For the bread
1 cup warm water
1 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 large egg
3 tbs. melted butter
3 tbs granulated sugar
1 1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp olive oil, for the oiling the bowl
For bread toppingn the bow
1 egg, beaten
1 tbs milk
optional: sesame seeds, thinly sliced onions, minced rosemary, coarse salt or a combination, like an
Line a baking sheet with parchment
Place yeast into bowl of stand mixer; whisk in 1/2 cup flour and warm water until smooth. Let stand until foamy, 10-15 minutes.
Whisk egg, melted butter, sugar and salt into yeast mixture, then add remaining 3 cups of flour. With dough hook attachment, knead the dough on low speed until soft and sticky 5-6 minutes, scraping sides if needed.
Transfer dough to floured work surface and with floured hands form the dough into a smooth round shape, gently tucking loose ends underneath. Wipe out mixer bowl, place olive oil and dough in the bowl and turn over several times until dough is well coated with the oil. Cover and let rise until doubled, approximatley 2 hours.
Transfer dough to a floured work surface and pat to flatten bubbles and form into a rectangle shape, cut dough into 8 equal pieces. Form each piece into a round shape and gently flatten on prepared baking sheet. Cover again and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 375.
Beat egg with the milk, then gently brush on top of the buns. Add optional toppings, if desired.
Bake in preheated oven until lightly browned on top 15-17 minutes. Buns will stick together, let cool completely, slice and serve.