They are German in origin and I understand that “Kummel” means caraway seeds while “Weck” from “wecken” which means roll (in southern Germany, “brötchen” in the north). It seems that in Buffalo (New York), these rolls are used to make a speciality sandwich called the "Beef on Weck", with thinly sliced rare roast beef and horseradish which is typically served with fries and a dill pickle.
According to a story, the origin of the Beef on Weck sandwich goes back to the 1800s. It seems a German immigrant ran a bar on the Buffalo waterfront and he was looking a way to increase his sales. He hit upon the idea of selling his hungry customers roast beef in the Kummelweck roll. The salt would make them thirstier and buy more beer in the bargain. I have no idea if he sold more beer than before, but his sandwich become so popular that it became a food icon in Buffalo!
Here's a video demonstration of how to make these rolls.
Kummelweck (Kimmelweck) Rolls(Adapted from Jewish Food)Ingredients:2 1/2 tsp active dry yeast1/2 cup warm water1/2 cup warm milk2 bsp oil1 tbsp honey1 egg white (optional)1 1/2 tsp salt3 to 3 1/4 cups bread flour*Egg wash (optional)Coarse sea salt and caraway seedsMethod:*To substitute for bread flour add 1 tbsp of vital wheat gluten to 2 to 3 cups of all-purpose flour.Mix together the warm water and the warm milk and stir in the yeast. Let it sit aside for about 5 minutes. Knead by hand or with the machine.In the bowl of your machine, combine the yeast mixture, oil, honey, the egg white and stir.Now add the salt and about 2 1/2 cups of flour and knead, adding as much more flour as required till you have a smooth and elastic dough that is tacky but not sticky. Shape the dough into a ball, and place it in an oiled bowl. Cover loosely with cling film and let rise for about an hour, until it is almost double in volume.Deflate the dough well (not kneading), shape into a round and and allow it to rise, covered, for 30 minutes more.Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and shape each into a smooth ball, then slightly flatten it. Place them on lightly greased or parchment lined baking sheets. Spray or lightly brush with oil, loosely cover and let the dough rise for 30 more minutes. Brush with eggwash (or something else that will make sure the topping sticks when baking), then cut slits ( like an +) on the top using a sharp blade or scissors.Sprinkle the top of the rolls with sea salt and caraway seeds, and then mist with water. Bake the rolls at 220C (425F) for 5 minutes and then quickly mist with water again making sure you don’t keep the oven door open for too long.Bake for another 20 minutes or so until they’re brown and done. Cool on a wire rack. This recipe makes 8 large burger bun sized rolls.
I topped it with a little more Hummus and some freshly crushed pepper and my sandwich was done. The salt and caraway (shahjeera in my case) was more than enough seasoning so I didn't add anything more.