If you are looking for a great dinner roll recipe…look no further! This dinner roll recipe is a variation of my Honey Wheat Bread recipe (that I will have to post at a later date). I normally make my bread with 100% whole wheat flour (I prefer hard white spring wheat to red wheat and grind it myself), but since the rolls are for other people than my family I was advised by my husband to use 1/2 all purpose flour 1/2 whole wheat flour. Apparently he thinks that everybody else doesn’t always appreciate 100% whole wheat. I can understand that point because I definitely have tasted (and have made in the past) some whole wheat breads/rolls that have been dense and dry. I have tried to tweak recipes and techniques that give a more desirable taste and appearance and, I feel, have totally succeeded!
I made two batches of rolls today. The first batch I used 4 cups of freshly ground whole wheat white flour + 2 cups of all purpose flour…so not quite 1/2 and 1/2. The second batch, to appease my husband, I used 1/2 and 1/2 (and probably ended up with a bit more all purpose in the end because my liquid measurement was a little more).
After the rolls were finished baking, and of course having a taste test (or two, or three taste testings :)) the winner in my book was the first batch which had more whole wheat than all purpose flour. Both were delicious though! You be the judge. If you are somebody who isn’t used to eating and baking with whole wheat, by all means use more all purpose flour. If you want to just try a little whole wheat maybe make the whole wheat ratio 1/4 to 3/4 all purpose flour . When you make your rolls let me know how they turn out! Enjoy and help make your Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner even yummier with these Homemade Dinner Rolls! -Shelley
Homemade Dinner Roll Recipe:
6 c total flour (I liked the 4 c whole wheat white flour + 2 c all purpose flour or use 1/2 whole wheat / 1/2 all purpose) This amount may vary a little bit depending on how accurate liquid measurement is/humidity in the air/time of year, etc.
1 T active dry yeast
3-4 T vital wheat gluten (this helps make the end product softer/chewier – especially nice when baking with whole wheat, optional though).
1/3 c oil
1 1/2 t salt
2 eggs, beaten @ room temperature (put in a liquid measuring cup)
+ add enough warm water to the measuring cup (that the eggs are in) to fill to the 2 1/2 cup mark
*If you don’t want to wait a long time to bring your eggs to room temperature here is a shortcut. Put the whole, un-cracked eggs, in a tall glass. Fill to the top with hot water and let sit for a couple of minutes. Pour the water out of the glass, crack in a large liquid measuring cup and – wa-lah – room temp eggs! Beat eggs with a fork or a whisk.
*Using your hand, measure water temperature. You want it a little warmer than lukewarm, but not hot otherwise it will kill the yeast. Take the measuring cup that the beaten eggs are in and add water to them to bring the liquid measurement up to 2 1/2 cups total.
*In a large bowl (if kneading by hand) or bread kneader (in something like a KitchenAid or Bosch mixer using the dough hook/attachment) add warm water/egg mixture, yeast, honey, oil and salt. Mix a little bit and let sit a few minutes to let the yeast start working.
*Add 1/2 of flour, mix a bit to incorporate the wet and dry ingredients.
*Sprinkle vital wheat gluten and mix a bit more.
*Add remaining flour 1 cup at a time, kneading/mixing in between until dough comes together and does not stick to your hands. Knead 8 minutes with an electric kneader or 10-15 minutes by hand.
*Shape dough into a large ball and place into a large oiled bowl.
*Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm spot until dough is doubled in size. I sometimes put another bowl with very warm water in the bottom and then set the bowl with the dough inside of it. It helps keep the rising dough warm which expedites the process a little bit. You can also turn your oven on to 200 degrees for a couple of minutes, turn it off and place covered bowl in the oven for a warm, draft free place to rise.
*Once dough has risen turn it out onto the counter, and cut into two pieces, if you desire. This actually isn’t necessary if you are making rolls. I think I just did it because I am used to doing that when I make 2 loaves of bread.
(If you wanted to at this point you could make this into 2 loaves or bread by kneading each piece lightly and shaping into loaves…make sure to have oiled hands…and placing in greased bread pans. Let rise until doubled or a little taller than top of bread pan. Bake at 375 degrees for 28-32 minutes.)
*Oil hands and grab a good handful of dough, squish and work it a little bit in your hands to get air bubbles out.
*Take the dough in one hand and make an “OK” symbol with your other hand. Push dough gently through the hole from the inside of your hand to the outside. This will make a smooth looking roll. Pinch off dough between your thumb and index finger that are making the “okay” sign when you get your desired size of dough. Remember the rolls will rise until at least doubled so don’t make them too big! You will get the hang of it. The part that was pinched off should be the bottom of the roll. Place them in a greased baking dish or cookie sheet. Make sure there is enough space in between rolls to allow them to rise sufficiently!
*Cover with kitchen towel, let rise in warm place until doubled in size.
*After rolls have risen, bake in a 375 degree oven for 12-14 minutes and golden brown. When they are done baking and still hot you can brush with melted butter to give a “shiny” appearance to the roll top.
If you want to have a Brown & Serve roll:
*Bake risen dough at 250 degrees for 20-25 minutes. (After taking the first batch out at 20 minutes I decided to bake the remaining batches a bit longer and turned out nicer at around 23-24 minutes).
*Let cool on pan for about 20 minutes. Finish them cooling off on a wire rack.
*Can keep in a sealed, plastic bag in the fridge for up to a week.
*When ready to use just bake rolls on a pan in a 400 degree oven for 8-10 minutes!