutes.