Friday, November 2, 2012

Good Housekeeping Rolls

Over the years I have tried other recipes, but this is our family's absolute favorite holiday rolls. These tender crescent shaped rolls are a staple of our holiday meals and we all agree that there is no point in looking for another basic roll recipe. The smell of them baking draws the family into the kitchen.

1/2 cup butter flavor Crisco shortening
2 teaspoons salt
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 packages active dry yeast
7-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 large eggs, at room temperature

EARLY IN DAY OR DAY AHEAD: In large bowl, combine shortening, salt, sugar, and 1/2 cup butter (1 stick). Cut the shortening and butter into several pieces to help facilitate melting. Pour 1 cup boiling water over mixture and stir until blended.
In small bowl, sprinkle yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar over 1/2 cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees F.); stir to mix slightly. Let rest 5 minutes.
To mixture in large bowl, add flour, eggs, yeast mixture, and 1 cup cold water, stirring to mix well. Dough will be sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap; refrigerate 5 hours or overnight, stirring down dough, if necessary. The dough is easy to work with after refrigeration.
ABOUT 1-1/2 HOURS BEFORE SERVING: In small saucepan over low heat, melt 4 tablespoons butter (1/2 stick). Remove dough from refrigerator; divide into 3 pieces. On floured surface, with floured rolling pin, roll 1 dough piece into 12-inch round. Brush lightly with some melted butter. Using a pizza cutter, cut dough round into 12 wedges. Starting at curved edge, roll up each wedge toward point; curve ends in slightly toward each other. Place rolls, point-side down, about 1 inch apart, on greased large cookie sheet. I put 12 on each cookie sheet. Repeat with remaining dough pieces, using a large cookie sheet for rolls from each piece. (If you don't have 3 cookie sheets, work with 2 pieces of dough at a time and keep remaining dough refrigerated.) Cover; let dough rise in warm place (80 to 85 degrees F.) until doubled, about 1 hour. If your kitchen is cool, preheat oven on warm for a minute or so and then turn off and put in barely warm oven to speed rising.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and bake rolls 15 to 20 minutes, until rolls are lightly brown. These rolls freeze beautifully in freezer zip lock bags. This dough is also excellent for homemade cinnamon rolls.

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