Keri's Yeast Rolls - 1st Place OK State Fair 2002


Keri C

TVWBB Wizard
I thought I had posted this before... evidently not. Might need these for Thanksgiving - may as well start practicing now!

Keri's Yeast Rolls - 1st Place OK State Fair 2002

1 tsp. sugar
1 package dry active yeast
1/4 cup lukewarm water
1 cup warm milk
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted (1/2 stick)
1/4 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten (at room temp)
1 tsp. salt
4 cups all-purpose flour

Combine sugar and yeast in water. Let stand 5-10 minutes until yeast begins to foam. Thoroughly mix milk, butter, sugar, egg and salt in large bowl.

Stir in the yeast mixture and 3 1/2 cups of flour, adding a bit more if necessary to make a soft, pliable dough.

Turn dough out on floured board and let rest while you clean and butter bowl. Knead dough gently 4-5 minutes, adding flour if necessary, until dough is smooth and silky. Return to bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in warm place until doubled in size.

[Alternate instructions - add ALL ingredients to bread machine in order recommended by your manufacturer, using 2 1/4 teaspoons ABM yeast if you buy it by the jar, and skipping the yeast-soaking step. Process using dough cycle, then continue below]

Butter a 12 cup muffin tin.

Punch down dough. Roll dough into a rough log shape, and cut into 24 roughly equal pieces. Roll each piece into a tight ball by continually folding it over onto itself, making sure that the outer skin is smooth and unbroken. Place 2 balls snugly against each other in each muffin cup - it should be a tight fit.

Cover dough loosely with plastic wrap for 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Bake rolls 20-25 minutes, or until light brown. Brush quickly with melted butter when they come out of the oven.

Note - for a nice glazed finish, mix an egg with a tablespoon of water, and brush rolls lightly with egg glaze just as they're starting to brown.

Makes 12 LARGE rolls
If these are anyting like your biscuits, I know they'll be perfect!

Any recommendation of how to get some of this done before hand? i.e. freeze etc.
You have a few options, Joe.

You can mix the dough and freeze it before its first rise. Form it into a thick disk and freeze it in a Ziploc or other heavy duty bag. Thaw in the fridge; as it thaws it will go through its first rise. Do not let it overrise.

Or, mix the dough and allow it to go through its first rise; punch it down then freeze it as above. Thaw 8 hours or overnight in the fridge. Let the dough stand at room temperature about 15 minutes to warm slightly before shaping. Let the shaped dough rise in the pan and then bake it.

Or, mix the dough and follow the recipe through the stage where you've placed all the rolled balls in the muffin pan. Immediately place the pan in the freezer for one hour. Remove the pan then remove the dough from the pan and freeze in a Ziploc. Return the rolls to the muffin pan to thaw at room temp; continue with the recipe.
Thank you, Kevin! I knew we paid you the big bucks for some reason...

Honestly, I've never made yeast dough ahead of time and frozen it like this, so I really appreciate the guidance. Duly noted and added to my own copy of the recipe.

Keri C
Thank you, Kevin! I knew we paid you the big bucks for some reason...
I wish!

Yeast doughs freeze very well but there is an exception: Don't freeze doughs that contain cheese or vegetables--things that contain moisture. When they thaw they get mushy and ruin the dough. Dried herbs and spices are fine.

Of the three choices above I choose the third for everything except pizza dough (for that I choose the second). I prefer to shape the dough then freeze it. It is worth doing a time or two to see if any adjustments need to be made (e.g., some pans release frozen dough better than others; sometimes, for heavier dough, a tiny bit of additional yeast is in order; intricately shaped doughs might need to be frozen in a way that allows for easy re-shaping before baking--that sort of thing).

There is a fourth option, actually. You can make your own 'brown 'n serve' rolls. This is a simple process but like the above might take you a time or two to get down. Brown and serve rolls and breads are, simply, products that are baked till done but not allowed to brown. Then they are chilled or frozen.

It is important to make sure that the bread/rolls are cooked through. I suggest baking at a lower temp--275--for longer, probably 30-40 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven when fully cooked but not browned, and do not brush them with butter. Allow to cool several minutes in the pan then remove the rolls to a cooling rack to cool completely. Freeze in a Ziploc (to guard against potential damage you can wrap each in a piece of waxed paper first).

There is no need to thaw brown and serve rolls before baking. Bake in a 350 oven for 15-20 min (longer for larger rolls), brushing with an egg wash at the browning stage, if desired, or with butter when pulling from the oven.

(For brown and serve bread, allow the loaf to sit on the counter for 20-25 minutes to thaw a bit, then bake at 350 till browned. The larger items need a bit of thaw time before they go into the oven.)
Thanks, we will give this a try. My German Grandmother made THE BEST rolls. My Mom wrote the recipe down, but never could get it right. Last year my wife tried it. She is great at baking but instead of rolls we got hockey pucks!
Kevin....Thanks a lot. I have always wanted to make brown and serve as there are usually only two of us. This will help a lot....tom
I tried this for Thanksgiving and I did something wrong. They came out very heavy. I don't bake and this was my first try at scratch anything. Is it too much flour or the yeast maybe?
Oh goodness - sorry they didn't work out right! Yes, old or sick yeast that doesn't have its full oopmh can cause them to come out heavy. Too much flour IS a possibility, as well. Was the dough soft and just a little sticky after it was kneaded? Or was it more firm, more like Playdough or modeling clay? If it was more firm right up front, then I would question the flour amount. If it wasn't Play-dough firm up front, but was nice and soft, then I'd question whether the yeast had all of its oomph.

Did you mix it by hand, or let it go through the prep phase in a bread machine?
I used the bread machine, and the dough was more firm. Thanks for the feedback. I'll try again, maybe mix by hand. That was my first try at baking anything from scratch so a little trial and error should be expected, I suppose.
My wife made your yeast rolls today. All I can say is-"Oh My God"! After she took the first bite she said,"I think I need to make these again later in the week.". She made them as little rolls, not in the muffin tin, but they were supurb. Thanks so much.