Thursday, December 3, 2009

Fly off the plate rolls

Dinner rolls are incredibly important to me. They are a crucial part of Thanksgiving dinner and the process of eating the leftovers. They are necessary for making mashed potato and turkey sandwiches, which are essential to my happiness.

Biscuits are wonderful, but they don't do it for me on Thanksgiving. The perfect Thanksgiving roll has a light texture and a relatively soft crust. The flavor is delicate.

These were perfect.

rolls, fluffy
{rolls, fluffy}

Fly off the plate rolls from Prairie Home Breads (a go to resource for excellent bread)

Makes 16 rolls

1/4 cup plus 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 cups lukewarm water (I used milk instead)
1 package active dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
3 3/4 to 4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3 tablespoons instant nonfat dry milk (I left this out)
1 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, beaten
3 tablespoons melted butter

*Proof the yeast - add it to the lukewarm water (or milk) along with 1 1/2 tablespoons of sugar and let it sit for 5 minutes or so, until foamy.

*In a large bowl, stir together 3 cups of the flour, the salt, the dry milk powder (if using) and the rest of the sugar. Stir in the yeast mixture and then add the egg and the melted butter. Beat well.

*Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead for 7 - 10 minutes. The dough will be soft. Knead in up to 1 1/2 cups more flour until the dough is elastic and only slightly sticky. Place the dough in a large oiled bowl and turn to coat. Cover with a damp cloth and set aside to rise, about 45 - 60 minutes or until doubled in bulk.

*Grease two 9-inch round cake pans and set aside. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Cut the dough in half, then cut each piece in half again. Cut each quarter of dough into 4 equal portions and form each portion loosely into a ball. Place 7 rolls around the perimeter and 1 roll in the middle of each prepared pan. Cover with clean tea towels and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes. (If you need a bit more time, you can put the pans in the fridge after about 30 minutes. They'll hold there for a couple hours with no problem.)

*Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake the rolls for 15 minutes, or until risen and lightly browned. Serve warm.


  1. yum! you have inspired me to start making homemade bread! this looks delicious.

  2. I just wanted to say that I love your blog, I read it all the time and I just think it is so fun. The recipes are great too :)

  3. oh wow, I will be trying this for sure.

  4. mmm.. you're so right. dinner rolls are an absolute must at the thanksgiving feast. thanks for the must-try recipe!

    ps. have been soaking up all your holiday posts and stashing them away to read through again over the weekend. they've been superb.

  5. I want to try these immediately! I agree, rolls are perfect because they're lighter than biscuits; therefore, you can eat more of them! :) hehe

  6. i agree, rolls are a must-have for the thanksgiving table and i don't understand why some people leave them out!

  7. I hear youb with the importance of rolls. I decided to make that my main focus for Thanksgiving and ate four at dinner. My grandma dips her's in butter before they bake. That's why they're so good.

  8. Looks just delicious! I'll have to keep this in mind for Christmas!

  9. Oh, these look delicious! After making Anne's brioche last week, I'm just itching to bake more bread. I may bake these today, if work isn't too busy.

  10. Mmmm... they look yummy. I did pretty much this very same recipe for Thanksgiving as well, because I just wanted rolls from scratch. They were easy and turned out so great... who needs frozen rolls?!?

  11. they look amazing! will be trying them over the holidays :)

  12. Can I make these ahead of time? As the oven will be preoccupied most of Thusday, it would be great if I could make these on Wednesday, if the quality is still good!

    1. I haven't made these in long time, so I'm not 100% sure, sorry!

      In general, I think rolls are always much, much better if baked day of. If you need to make them the day before, I'd put them in ziploc bags once they're cool and then reheat them briefly in the oven right before serving.

      Good luck!

    2. Should have added this - my usual schedule is to make the dough for the rolls first thing in the morning. They can chill in the refrigerator for a while once shaped. Since the turkey needs to rest for 30 minutes before carving, I use that time to pop the rolls into the oven, along with a couple dishes that need be re-heated (sweet potatoes, dressing). Since the rolls cook in 30 minutes it usually works out perfectly to pull them out of the oven just as we're ready to carve and serve the turkey.

      But I feel you on the lack of oven space. I haven't found a perfect solution to get everything hot at the same time!

  13. I've been looking for a great roll recipe and it looks like this is it! Yummy!! Can't wait to make them!

  14. Do you use salted or unsalted butter for this recipe?

    1. Sorry - too late for Thanksgiving, but I use unsalted butter. I don't think that salted butter would make it too salty but I'm not sure.


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