- Cooking Time: 25-30 minutes
- Servings: 8
- Preparation Time: 90 minutes
- 1 3/4 cups milk, warmed to 110 degrees F. (bathwater warm)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 3-3 1/2 cups bread flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Coarse salt for sprinkling
- Water Bath
- 7-8 cups water
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 4 tablespoons baking soda
- Place the warmed milk in a large mixing bowl. Stir in the olive oil and the yeast. Let this mixture stand for about 5 minutes or until it starts to foam (this way you know the yeast is working). Add three cups of the flour and the salt.
- Attach the dough hook and knead the dough for about 5 minutes, adding additional flour, if needed. The dough should nearly clean the sides of the bowl, but still be a little tacky. Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a lightly floured surface. Knead lightly, by hand, for about a minute until the dough is smooth and elastic.
- Place the dough in a well oiled bowl and turn it over so that both sides are oiled. Cover the bowl with a clean towel and let the dough rise in a draft-free area until it's doubled, about 45 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.; Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
- Punch the dough down and plop it on a floured surface ( I prefer my Silpat), then divide it into 8 pieces. Form each piece of dough into a ball, slightly flattened. Place the dough balls on the lined baking pan, cover and allow to rise for an additional 20 minutes.
- While the buns are rising, prepare the water bath. In a large pot, combine the water, salt, and baking soda; bring to a rolling boil. Gently drop the dough buns into the boiling water, two at a time, and let them "poach" for about 30 seconds on each side. Remove them with a slotted spoon and place them back on the lined baking pan. Using a serrated knife, cut 2-3 lines across each bun and sprinkle with course salt. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the buns are a deep brown. Transfer to a rack to cool.