These are my Grandma’s rolls in that I follow her handwritten recipe card to make them. I have a feeling it was a popular recipe in that era but to me the recipe is my Grandma’s.
It calls for the simplest of ingredients: flour, yeast, sugar, salt, milk, eggs and butter. The butter is actually an update of mine, as the original did call for shortening but I am not in the habit of using shortening. This recipe also calls for “scalding” the milk. I had to look up exactly how to scald milk and found it can be done quite easily in the microwave. The reason behind scalding milk in baking is that the whey protein in milk can weaken gluten, causing dough not to rise properly. The scalding deactivates the protein. (source: The Kitchn)
With the butter, egg and sugar in the dough I guess these rolls could be considered a type of simplified brioche. They are absolutely delicious and I look forward to making them each holiday season starting at Thanksgiving. They are perfect for a novice baker because the dough can be completely made in a stand mixer and the dough is very forgiving to shape into rolls. As long as they are allowed enough time to rise they bake up perfect for me each time I’ve made them.
My daughter has started helping me make them and I think it’s cool to have her helping to make her great Grandma’s rolls. What is one of your cherished family recipes that you have to make each year at the holidays? Please tell me in the comments!
- 1/4 c. sugar
- 2 packets quick-rise yeast
- 2 c. milk, scalded and cooled to lukewarm (105 - 110 degrees Fahrenheit)
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 c. unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 6 c. all-purpose flour
- 3 t. salt
- Place milk in a microwave-safe glass measuring cup. Microwave for 4 minutes. Place in refrigerator and allow to cool to between 90 - 110 degrees.
- Melt butter and set aside to cool.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the 6 cups of flour and salt.
- Remove the milk from the refrigerator and whisk in the yeast and sugar. Allow to rest for 5 minutes.
- Beat the 2 eggs into the melted butter. Add the yeast, sugar and milk mixture to the flour and salt and knead on low speed until dough begins to come together. Stop mixer and add the eggs and melted butter. Knead the dough, scraping down the sides of the bowl if necessary, for 6 minutes.
- Remove the dough hook and bowl from the stand mixer. Cover the dough ball in the bowl loosely with a towel.
- Place the dough bowl in a warm spot and allow to rise for about 60 minutes or until dough is doubled in size.
- Gently push down on the dough to deflate. Place on clean counter and evenly divide dough into 8 log-shaped pieces, using a bench scraper or sharp knife.
- Cut each of the eight dough logs into four equal pieces, giving you 32 rolls. Gently cup each roll in your hand to "plump" them up a bit in the center.
- Place the rolls in well-greased baking dishes, spaced about 1/2-inch apart. Place dishes in a warm spot and cover loosely with a towel. Allow rolls to rise in baking dishes for 60 minutes more.
- Bake at 375 degrees for 14 - 18 minutes. Watch closely in the last few minutes to make sure tops don't over brown.
- Brush the tops of the rolls with melted butter when they come out of the oven. Serve warm.