These buns are bonkers! Jet black buns make a great photo at a Halloween party, but I think too much of this black bun starts feeling unappetizing. I like instead to make small slider buns, so then there is a better filling to bun ratio. You can find the activated charcoal online or in some health food stores. It’s a superfine powder, so be careful scooping, you don’t want to get this on the carpet!
Prep time: 30 minutes plus proofing time of about 2.5 hours
Cook time: 15-18 mins
Makes 16 buns
1 cup lukewarm water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into pieces
1 large egg
3 1/2 cups Bread Flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 tablespoons activated charcoal
1 egg yolk (for egg wash)
2 tablespoons sesame seeds and/or soft pretzel salt for topping
In the mixer bowl, stir together everything except the egg yolk for the wash. Mix with the dough hook for about 5 minutes, or until the mix is a smooth ball.
Sometimes the ball will be a few smaller balls. Pack then into one ball with your hands, then cover with a towel for about 1 hour or until its doubled in size.
Divide the dough into 16 pieces. Do your best to roll each piece into a smooth ball. It helps to kind of fold the dough over itself to make the top side of the bun a tight, smooth surface. Make sure you place it seam side down on the parchment.
Preheat over to 375.
Place buns onto two parchment lined baking sheets, 8 per sheet. Lightly cover and let rise for about 1.5 hours or until very puffy.
Lightly brush each bun with egg yolk (mix a yolk with a few drops of water). Add the sesame seeds or soft pretzel salt.
Place in oven, bake for about 15-18 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool on wire racks.