Salty blue cheese, sweet onions, and juicy beef are a classic and addictive combination. But the real treat here are the homemade pretzel buns!
- 4 Teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1 Teaspoon sugar
- ½ Cup warm water
- 2 Cups warm whole milk
- 6 Tablespoons shortening
- 2 eggs
- 6 Cups white flour
- 1 Tablespoon oil
- ¼ Cup brown sugar
- 1½ Teaspoons salt
- ⅓ Cup baking soda
- 3 Cups warm water
- ¼ Cup melted butter
- ½ Teaspoon sea salt
- In a large mixing bowl (if you have a dough hook attachment), or a large food processor bowl with a dough blade, gently stir the yeast, sugar, and ½ Cup warm water until well mixed. Let stand for 5 minutes until the yeast begins to bubble.
- Add milk, shortening, eggs, oil, and 3 Cups of flour and slowly mix until smooth.
- Add brown sugar, salt, and the remaining 3 Cups of flour (adding 1 cup at a time), and mix on medium speed until the dough pulls together into a large ball. Make sure all the ingredients are blended. The dough will be very sticky.
- Lightly oil a large glass bowl, place the dough ball in, while gently allowing the entire ball to be coated with the oil.
- Cover with a lightweight kitchen towel, and place in a warm area (80-95°F.) until it has doubled in size (approximately 1 hour.)
- Uncover, and punch the dough down!
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a glass bowl, mix the baking soda with 3 Cups of warm water.
- Pull off a good handful of the dough and roll on a floured surface to form 7" long cylinders.
- Fold each cylinder into a loop (pretzel style). Don't form them too tightly — the dough will rise again to fill any gaps.
- Immerse each roll in the soda water and place on a baking sheet. (It's okay to have water drips under and around the rolls.)
- Brush the top of each unbaked roll with the melted butter, and sprinkle with some sea salt.
- Bake in preheated oven for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
- Remove and cool on a rack before slicing in half.
- Season the hamburger with salt, pepper, and a shake or two of hot sauce or Worcestershire sauce, form into patties.
- BBQ the burgers until thoroughly cooked.
- Turn off the grill; add blue cheese crumbles to the tops, close the grill cover and let sit until the cheese is melted.
- Sauté sliced sweet onions in butter over medium heat in a heavy bottom skillet.
- Set aside when they are browned.
- Place a blue cheese burger on one half of the bun, top with caramelized onions, top with the other half of the bun and serve immediately with your favorite side dish.
about the author…Carole Davenport is a Montana travel writer-photographer and content specialist on her blog https://divineviewtraveler.wordpress.com. She is co-authoring a soon-to-be-released cookbook #bitterrootfresh with her two daughters, filled with their original recipes and photographs.
Originally printed in the pages of Simply Family Magazine’s March 2018 issue.
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