St. Galler Handbürlis (rolls)

Written by  in category 
December 11, 2013
Homemade St. Galler Handbuerlis!

Homemade St. Galler Handbuerlis!

One of the things I miss a lot about living in Switzerland (and specifically the canton of St. Gallen) is eating a St. Galler Bratwurst and Bürli. This was a staple meal when out on the town or even for a snack. As any Swiss will tell you, a real Bratwurst can only come from St. Gallä. I must say that after having many variations of this sausage in the US, Germany, and even other areas in Switzerland I have to agree! There’s just something special about how they make them there. A crunchy roll will always come with the Bratwurst, and they call these St. Galler Handbürli and they are delicious! Knusprig (crunchy) on the outside and chewy on the inside. Since baking, and bread in particular, is one of my hobbies I thought I’d give making some Bürlis at home a try. One of the main challenges with making Swiss breads in the US is the selection and types of flour. I didn’t realize the variations on flour until I lived in Europe. Before then I was pretty limited to all-purpose white and whole wheat. There’s a whole other level of options in Switzerland, which give each particular bread its special flavor. Unfortunately here in the US, most of those are unavailable and so I went into this with fairly low expectations on recreating an authentic tasting Bürli. There were two sources that I used for the recipe –
  1. One from The Fresh Loaf (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/24220/my-first-kinda-sorry-attempt-swiss-quotst-gallerbuerliquot) and
  2. One from a Swiss/German baking forum (http://brotbackforum.iphpbb3.com/forum/77934371nx46130/mit-hefe-f22/stgaller-buerli-t3259.html).
I ended up using a mix of all-purpose and whole wheat, with an overnight preferment.  In reality, Ruchmehl and Halbweissmehl should be used, which are just not available here. One important part of baking these is to use steam to build a good crust. As my oven doesn’t have steam, I just put a pot of water in the oven while it pre-heated and while the rolls baked.
Homemade St. Galler Handbuerlis!

Homemade St. Galler Handbuerlis!

Overall, I think the Bürlis were a success – they actually looked pretty close to the real thing (note they must comes in pairs J)! My husband also claimed success and said he loved them. We both agreed they didn’t have the exact flavor, but they were still mighty tasty! I also don’t think the texture on the inside was quite right. They were a bit more crumbly than they should have been and I think this is related to the gluten not developing enough (the house was cold while the dough was rising) so that is something I’ll have to experiment with in the future. But for now, these made for a delicious cheese/olive/bread dinner and Z’morge (breakfast) the next day. Now if we only had some authentic St. Galler Bratwurst!
The beginnings of a delicious Zmorge!

The beginnings of a delicious Zmorge!

No Responses

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *