Joy came up with the recipe for these after much trial and error. Once she mastered this, the hardest part was resisting the urge to make and eat them every day. These dinner rolls are lighter than a cloud, slightly sweet and we serve them with every holiday dinner.
3 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1 cup lukewarm cultured buttermilk
1/4 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar, separated
1 1/2 tbsp melted butter, cooled slightly (plus additional for brushing)
3-4 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1. Dissolve yeast in warm water with teaspoon of sugar and wait until it proofs.
2. Add buttermilk and 1 to 2 cups of the flour with the yeast mixture into the mixing bowl of a heavy stand mixer ( we use a Kitchen Aid). Mix until it forms a very soft batter then let it stand for 10 minutes or until it looks bubbly.
3. Add melted butter, egg and salt, mixing well.
4. In one bowl add 2 cups of flour and the remaining sugar. In a separate bowl add remaining flour. Add the bowl of flour and sugar to the mixture in the mixer. Continue to add flour from the second bowl until the mixture forms a soft dough (this usually brings the flour amount up to 3 1/2 or 4 cups). Dough should still stick slightly to the sides of the mixing bowl.
5. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and allow it to rest for about 10 minutes. If you plan on using the mixer to kneed the dough, you can just leave it in the mixing bowl for this step.
6. Kneed dough using a dough hook in the Kitchen Aid for approximately 5 to 10 minutes until the dough is satiny smooth.
7. Grease a large glass bowl and turn out dough into the bowl, flipping it to make sure it is coated with the grease. (You can use cooking spray or oil, we do not suggest you use butter.) Cover dough with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place until it doubles in size (about 1 to 1 1/2 hours).
8. Punch down dough lightly and turn out into a lightly floured surface. Using a floured rolling pin, flatten dough into a rectangle until it is about 1/2 inch thick. Fold dough in half and pinch edges together so it forms a 1 inch thick layer then cut into equal sized sections until you have 18.
9. Place rolls on a greased baking sheet (or sprayed) so that they are 1 1/2 inches apart. Cover with a damp towel and allow them to rise until they have doubled in size (approximately 1 to 1 1/2 hours).
10. Preheat oven to 350 and bake rolls for 12 - 16 minutes or until lightly golden brown on top.
11. As soon as they are removed from the oven, lightly brush tops with melted butter. Serve with Cinnamon butter (see notes below for recipe).
1 stick butter (room temperature)
1/4 cup powdered sugar
2 tbsp honey
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Cream butter in an electric mixer for 30 seconds to a minute. Add sugar, hone and cinnamon, beat until smooth and thoroughly blended, scraping down sides of the bowl until mixture is light and fluffy. Chill until ready to serve with rolls.