German in origin, the Kummelweck (Kimmelweck) yeasted bread roll is a hard bread roll (weck) much like the Kaiser roll, and is traditionally topped with coarse salt and caraway (pummel) seed before baking. Unique to Buffalo, New York, these rolls are filled with thinly sliced rare roast beef, slathered with pungent horseradish and served with a huge Kosher dill on the side. It is said you can tell a native Buffalonian by the amount of horseradish he or she puts on the sandwich.
“Beef on a Weck” was created by Joe Gohn, who just before the start of the 1901 Pan American Exposition in Buffalo, purchased a small saloon he named the Delaware House. It was located near one of the main entrances to the Exposition. He enlarged the saloon to ten bedrooms and a sitting room in order to obtain a whiskey license. With so much traffic from the trolleys dropping people off for the exposition, Joe decided that the hungry travelers needed food and drink before going to the Exposition, thus the “beef on a weck” was created. The German baker working for him suggested coarse salt and caraway seed as was done in Germany garnish the top of these crusty rolls. The sandwiches were a rage! Source
Kummelweck is the bread of the month for March chosen by Aparna who adapted the recipe from this link. The recipe makes 8 burger sized buns, but can be made smaller, if desired. I processed my dough in the bread machine which with this batch of dough, I wore out my old machine! Time for a newer one! It has served me well for nearly 10 or more years.
Bread Machine Version
2-1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast (bread machine yeast, if using a bread machine to process the dough)
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup warm milk
2 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon honey
1 egg white (optional)
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
3-3 1/4 cups bread flour, or all-purpose flour with 1 tablespoon vital wheat gluten added)
Egg wash, optional
Coarse salt and caraway seeds
In the pan of your bread machine, add all ingredients according to the manufacturer’s instructions for your machine. Process on the dough cycle. When finished, remove the dough to a lightly floured surface, flatten and let rest for 5-10 minutes.
Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces, shape into a ball, slightly flat and place on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet. Spray or lightly brush with oil, then loosely cover. Let rise for 30 minutes. Brush with the egg wash, then cut slits like a + on the top of the rolls using a sharp knife or scissors. Sprinkle the tops of the rolls with the coarse salt and caraway seeds, then mist with water.
Bake the rolls in a pre-heated 425°F (220C) oven for 5 minutes. Quickly open oven door and is with water again. Bake for another 20 minutes or so until they are browned and done.
Apart suggests you try some different versions of this recipe. With the same dough, you can make a Vienna Loaf or Salt and Pepper Sticks. Following Aparna’s recipe, not the bread machine version. If using the bread machine, omit the second rise.
For the Vienna Loaf:
Follow the above recipe, but with the following changes-
After the second rise, divide the dough in half and shape each half into an oval with tapered ends. After the final rise, apply the egg wash and then slash the top with a1/2-inch deep lengthwise slit. Leave our the salt and caraway seeds. Bake 400°F (200C) for about 35 minutes, including the 5 minutes after spritzing with water.
For the Salt and Pepper Sticks:
Again follow the recipe as above, but make the following changes-
Leave out the second rise and do only the first rise. Divide dough into 13 equal pieces. Roll each piece into a 12-inch rope of even thickness and place them 1-1/2 inches apart on the prepared baking sheet. Let rise 30 minutes. Apply the egg wash, but do not make any cuts. Sprinkle with the coarse sea salt and cracked black pepper. Do not spritz with water when baking and bake 15-20 minutes.
The black and white image above is my contribution to Black and White Wednesday #161,hosted this week by our lovely and talented admin, Cinzia of CindyStar Blog. The black and white Wednesday event is a great way to show off your monochrome culinary related images.
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