“…on the fourth day he comes into the room with an honest-to-God hamburger on a hot, homemade bun and a side of roasted potatoes. It’s the first real food I’ve had since escaping Camp Ashpit. It’s also a freaking hamburger, which I haven’t tasted since the Arrival and which, I think I’ve pointed out, I was willing to kill for.”
Here’s my recreation of a cozy, meaty, apocalypse worthy burger as inspired by The 5th Wave, Evan’s homemade buns included. The best part? Each element is super easy, including the buns. See my book review here!
I’m sorry if Evan wasn’t there to personally deliver your burger. On the bright side, at least you’re not sitting in bed recovering from a gunshot wound.
No-Knead Hamburger Buns
There’s nothing worse than wanting to make homemade bread and realizing that if you wish to make it for a post-work dinner, you won’t be eating until 9 p.m. This recipe is so flexible because it rises in the fridge. You can make it in the morning before you leave for the day and cook them when you get home. And it’s no-knead so the assembly is fast and easy. I imagine Evan would have found it particularly helpful. Spend the morning taking care of Cassie, whip up his bread dough, head out to slaughter some
humans animals, and back home to finish off the bread. See? Flexible.
Adapted from the Joy of Cooking
1/4 cup of warm water
1 packet (2 and 1/4 teaspoons) yeast
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
2 tablespoons sugar
1 and 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 cup steaming hot water
1 large egg
3 and 1/4 cup of unbleached all-purpose flour + extra for dusting
- In a liquid measuring cup combine 1/4 cup of warm water with a packet of yeast (or 2 ¼ teaspoons of yeast). Set aside and allow yeast to dissolve.
- Cube a half stick of butter and place in large bowl. Add 2T of sugar and 1 and 1/4t of salt. Then pour 1 cup of steaming hot water over the bowl. Wisk until the butter, sugar, and salt are dissolved.
- Add the yeast mixture. Now beat in 1 large egg.
- Add 3 and 1/4 cups of flour to your mixture. Mix with a rubber spatula.
- The dough will be quite wet and will not hold its form. That’s okay. Transfer the dough to a large greased bowl and cover with greased plastic wrap.
- Let rise in the fridge for 2 to 12 hours.
- Prepare a baking sheet. I prefer to lay parchment paper on my baking sheets. Greasing is fine.
- After your dough has risen to double its size, pull from the fridge and sprinkle the top with flour. Punch the dough down and roll it into a thick rope on a large and lightly floured surface. Cut the dough into 10 equal pieces.
- Keep your fingertips well floured for this part! The dough will be quite sticky. Pick up each section of dough and while cupping it in one palm, use your other hand to rotate the ball of dough in clockwise circles while tucking the edges underneath. Do this quickly and don’t put too much thought into it. Once you have a round ball, place it on the cookie sheet. Repeat for all 10 rolls, giving the rolls ample distance on the cookie sheet. I placed 5 rolls on each sheet and they were still a little tight.
- Preheat oven to 425°
- Allow buns to rise for 30-45 minutes until they’re double in size. Many hamburger bun recipes recommend adding an egg wash before baking, only for appearances sake. The egg wash destroyed my rise when I tried it during trial runs, so I wouldn’t recommend it.
- Bake for 15-18 minutes and enjoy!
Roasted Sweet Potatoes
1 sweet potato
1/2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 tablespoon rosemary
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon oregano
Cracked pepper for seasoning
- Preheat the oven to 450°
- Prepare a baking sheet. I prefer to lay down parchment paper. Greasing is fine.
- Cube 1 sweet potato.
- Drizzle with 1/2 T olive oil. Toss with 1/2 T rosemary, 1/2 t salt, 1/4 t oregano, and cracked pepper.
- Bake for 35 minutes. Give the potatoes a stir half-way through the cook time. Test with fork to see that the centers are soft.
Adapted from Bobby Flay
1 pound 20% lean hamburger meat
Salt and pepper
Toppings of your choice. Here’s what we used:
- Over easy eggs
- Pepperjack cheese
- Mayo, ketchup, spicy mustard
- Romaine Lettuce
- Begin heating a cast iron skillet on the stove. You will want it at medium heat. If it’s too hot, you’ll get a burnt coat surrounding a raw center.
- Weigh 4 ounces of ground beef. Shape into a patty, leaving a small depression in the center of the patty.
- Season each side of the patty with salt and pepper.
- Lay down the patties on the sizzling skillet. Don’t smash the burger! Just leave it. For 6 minutes. Then flip it and leave it again for 4 minutes. The timing depends on how big your burger is and how done you want it. It’s recommended with ground beef that you cook the burger all the way through. My first round I did 5 minutes the first side and 3 the second side. It was a very rare burger.
- You may place a slice of cheese on top of your burger during the last minute of cook time. I opted to put our sliced buns with cheese under the broiler for a minute.
- Place the burger on the bun and decorate with your toppings of choice.