Now that we’re all spending a lot more time inside, these two recipes have been seeing a lot of use in my home. One is an all-purpose hamburger/hot dog bun that I stumbled upon out of necessity with grocery store shortages, but will now forever be our go-to because it’s so easy and tasty! The other is a chocolate chip cookie recipe that has recently become our favorite and makes use of the quarantine sourdough so many people are getting into.
You might think me a little particular, but I have three kitchen scales, and I use one or more of them daily. I just weigh everything from coffee beans to ingredients for baking. It’s easier, more accurate, and cleaner than dealing with multiple bowls, measuring cups and spoons. Anyway, I’ve included volumetric measurements along with weights in case you’re not ready to switch. But really, you should get a scale!
Sourdough Chocolate Chip Cookies
It seems with yeast shortages everyone’s getting into making sourdough bread! If you’re now maintaining a sourdough starter, one painful part is tossing unused starter as you feed it, especially with flour so hard to come by right now. Instead of throwing unused starter out, start saving it up in a separate bowl in your fridge! You can use discarded starter that isn’t strong enough to make bread for so many things – from crackers to pancakes to my favorite, sourdough chocolate chip cookies.
283g (2.5 sticks) softened butter
283g (1 1/3 cups) brown sugar
227g (1 cup + 2.5 tbsp) white sugar
200g (~ ¾) cup starter
88g (5) egg yolks
8g (2 tsp) vanilla
400g (3 1/3 cups) all-purpose flour
67g (½ cup + 1 tbsp) whole wheat flour
8g (2.5 tsp) baking soda
7g (1.5 tsp) baking powder
11g (1 tsp) Kosher salt
283g (1 ½ cups) chocolate chips
Cream the butter, sugars, and salt until fluffy and combined
Add sourdough starter & egg yolks and mix until just combined
In a separate bowl, combine flours, baking soda, and baking powder, whisking to combine
Add flour mixture to creamed butter, mix until just combined
Add chocolate chips and mix to distribute
If you have the patience and fortitude, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and rest it in the fridge for 24-48 hours. Your taste buds will thank you for the even tastier cookies, sort of like a stew that rests overnight. If you can’t wait, I understand. Either way continue to step 7.
Preheat oven to 375* F
Scoop into 20 large cookie dough balls, fitting 6 on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, rotating pans halfway through baking. You want the tops of the cookies to be just golden. Err on the side of under-baked rather than over!
Cool cookies on a rack
When I stopped by the grocery store a couple weeks ago, the only thing left in the meat department was a 12lb pork shoulder. Perfect! We love pulled pork. The problem was that the store was out of hamburger buns for pulled pork sandwiches. Luckily, it turns out that hamburger buns are both super easy to make and incredibly delicious when made from scratch – if you’re lucky enough to have yeast and flour on hand.
170g – 227g (¾ – 1 cup) warm water (not hot!)
28g (2 tbsp) softened butter
1 large egg
418g (3 ½ cups) all-purpose flour
50g (¼) cup sugar
8g (1 ½ tsp) Kosher salt
9g (2 ½ tsp) instant yeast
Mix and knead all ingredients until you form a soft and smooth dough. If your home is humid, hold back on some of the water, if it’s dry, use it all. The dough should not be sticky when smooth, so add a little flour if it is, or add a little water if it’s not coming together
Cover and let rise until doubled, usually 1-2 hours depending on the room temperature
Turn out the dough onto the counter and shape into 8 round balls. Place on a greased or parchment-lined baking sheet and flatten to about 3 inches across. Here you have two options. Either cover and let them proof at room temperature for about an hour until puffy, or cover and put in the fridge overnight. Proofed overnight, the buns will be tastier!
Preheat oven to 375* F
Right before baking, brush with melted butter.
Bake for 15-18 minutes until golden brown.
Brush again with melted butter right when the buns come out of the oven.