Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Dinner Rolls

These are THE best dinner rolls.  Ever.  And guess what?  I'm going to share them with you.  I made this recipe today with it rainy and 50 degrees outside and they still turned out AMAZING!  I think they are actually classified as refrigerator rolls.

Are you ready to give them a try?  Well, here we go.

First gather your ingredients.

You will need:
1 package dry yeast
1/2 cup very warm water
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg beaten
2 cups warm water
1-1/2 teaspoon salt
About 8 cups all purpose flour - NOT self rising

Now we're ready to start mixing it all together.

First, you want to dissolve the yeast in the very warm water.  I don't have a clue what temperature to even tell you to use....I am a "by feel" person.  I normally put some on my wrist and if it feels slightly hot, but not burning hot I use it.  I also just dissolve it directly into my measuring cup.  Normally at this stage, I throw a pinch of sugar in with the mixture to help the yeast activate.  Set it to the side.  I totally forgot to take a picture of this step, so please forgive me.

Next, cream the shortening and sugar in a very large mixing bowl.

Now, you will add your beaten egg, water, salt and yeast mixture.

Mix that all up real well and then add about 5-6 cups of your flour.  At this point, if your using a stand mixer, you want to change to the dough hook.

Mix well.  Then continue to add the flour until you get a dough that is easy to handle but not too stiff.  At this point you may want to turn it out onto a counter and knead it to get a feel of how easy to handle it is.  You don't want it sticky, but you don't want it too stiff to knead.  Here is mine all kneaded and ready to go.  I normally can get all 8 cups of flour in and it turns out perfect.

Next, grease a bowl or spray with nonstick spray (that's what I do).  Put your dough down inside and swirl and turn it over to make sure it gets well coated.  I normally just give the bowl I mixed everything in a good quick washing and re-use it.

Now you want to cover it.  I cover mine with saran wrap.  Like so...

Now you can place it in the refrigerator until you are ready to use it.  I normally make the dough the day before I want to make my rolls and let it sit in the fridge overnight.  You can skip refrigerating the dough and go straight to shaping rolls if you want to, though.

How my dough looks after being refrigerated overnight:

Punch the dough down and then turn out onto a lightly floured surface.  Pull off small chunks at a time knead and shape them into small balls of dough.  Place on greased baking sheets.  I use glass cake pans.  I make them about the size of or just slightly bigger than golf balls.

Cover and let rise for about 3 hours.  I normally will warm my oven at 350 for 1 minute and then turn it back off and put my rolls in there to rise.  It creates a draft-free warm environment for them to rise in.

Sorry, forgot to take a picture of the risen dough this morning.  This is a picture of the rolls I made back at Thanksgiving, so there isn't a full 3 pans.  I have gotten a full 36 rolls from this recipe ever since.  I think I rolled the ones above a little too big, so I didn't get as many out of the recipe.

Now you want to put them in a 400 degree oven for 12-15 minutes or until nice and golden on the top.

I then proceed to brush some butter on the top of them to make the tops extra soft.

And last, but not least, savor them!



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