I too have struggled to find examples of doing more complex things in Hugo. It's such a versatile tool that it's probably pretty hard to document everything in an approachable way.
I may write up how I set up the Hugo portion of the knowledge base as it has worked quite well. If I do, you can subscribe here to make sure you see it: https://masnick.blog/subscribe/
Thanks for the response, I appreciate it and I'm really glad you took the time to post your original answer. It's a real help to me in ways I didn't expect when I clicked into this thread.