Cheeseburger Buns

My mom called me last week and tried to order a pizza for delivery. She says it’s not fair to post all these recipes and pictures and she doesn’t get to eat any. So this weekend I decided I would make dinner for my family, and talked my sister Jamie into helping. We decided to make these Cheeseburger Buns I found in a Taste of Home magazine, with a few minor changes.  It seemed like it would be a fun one to make with kids, and the taste is very kid friendly too. My sister enjoyed kneading the dough, though it was pretty sticky business at first! She also had fun rolling out the dough and pinching it together over the fillings.

1 pkg rapid rise yeast
1/3 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
1/3 cup warm milk (110° to 115°)
1/8 cup sugar
1/8 cup shortening
1 egg
1 tsp salt
2 to 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 pound ground beef or ground turkey
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 pound Velveeta Cheese, cubed
salt and pepper to taste
1 to 2 tbsp butter, melted

Makes about 1 dozen

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, sugar, shortening, egg, salt and 1 1/2 cups flour; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook the beef, onion, salt and pepper over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Add cheese; cook and stir until cheese is melted. Remove from the heat.
Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Roll each portion into a rectangle about 12-in. x 8-in.; cut each into six squares. Place 1/4 cup meat mixture in the center of each square. Bring corners together in the center and pinch to seal.
Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. Bake at 400° for 9-11 minutes or until lightly browned. Brush with butter. Serve warm with your favorite cheeseburger toppings.

I was impressed with the flavor and texture of the bun, it was nice and soft just like a hamburger bun. Since we used the rapid rise yeast the dough was ready by the time the filling was cooked. The filling was pretty simple and definately hit the spot for a cheeseburger craving.

My mom called and said she thought these would be good to try with sloppy joe filling.  I think that she means I should come over there and try it!

– Jodi

Chocolate Marble Banana Bread

This week I found myself with a few over ripe bananas, so Scott requested banana bread. Regular banana bread was not very exciting, so I looked around a bit. Chocolate in banana bread sounded like fun, so I decided we’d give it a try. This recipe came out great, very moist and fluffy. Like a nice mix of chocolate cake and banana bread.  We had it warm with a little butter right away, but it was just as good after it cooled just by itself.

1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 ripe large bananas, mashed well (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 and place oven rack to middle position. Grease and flour the bottom and sides of a loaf pan. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt. Set aside.
In a medium-sized bowl combine the mashed bananas, eggs, melted butter, and vanilla. With a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, lightly fold the banana mixture into the dry ingredients just until combined and the batter is thick and chunky. Don’t over mix the batter, you do not want it smooth. Over mixing the batter will yield tough, rubbery bread.
Place chocolate chips in a medium microwave-safe bowl, and microwave 1 minute or until almost melted, stirring until smooth. Cool slightly. Add 1 cup batter to chocolate, stirring until well combined.
Spoon chocolate batter alternately with plain batter into loaf pan. Swirl batters together using a knife.  Bake until bread is golden brown and a  toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 55 to 60 minutes. Place on a wire rack to cool and then remove the bread from the pan.

I dropped off a chunk with my mom last night, she’s always complaining that she doesn’t get to eat the things I’m blogging about. She has somehow managed to keep my choco-holic stepdad from trying it, and it’s a good thing, or there’d be none left!
– Jodi

Stud Muffin

About a year ago I got the book The Bread Bible and I read through a lot of the recipes and looked over the pictures. Right away I knew I wanted to bake more bread, but I also found one recipe that really stuck in my head- the Stud Muffin. This is a bread that is muffin shaped and the top is studded with cheese. Part of the description said “…a crumb that is almost lacy, with many medium-sized pockets that become coated with melted Gruyere.” I love bread anyways, but line the holes with cheese and I’m hooked. Plus how fun is it to say I made my own stud muffin?! 🙂

I’ve been meaning to make this one since then, but just recently got the perfect dish for baking it up in. When I saw the 2 qt souffle dish on sale and Marshall’s my mind immediately went to that line from the book. This bread has a long rise, but was not hard to make. Mine sank just a little in the center, maybe because I really couldn’t wait for it to cool properly before digging in.

1 cup + 1 1/2 tbsp unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 tsp instant yeast
3/4 cup water at room temp

Place flour, yeast and water in medium bowl. Whisk until very smooth, about 2 minutes. It will be like a thick batter. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, Cover tightly with plastic wrap and allow it to stand for 1 to 4 hours at room temperature.

2 oz Parmigiano-Reggiano (I used Parmesan)
2 oz Romano cheese
2 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp instant yeast
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp black pepper
4 tbsp unsalted butter
1/2 cup water at room temp
1 large egg
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp Gruyere cheese, cut into 1/4 in chunks

Use either a grater or a food processor to finely grate the Parmesan and Romano cheeses. In a measuring cup with a spout whisk together the water and egg.
In a medium bowl, whisk together all but 1/4 cup of the flour, yeast, salt and pepper. Sprinkle this over the starter. Add the softened butter and mix with the mixer’s dough hook on low speed while gradually adding the water/egg mixture until the flour is moistened, about 1 minute. Add the parmesan and romano cheeses, raise the mixer speed to medium and kneed the dough for 5 minutes or until elastic. The dough should be slightly sticky. If it doesn’t pull away from the bowl, beat in some or all of the remaining flour.
Empty the dough onto a lightly floured counter and flatten it into a rectangle. Press 1/2 cup of the gruyere into the dough, roll it up, and knead it to incorporate.
Place the dough in a medium/large bowl lightly greased with cooking spray. Push down dough and lightly spray the top. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Refrigerate the dough, allowing to chill for at least 8 hours or up to 2 days to firm and develop flavor. Pat it down 2 or 3 times after the first hour or two until it stops rising.

Turn the dough out onto a counter and knead it lightly. Round into a ball, push it down into the souffle dish; it will fill it about halfway. Cover lightly with a piece of wax paper and let it rise in a warm area until it almost triples, about 3 to 4 hours. The center should be 1/2 to 1 inch above the top of the dish.
Preheat the oven to 350 about 45 minutes before baking. Have an oven shelf at the lowest level and place a baking sheet lined with foil on it before baking.
Brush the surface of the dough with a lightly beaten egg, being careful not to brush it over the top of the dish (which would impede rising). Gently insert the remaining 2 tbsp gruyere cubes into the dough, leaving them still visible.
Place the dish on the hot baking sheet. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until the bread is golden and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.

Remove the dish from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes. With the tip of a sharp knife, loosen the sides of the bread where the cheese may have crusted on. Unmold the bread on a soft towel on the counter to finish cooling. This will prevent the soft fragile sides from collapsing; turn it a few times to speed cooling. It will take about 1 hour to cool completely.

The book recommends serving this with some prosciutto. I chose to serve it with soup, and Scott enjoyed some with just a little butter as a snack. I was so excited when I first cut in and saw the cheese really does line the little holes in the bread. This is one I will definitely make again, but probably only occasionally as I don’t tend to have this much cheese on hand and I’m not usually as patient as waiting a whole day to see how it will come out!

– Jodi

Peanut Butter Banana Bread

I’ve had a few bananas on my counter for about a week now, and of course they’re turning browner every day. Last night I decided Banana Bread was in order. I found this recipe on allrecipes, but it called for nuts. I’ve never really cared for nuts in my food, so I left those out. The peanut butter is not very noticeable in the bread, but does give it a mild nutty flavor without the actual chunks of nuts.


  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 2 bananas, mashed
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

Preheat oven to 325. Lightly grease a 5×9 inch loaf pan.

In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs; beat well. Stir in peanut butter, bananas, flour and baking soda until blended. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake at 325 for 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean. Remove to a wire rack to cool.

This bread came together very quickly, though it does bake for a long time. It smelled great while it was baking, I kept hearing “is it ready yet?”. It came out moist and full of banana flavor. Well worth the wait! 🙂
– Jodi

Apple Cinnamon Bread

Last week I made a Braided Onion Loaf that turned out very well. I thought I’d play with the fillings on this bread a little bit to see what other kinds of bread braids I could make. Since I still have way more apples than I know what to do with I wanted to incorporate them somehow. I decided on a sweet apple cinnamon filled bread. I used the same dough as last week, but to keep it simple I’m posting that info here too.

1 pkg (1/4 oz) active dry yeast
3/4 cup warm water
1/2 cup warm milk
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 egg
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
4 to 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

2 apples finely diced, about 2 cups
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp apple pie spice (I use this recipe)
1/4 cup butter, softened

Topping (approximate measurements here, I just threw this together):
3-4 tbsp melted butter
1 tsp brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, butter, egg, sugar, salt, and 2 cups flour; beat until smooth. Add enough of the remaining flour to form a soft dough. Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

In a small bowl, combine the filling ingredients. Punch dough down; turn onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into thirds. Roll each portion into a rectangle about 20 in X 4 in. Roll up jelly-roll style, starting from a long side.

Place ropes on a baking sheet lined with either parchment or a silicone baking mat; braid. Pinch ends to seal and tuck under. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Brush with melted butter/Topping above, remove from pan onto wire rack.
This was much messier coming out of the oven than the onion loaf, probably because it was a much moister filling. Definitely use something to line the pan because the butter/brown sugar does leak a little around the edges and caramelize. It was also a much heavier loaf than last week’s and a little difficult to move from the pan to the rack without it separating. But, that said, this was totally worth the effort. The bread is chewy and moist with a lot of apple cinnamon flavor. Perfect for snacking on this very chilly fall Sunday!

– Jodi

P.S. I couldn’t resist sharing this little picture of my kitchen “helpers”! They’re always waiting to see if I’ll drop anything, and they are loving all the apples around here. 🙂