In my husband’s family, we trade off hosting the holidays. Christmas is at his parents, Thanksgiving is at his sister’s, and Easter is at our house. I enjoy playing host because it means that I get my house cleaned to a level exceeding the every day “good enough” level. Even if it is only for the 5 minutes before everyone arrives. A clean and organized house with everything in it’s place simply puts me in a happy place. Better yet, since we host an early spring holiday, we typically spend a majority of our day outside. That means I get a cleaned up yard too! All the dog doo, sticks and left over leaves from winter get picked up. A happy happy place!
Although we rotate hosting, we typically delegate and share cooking duties. This year one thing that I volunteered for was dinner rolls…homemade of course without the corn-syrup, preservatives and other icky stuff…even though I have never made rolls in my life. But I saw those cute little bunny rolls on Pinterest where you snip little cuts in the roll to look like ears. Well at about 11PM the evening before our Easter gathering I pulled up the pin only to find that there were no instructions. It was just a picture. So I started digging into it. My investigation uncovered the fact that these were, in actuality, cookies pictured, not rolls at all. It’s kind of like that campfire story game, somewhere along the line of pinning someone turned them into rolls and the story was forever changed. Therefore, as I was running low on time, I faced the fact that my rolls were going to be just plain ol’ dinner rolls. No fancy bunnies…but that didn’t mean they couldn’t be delicious rather than cute. On to plan B…I found a recipe from Happy Hooligans and had good faith in the recipe’s taste worthiness since it was very similar to my usual sweet bread I bake in the bread maker all the time. But it was the how to that I needed help with. Until now, aside from pizza crust, I’ve only let my bread maker do all the baking for me. But that’s exactly where I started…with the bread maker.
Bread Maker Dough
1 cup warm water
2 Tbsp soft butter
1 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup organic cane sugar
3 cups flour
3 tsp yeast
Place ingredients in the bread maker in the manufacturer’s recommended order, for mine that means liquids on the bottom, solids on top with an indention formed at the top for the yeast to set in. Then choose the dough setting and let the machine do it’s work. In approximately 90 minutes you will have dough ready to divide and form.
Forming The Rolls
After the dough is complete, transfer it to a floured working surface. Begin dividing the dough into two halves, then divide those into halves, and continue splitting sections in half until you have 16 pieces of dough.
Then roll the 16 pieces into balls and place them in a greased baking dish (approx 9×13) with a slight space between them.
Cover them with plastic wrap, a towel, or place inside a large bag as I did below. Set them in a warm place (I set them on the stovetop since my oven happened to be warm). Allow them to rise until they are doubled in size.
Remove them from the wrapping and bake for about 15 minutes at 400 degrees. Once they are golden brown, remove and spread the tops with butter.