These soft sourdough potato buns call for the addition of an unapologetically high amount of baked and then riced potato. This fluffy potato mess brings all the gelatinized starches of the baked potato straight into the dough mix1, imparting the best kind of softness to the baked buns. When you bake a dough with an excess of starches, you transform the result into something delicate and light beyond what you might expect. Right out of the oven, I feared one might disappear straight into my mouth. And while that may or may not have happened in my last test bake, I’m sure you’re going to love this recipe.
In eating these, you’ll find the flavor of potato isn’t all that apparent. But our friend, the tuber, has a more critical role: improving the texture. And this amplified texture plays so well with the running flavor undercurrent we come to expect from natural fermentation: subtle complexity, a touch of sourness, heightened “wheaty” flavors, and thanks to the small bit of sugar, the slightest suggestion of sweetness.
In a similar fashion to adding scalded flour, or tangzhong.↩