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Grandma’s Buttery Yeast Rolls

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I suppose most families have a favorite recipe that makes the holidays. It just wouldn’t be Thanksgiving (or Christmas, or Easter) without it. A special dish that brings happy memories and a sense of belonging that accompanies a long-held food tradition… For us, that recipe is my grandmother-in-law’s yeast rolls.

These rolls are so delicious, I’m certain you’ll want to make them for your own family. Be sure to save a few for the next day’s leftovers, too. There’s nothing quite like a slice of ham or turkey (or both!) tucked into one of these yummy rolls for lunch the day after.

You can make Grandma’s folded version, or shape the dough into balls for the traditional roll shape, leaving space between each roll to allow room for the dough to rise.

To make delicious rustic doughnuts, roll out the dough and cut into rounds according to the recipe, but also cut a small circle out of the middle of the round. Allow to rise. Fry in hot oil, flipping once, until golden on both sides. Roll the hot doughnut in cinnamon-sugar, or in your favorite glaze. Add some frosting and sprinkles on top if you want to get really fancy!

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For brown-and-serve rolls, follow the recipe instructions until it’s time to bake the rolls. Heat the oven to 250* and bake for about 20 minutes, or until the rolls just begin to change color. Don’t let them brown! Cool in pans or remove to a rack. Place the cooled rolls in freezer bags. Refrigerate for up to a week or freeze for up to a month. When you want to finish them, heat the oven to 350* and bake for about 10 minutes, or until golden brown.

Grandma’s Buttery Yeast Rolls

Yield: Approx. 36 rolls depending on size

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups milk (scalded)
  • 1 /2 cup butter
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 packets active dry yeast (dissolved in 1/2 cup lukewarm water)
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 7 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Instructions

  1. After scalding the milk, add 1/2 cup (one stick) of butter to the milk and let sit until the milk is lukewarm.
  2. Beat eggs well. Add sugar and salt, and beat again.
  3. Add cooled milk and yeast.
  4. Add flour gradually, using the dough hook on an electric mixer if you like. If the dough becomes too stiff for the mixer to handle, turn the dough out onto a lightly-floured countertop and knead the rest of the flour in by hand.
  5. Knead the dough until smooth.
  6. Grease a large bowl, add the dough, and cover it with a clean towel. Allow the dough to rise in a warm place until double.
  7. Turn the dough out onto a lightly-floured countertop and knead it again.
  8. Roll out the dough to about 1/2" - 3/4" thick and cut it into rounds, roughly 3" in diameter. Place a small pat of butter in the center of each round, and fold the dough in half over the butter. Place in a lightly-greased pan, allowing about an inch between the rolls to give them room to rise, and allow the dough to double again.
  9. Bake at 300* until slightly golden brown, about 25 - 30 minutes.
  10. Brush tops with melted butter if desired.
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