Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns
5 cups (+) whole wheat flour
1 1/2 c. warm water
4 1/2 tsp. regular or active dry yeast
2 Tb. honey
1/4 c. water
1/2 c. milk
2 Tb. butter
2 tsp. sea salt (I just used regular iodized)
In a large mixing bowl, stir together 3 cups of whole wheat flour and 1 1/2 cups warm water. Set aside to let rest for 30 minutes (I didn't let it sit quite this long). In the meantime, mix together 1/4 cup water, yeast and honey. Allow this to sit for at least 10 minutes to activate the yeast.
Melt butter, milk and salt in a small saucepan on the stove. Do not allow the mixture to get above 120 degrees.
Pour yeast mixture and milk mixture into flour mixture. Add remaining two cups of flour (more if needed).
Knead for about 10 minutes until dough begins to look “shiny” (or pulls cleanly away from mixing bowl). Put dough back into the bowl, cover and let rise for at least an hour…or until it has doubled. (I didn't have an hour to let it rise, but it did double in less than that time.)
Pull dough onto a clean counter top and knead for a couple of minutes to get any air bubbles out. Roll dough on a lightly floured surface until about 1/2 inch thick.*
Cut circles from the dough with a large drinking glass or wide mouth jar. Place circles on a well- buttered baking dish about an inch apart.
Allow to rise for about 30 minutes. Bake for 20-25 minutes in a 350 degree oven. Makes about 18 buns.
*Note: Either I prepared mine too thin or didn't give them long enough to rise, because I ended up with more than 18 buns. I added the extras to the tops of others to make double-decker buns that actually turned out perfect, while the single-layer ones were too thin.