Wednesday, August 31, 2011

My Aunt Betsy's rolls (The best!)

2 packets yeast
1 Tbsp sugar
Warm water to dissolve yeast
1 cup milk
1/2 butter or margarine, melted (I use butter) - the original recipe calls for oil
1/2 cup sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp salt
approx. 5-6 cups flour

Step 1:
Put yeast and sugar in a large plastic cup (I doubt the cup needs to be plastic this is just how she does it), cover with warm water and stir with a fork. Set aside.

Step 2:
Put milk in a glass container and microwave for 2 minutes or you can scald it on the stovetop in a small pan. After scalding the milk, put the stick of butter in the container of milk. This melts the butter while also bringing the temperature of the milk down so it won't cook the eggs. Set aside.

Step 3:
In a mixer, combine the sugar, eggs and salt.

Step 4:
Add the yeast mixture and the milk/butter mixture to the mixer and mix everything together.

Step 5:
Add the flour 2 cups at a time. Mix well after each addition. Once all the flour is added, mix for at least 4 or 5 minutes. When I asked my mom how much flour she used, her only directions were "it's more than the recipe says" (Louise says 4-5 cups, sifted). She makes these so often that she just knows when the dough is the right consistency. I'm not that good so I started at 4 cups and then added flour 1/4 cup at time until I decided that 5 3/4 cup is right for New Jersey. We don't sift either.

The dough should pull away from the side of the mixer. If you have too little flour, the rolls won't hold their shape. If you have too much flour, they are too dry. My mom instructed that if I added too much flour, I could add another egg.

Step 6:
Leave in mixer, cover and let raise for about an hour.

Step 7:
Run the mixer (I do this on the lowest setting) for a few revolutions. This is supposed to make the dough finer.

Step 8:
Roll out the dough on a floured surface. The first time I made these, I spread butter on the top of the dough. I was planning to make part of the dough into cinnamon rolls and got ahead of myself. I like the extra butter so I still do it that way. My mom does not (unless she is making cinnamon rolls).

Step 9:
Form rolls into desired shape. My mom usually does knots so I do too. Using a sharp knife, slice the dough into strips (approx 3/4 inch wide) and then cut the strip into 3 or 4 smaller sections. Tie each piece in a knot and tuck the ends under the roll. Place formed rolls on a greased pan.

Step 10:
Let rolls raise another hour or so.

Step 11:
Bake at 350 degrees until light brown - maybe 10 minutes or so.

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