King Tut’s Hamburger Buns & 5 Bread Baking Tips

Pillowy soft, made golden with Kamut wheat, these are the perfect dinner rolls or hamburger buns….

I found a new grain at a whole foods store and fell in love with the name:  Kamut.

My hard white wheat is on the left, the Kamut is on the right.

What is Kamut?

It is Khorasan wheat, a close relative to durum wheat, with a very high protein content (40% more protein than traditional wheat).  It is considered a high energy wheat,  and loses very little nutritional content when ground.  Many stories surround the origin of this wheat; one says this grain was found in the tombs of ancient Egyptian Pharaohs, hence the popular nickname, “King Tut’s Wheat.”

This wheat has a golden color and a buttery, sweet taste.  You can cut down the amount of sugar in your wheat recipes when you use Kamut.

I started with my favorite honey whole wheat hamburger bun recipe and ground the Kamut on the bread setting of my WonderMill grain mill.

The flour is a light golden color and smells so good…

I have some great tips to share with you that will improve your bread baking, especially with whole wheat flour.

TIP #1:  Make sure your ingredients are between 100°-110°F.  If hotter than this, you can kill your yeast.  I put my cold eggs into a glass and fill it with HOT tap water and let it sit for 10 minutes.

Water, milk, oil and honey are combined in a microwave safe measuring cup.  I put this in the microwave for 3 minutes on 50% power, give it a stir and take its temperature.

TIP #2: Use Vital Wheat Gluten with your wheat breads.  This is a whole wheat protein powder that will improve the texture, shape, volume, and shelf life of your bread.  I only use 1 Tablespoon for every 4-5 cups of flour.

TIP #3: Try “Sponging” your dough.  This means combining at least half of your wheat flour with your yeast, vital wheat gluten, and salt with ALL of your wet ingredients (milk, water, oil, honey and eggs) and letting it sit for 20-30 minutes. The wheat flour acts like a “sponge,” soaking up all the wet ingredients.

Sponging accomplishes two things: activates your yeast, and softens the bran in your wheat, giving your bread a lighter texture. You should see little, tiny, bubbles on the surface of your dough, indicating that your yeast is alive and active.

TIP #4: Knead your dough longer.  Wheat breads need a longer kneading time, at least 10 minutes or longer by electric mixer.

Add the rest of your wheat flour and knead until the dough clings to the hook, and almost cleans the sides.  The dough should feel smooth, elastic, tacky, but not sticky.

TIP #5: Use the “windowpane test.” Take a small piece of dough and gently stretch it between your fingers.  If you are able to pull it without it tearing in the middle and see some light shine through it, you have passed the test for gluten development.  If the dough tears in the middle, knead it a couple of minutes longer.

Why is the windowpane test important?  It lets you know if you have enough gluten development in your dough to give your bread structure, great rise, crust, and crumb. Breads without this gluten development are usually more dense.

Lightly spray a piece of plastic wrap, cover your dough and let it rise in a warm place till double in size.

I love to use a knotted “rosette” shape for my hamburger buns.  It is as simple as tying a knot. After shaping, and rising in the pan, I spritz the rolls with water and sprinkle chopped rolled oats on top.

The rolls bake to a golden brown and are left to cool.

The result?

A light, buttery, and slightly sweet roll with an even crumb that rivals any that I have made with white wheat.   The rolls taste great with a juicy homemade beef patty or a marinated chicken breast.

I think King Tut would be happy with this hamburger bun, don’t you think?

Teriyaki Pineapple Burgers with homemade burger patties

King Tut’s Hamburger Buns

  • 5 – 5 1/2 cups Kamut flour
  • 1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1 Tablespoon Vital Wheat Gluten
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1/3 cup vegetable or canola oil, butter or margarine
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 2 eggs, room temperature

Bring cold eggs to room temperature by placing whole, uncracked eggs into a bowl or drinking glass and fill with hot tap water.  Let sit for 10 minutes.  Drain water.

Put 3 cups of wheat flour into the bowl of electric mixer.  Add yeast, gluten, and salt.  Mix.

In a separate, microwave safe bowl, combine milk, water, oil and honey.  Microwave for 3 minutes, power 50%.  Temperature should be between 100°-110°F.  Add eggs and pour mixture over wheat flour.  Stir and let mixture sit covered, for 20-30 minutes. (Sponging)

Add rest of flour and knead for 10 minutes.  Dough should cling to the dough hook, almost clean the sides of the bowl, be soft and tacky, but not sticky.  Stretch a small piece of dough between your fingers.  Dough should give a “windowpane” without tearing in the middle and allow light to show through.

Cover dough with a piece of lightly oiled plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until double in size, 30 – 60 minutes.

Shape as desired.  This recipe makes 12 large hamburger buns.  Put rolls on a lightly greased baking sheet, Silpat or parchment paper.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rolls rise till double, about 30-45 minutes.

Bake in a 350°F oven for 18-20 minutes.

Let cool on a wire rack, split and toast for your favorite hamburger.

About Frieda Loves Bread

I grew up in a home where bread was baked weekly. Wanting the same home baked goodness for my family, I learned quickly that making a soft, crusty loaf of bread required more than simply following a basic recipe. I am discovering that grinding my own grain provides a higher quality of baked goods in taste, texture, and nutrients. I am the mother of two grown boys, share my love of baking comfort foods by blogging and teaching bread classes locally.

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This challenge encouraged me to try other grains and experiment with new recipes! Previously, I had only used my grain mill for grinding wheat and corn. My personal goals in this challenge were to:
1) grind a variety of grains, and 2) make recipes other than bread. To date, I have ground seven different grains and have discovered new recipes to add to my favorites. Participation in this challenge has also introduced me to a group of talented bloggers with many more recipes and grains to explore!

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5 Responses to King Tut’s Hamburger Buns & 5 Bread Baking Tips

  1. Erin R. says:

    Wow, beautiful! I just bought some sorghum grain to fiddle around with but will definitely pick up some kamut this weekend to make these buns. So many grains, so little stomach space…

  2. farmer paul says:

    Best whole-grain hamburger bun recipe I’ve ever tried. Kamut is well suited to making buns. Thanks also for the tips on shaping them! I’ve never managed to make such pretty-looking, light whole-grain buns before.

    I did make some substitutions: In our baking, we use a sourdough starter instead of active dry yeast – works the same except rising takes about 8 hours instead of 1-2. Also, we don’t add the Vital Wheat Gluten as we are trying to go wheat-free around here. Turns out I didn’t need it anyway. The dough passed the windowpane test easily after kneading it for a while. I even used bacon fat in the ingredients instead of butter! Everything worked out great.

  3. KAMUT® Brand khorasan is an organic, non-genetically modified, ancient wheat variety similar to durum. In 1990, “KAMUT” was registered as a trademark by the Quinn family in order to support organic farming and preserve the ancient khorasan wheat variety. Under the KAMUT® Brand name, khorasan wheat must always be grown organically, never be hybridized or modified, and contain high levels of purity and nutrition. Today, Kamut International owns and has registered the KAMUT® trademark in over 40 countries, and is responsible for protection and marketing of all KAMUT® Brand khorasan wheat throughout the world.

    KAMUT® Brand khorasan wheat is grown on dryland certified organic farms primarily in Montana, Alberta, and Saskatchewan. The grain is prized by consumers who appreciate the grain for its high energy nutrition, easy digestibility, nutty/buttery taste, and firm texture. KAMUT® khorasan wheat is higher in protein, selenium, amino acids, and Vitamin E than most modern wheat and contains essential minerals such as magnesium and zinc. It is used as whole grain berries, whole grain flour, white flour, flakes, and puffs to make a variety of products. Some specific benefits of using KAMUT® khorasan are receiving more nutrients, protein, and taste than most commonly consumed whole wheat – plus supporting organic agriculture and helping to preserve an ancient grain.

    KAMUT® khorasan is a variety of wheat thus has gluten content. A lot of people who are not able to tolerate wheat tell us that they are able to tolerate KAMUT® khorasan wheat. KI has ongoing research to understand why – it is our theory that because KAMUT® khorasan is an ancient grain, it retains the qualities that made it desirable so many years ago.

    Please visit the Kamut International website at to learn more. And follow us on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with the latest news!

    My kind regards – Jamie

    Jamie Ryan Lockman | Regional Director – North America
    Kamut International, Ltd.
    P.O. Box 4903 | Missoula, MT 59806 | USA
    406.251.9418 phone | 406.251.9420 fax |

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