Friday, April 6, 2012

Avid Baker's Challenge: Buttery Pull-Apart Dinner Rolls

This month's Avid Baker's Challenge recipe is Buttery Pull-Apart Dinner Rolls on page 208 of The Weekend Baker by Abby Dodge. Last month we made delicious, chocolatey Emergency Blender Cupcakes (which I've already made again!).

The theme of this cookbook is recipes that you can make over the course of a day or two...but - unless it's something like the chocolate croissants I made recently - I'm not usually patient enough to stretch my baking over several days. So I made these (very easy!) rolls early this morning and I was enjoying two of them with jam and coffee before noon.

These rolls were super easy to make and I was very pleased with the results - they were soft and tender and had a nice, slightly sweet flavor. The addition of three egg yolks gave them a deeper flavor and also prevented them from being dry. They kind of reminded me of a Portuguese sweet bread but not as sweet.

I used about 1/3 cup of lowfat milk and the rest half and half, and I also substituted dry active yeast for the instant yeast called for in the recipe. I didn't bother to proof the dry active yeast first or adjust the amount of yeast and the rolls turned out fine. They did, however, take longer to rise (due to change in yeast type) but other than that they came out wonderfully!

A few pictures:

mise en place - all the ingredients are staples

the dry ingredients are mixed together and then the warm cream and butter are drizzled in
and last the 3 egg yolks are added

The dough is kneaded in the mixer for 5 minutes and then set in a warm place to rise for about 45-55 minutes until doubled in size. I let mine rise for about 10 extra minutes because my kitchen was cool and I made the yeast substitute mentioned above. After the first rise, the dough is gently deflated and then measured into 16 equal-sized pieces (I actually only measured out 15 rolls, each weighing 60 grams). To form the rolls, you take one piece in the palm of your hand and, using your thumb to keep the dough tucked under, you roll it around on the countertop until it forms a smooth ball.

after the first rise the rolls are shaped and go in to the pan for a second rise

after the second rise

baked to a golden brown then brushed with melted butter and given a tiny sprinkle of sea salt

the rolls pull apart easily and reveal a soft white inside

the crumb was light and tender and the rolls were very soft - yummy!

Bye for now...


  1. They look so pretty, Alice. I like that you used a round pan. The baked buns look like one giant pretty flower!! I love it!!!. I'm glad you enjoyed these, and I'm sure, just like the choc cupcakes, these will be made again, and again :o) They freeze really well too, so it's easy to make the whole batch and freeze what you don't need.

  2. Your rolls looks lovely! So soft and tender! Yes, these are delicious, we finished everything the next day! A definite repeat in my kitchen!

  3. Very festive in a round pan (isn't if funny how a round pan instantly adds a "treat" signature to anything?) Lovely rolls!

  4. Thanks everyone! These were so fun and easy to make - definitely will make them again (and I do love them in the round pan - so cute!).