Caramelized Onion and Aged Cheddar Buns 12 Steps
Caramelize onions: Use a heavy-bottomed pan and add olive oil and butter and let melt. Add sliced onions.
Stir to coat the onions with the oil and butter and on low to medium heat stir the onions with a wooden spoon to prevent burning.
Keep stirring constantly to prevent burning, lower heat further after the first 20 minutes, add your thyme leaves from thyme sprigs and add your minced garlic. Keep stirring for an additional 15-20 minutes until onions are nice and caramelized, deep brown and have reduced in volume. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside to cool. The caramelized onions should be jammy.
You may knead your dough by hand or use a stand mixer. In a bowl add yeast to lukewarm milk and whisk in the egg. Add in dry ingredients and knead by hand for 5 minutes or let machine run for about 3 minutes. Add soft butter to the dough and keep kneading until it is mixed into the dough and has a smooth surface (total of about 8 minutes with machine or 10 minutes by hand).
Let rise for 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on temperature of kitchen. It should almost double in size.
Place the dough on a floured surface, punch down if necessary and roll into a rectangle of approximately 30 cm x 15 cm. Spread the filling (cooled caramelized onion) onto the entire surface including the edges. You want the caramelized onion to cover the entire surface but you don't want it so thick that it becomes too difficult to fold dough. Use your discretion. Sprinkle grated aged cheddar cheese on top of onion and fold the dough, first 1/3 from the long end, and 1/3 from the other long end, you should have 3 layers. Roll the dough until it measures approximately 15 cm x 15 cm.
Cut the dough into 8 even long strips. Twist each piece and roll up the twisted dough into a little bun and tuck the end in the middle on top or at the bottom of the bun.
Space out the bun on a parchment lined baking tray. Let rise for 30-45 minutes.
Preheat oven to 390°F.
Whisk 1 egg and 1 tablespoon of milk together and brush the egg wash over the buns evenly.
Sprinkle with aged cheddar, bake buns for 15-20 minutes until puffed and golden brown.
Optional: Melt 2 tablespoons of salted butter and mix with chopped parsley and drizzle over buns.