Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Cooking Class: Butter Crescent Rolls

My mom started making these rolls years ago in place of these Two-hour rolls we grew up on (that I still love). I loved them so much, I also adopted the recipe and now it is my go-to roll recipe whenever we have a family gathering or a pot luck dinner to attend. They are so light and airy and practically melt in your mouth.

*I had previously posted these years back but I make them a little differently now and I thought I'd also show some step-by-step instructions to demonstrate just how easy they are to make.

1 cup milk
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
8 cups bread flour
2/3 cup sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. instant yeast (If you don't have instant yeast, you'll have to dissolve the yeast in the cup or warm water)
1 cup warm water
2 large eggs, beaten

Heat milk until bubbles from around sides. Remove from heat and add butter. Stir until mixture cools and butter is melted. In a mixing bowl, fitted with a dough hook, add the flour, sugar, salt and yeast. Pulse to combine. Add water and eggs and gently pulse, then add the milk mixture. Knead for about 30 seconds. Dough should be sticky. If it's too dry, add more water.

Knead for about 4 minutes. Put dough into a large greased bowl and let sit, covered, until doubles. Punch down and divide in fourths. (I am terrible at evenly dividing dough so I use my kitchen scale to make sure all my dough balls weigh about the same.)

Let dough rest for 10 minutes. Take one dough ball and roll it into about an 8-9-in circle.

Cut into eighths (like a pizza); a pizza cutter is the easiest way I have found.

Starting at the wide end, roll the dough up to the tip.

Place either in a greased cake pan or cookie sheet (metal pans work better; you will need several), making sure to put the tip side down so it doesn't unroll while it raises.

Repeat with the remaining dough balls. Cover with a light kitchen or pastry towel and let raise again until doubled in size.

When the rolls are just about done raising, preheat the oven to 400°F.

Bake rolls for 12-15 minutes.

*NOTES:There are so many fun things you can do with these rolls! I have divided the dough into 8 balls, rolled it into smaller circles and made crescents half the size. These are great for bridal/baby showers or for parties. You could also make them bigger, make 3 balls instead of 4, and make larger rolls for chicken or egg salad sandwiches.

Another fun thing is to put fillings into them. I have made ham and cheese roll ups, put pizza sauce and cheese inside, of course cinnamon and brown sugar, sugar and orange zest with a little orange glaze...the possibilities are endless. Have fun with it and enjoy!

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