Easy Dinner Rolls

68When I look at these dinner rolls I can't help but think of Jim Henson. Random, I know, but let me explain. When I'm by myself in the kitchen there's a lot going on: I'm cooking, tasting things, making huge messes, jotting notes in my kitchen notebook and often listening to music or an audio book. While I was prepping most of the Friendsgiving food you saw this week on the blog, I was also listening to a Jim Henson biography. I highly recommend making it a priority to check out a few biographies this next year, even if you're not a big reader. Hearing more about the lives of people you look up to or admire is truly inspiring. It's easy to get really focused on your own life and your struggles, short comings and also successes. But, I LOVE hearing how creative heroes of mine dealt with life's challenges. Reminds me that we all have hard things we go through. We all doubt ourselves at times. And that's ok. 

I know what you're thinking, "Isn't this post suppose to be about dinner rolls?" Good point. Thanks for rabbit trailing with me there for a second.132Dinner rolls are an absolute must at any big—well—dinner. And these are just that: standard but delicious dinner rolls. These don't have a bunch of weird flavors or a overly complicated method to make them. I did decide to shape them all a little different, just for fun. But you could totally bake them in a more traditional dinner roll shape as well. If you're looking for a basic, no-fail and yummy recipe, give this a try.

Easy Dinner Rolls, makes 20-25 (depending how you shape them)

1/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup + 1/4 teaspoon sugar
3 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 1/2 cup warm milk
1/2 cup melted butter
2 teaspoons salt
4 eggs
2 cups all purpose flour
4 cups bread flour

First, combine the warm water and sugar. Stir to dissolve. Pour the yeast into the water and just allow that it sit for 5 minutes. It should foam/bubble a little, that means your yeast is working.67In a mixer fitted with a dough hook (or you can do this by hand if you're working on your arm muscles) Stir together the yeast water, sugar, milk, melted butter and salt. Mix in the flour, two cups at a time. Making sure it all get's incorporated well. Mix in three eggs, one at a time, in between each addition of flour. Once you've added all the flour and the dough begins to form a ball knead for an additional 3-4 minutes with a mixer, or 5-6 minutes by hand. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and allow to rise until doubled in size (about an hour). Storing the bowl in a warm, draft-free spot is the best way to ensure it rises properly in a reasonable amount of time. I often stick mine in the oven (turned off).

Roll out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into 20-25 pieces and shape as desired. Place in a buttered baking dish and allow to rise for an additional 30 minutes. Whisk the remaining egg in a bowl with a teaspoon or two of water. Brush over the tops of the rolls. Add a few seeds or dried herbs if you like. Bake at 375°F for 18-22 minutes until the rolls begin to brown. Serve warm with plenty of softened butter. xo. Emma

Credits // Author: Emma Chapman, Photos by: Janae Hardy

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