The Sauce: Cranberry Butter – Holiday fruity butter featuring fresh cranberry sauce with a hint of orange and cinnamon. Whipped in a flurry with fresh creamery butter for a lightly tart but sweet spread for rolls.
Dough, re, mi, fa, so, la, ti dough
My daughter Audrey is a stellar dinner roll baker. She’s been testing and tweaking her recipe for several years. It started a while back when I had a dream kitchen with miles of granite counter tops. Rather than make a double batch of dinner rolls for Thanksgiving we each made a batch with a recipe of our choice. Her rolls, her first batch ever, were finer textured and lighter than mine. Since then she’s been wrangling with the dough; tweaking, teasing, testing. Now her dinner rolls pouf up and bake into the most tasty, tender, golden morsels. She made some last month for Thanksgiving. I’m still dreaming about them.
Once in a while she has time to turn out a batch but not too often. It would be fun to have them more frequently so I asked her to teach me. With a notepad in hand, I studiously jotted the ingredients; flour, butter and eggs. She was fussy about the order. Beyond that, I recorded the way each ingredient changed the burgeoning mixture from lumpy to smooth and creamy, then thick and elastic. I recorded the consistency of the dough as it began to take shape. My hen-scratch notes included when she was beating, when she grabbed a wooden spoon to stir, when she dumped the lump on a floured board and kneaded with the heal of her hands. After a double raise and short bake, these dinner rolls are piping hot and heavenly. Serve with this slightly tart, fruity butter.
Recipe: Audrey’s Dinner Rolls
Prep Time: 20 Min | Inactive Time: 90 Min | Cook Time: 15 Min | Yield: 3 Doz Rolls, 1 3/4 cup Butter | Level: Moderate
- 2 cups warm water
- 1 1/2 Tbsp instant dry yeast
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup butter, softened plus more melted butter
- 2/3 cup nonfat dry milk
- 2 tsp salt
- 5-6 cups flour
- 3/4 cups whole Orange Cranberry Sauce
- 2 sticks butter, softened
- 4 tsp honey
Special Equipment – hand mixer
1 Lightly grease a large bowl and a baking sheet. Set aside.
6 Add 2 cups flour and stir. Gradually add enough flour to form a soft dough.
7 Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, 1-2 minutes.
8 Place in the greased bowl, cover and let rise until dough doubles in bulk, about 50-70 minutes. Punch down and divide into 3 clumps. Cover 2 of them.
9 Roll out one clump in a rectangle to 1/4” thick. Cut 2 1/2” x 5” rectangles. Roll up each piece and place on the greased baking sheet with the cut side down. Repeat with remaining 2 clumps of dough.
Instant dry yeast works faster than active dry yeast. Use 2 tablespoons of active dry yeast in place of the instant. Instant usually doesn’t require blooming but this recipe works well when the yeast has blooming time.
The rising time varies depending on the room temperature. Placed near a warm stove the rolls will raise faster. They should double in bulk. The times are approximate.
The Cranberry Butter is slightly tart compared to honey or Maple Butter. This butter is especially good during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. It keeps well in the fridge in an airtight container. Make enough cranberry sauce to serve with the turkey and to whip into Cranberry Butter.
Serve for Thanksgiving and Christmas. These rolls are super with Sunday Pot Roast or a hearty stew or soup.
Serve these dinner rolls with Maple Butter.
- Exchange 1 1/2 tablespoons of instant dry yeast for 2 tablespoons of active dry yeast.
- Exchange fresh orange cranberry sauce for canned whole berry cranberry sauce.
Inspiration – Audrey Bastian
Cook with Sauces
Written by Helen Horton
Photographs by Helen Horton
Updated: December 24, 2012