BY JOANNE BRUNO
Dinner rolls are a point of contention in my family. To my understanding, they are meant to be eaten with dinner. That seems like the responsible, logical thing to do, right?
To everyone else…they’re more of an all-the-time, anytime, devour-all-of-them-mid-appetizers type of thing. At least, that’s what happened with these rolls. These rolls are soft and lighter than air, that taste like comfort mixed with a touch of butter. Needless to say, they were gone before the baked brie even hit the table.
Rather than make a fuss, I’ve decided to take it as a testament to just how heavenly they are. But just a warning – if you want these to actually last until dinner starts, you’d do best to hide them until the very last second lest you end up with a completely discombobulated appetizer course. I make no promises about how many may or may not be eaten preemptively if you don’t.
Photos: Joanne Bruno
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Makes 14 dinner rolls, adapted from Confections of a Foodie Bride
Servings: 14 dinner rolls
1 tbsp yeast
1 cup lukewarm water, divided
2 tbsp olive oil
1 large egg
3 tbsp sugar
3 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp melted butter
- In a small bowl, mix together the yeast with 1/4 cup of the water. Sprinkle in a pinch of sugar. If yeast mixture turns foamy within about 5 minutes, you are good to go. If not, then the yeast is probably dead.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the rest of the water, olive oil, egg, sugar, black pepper, rosemary, and remaining yeast mixture. Do NOT add the salt yet.
- Add the flour and mix on medium-low speed with the hook until the dough comes together, about 2 minutes. The dough should clean the sides of the bowl. If not, add additional flour by the tbsp until it does.
- Increase speed to medium and knead the dough for 5 minutes.
- Cover the bowl with a damp towel and let the dough rise for 20 minutes. Add the salt and mix the dough on low speed for 1 minute.
- Transfer the dough to a large bowl that has been lightly greased with oil. Cover it with a damp towel and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, 1-1 1/2 hours.
- Grease the bottoms and sides of a 9-inch baking or springform pan.
- Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough in half and pinch off 7 pieces of dough the size of a golf ball (2 oz each if you’re using a scale) from each half. Roll into rounds and place in the pan about 1/2-1 inch apart (they should fill the pan after the final riser).
- Cover with a damp towel and let them rise for 20 minutes + oven preheating time. The rolls should expand to fill up the entire pan, if you can see more than a couple of spots of the bottom of the pan, let them rise a bit longer.
- Preheat oven to 350. Brush the rolls with half of the melted butter and bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until golden brown. Remove them from the oven and brush with remaining butter. Serve immediately or at room temperature.