When I was little, maybe 6 or so, my mother worked in a bakery. She worked herself up to manager pretty quickly, and lucky for us, that meant we had to go with her to open in the morning. That place was wonderful so early in the morning. Filled with the smells of fresh bread, cookies and other pasteries (it had cookies bigger than my hand!) and it was just such a great place to be.
My favorite part of it was that we each got to pick one thing we could have every morning. Even at that age I liked my ruts, and more often than not I would choose these large, soft rolls. They had a hard crispy crust and were pillowy soft inside. There was nothing better than those things when they were hot.
These rolls are not quite the same, but so much closer than anything I have made so far. I think next time I am gonna make them a little bigger (this batch made 12, I’ll probably make it into 8 next time), and add a little more sugar, but DAMN are they good 🙂
Adapted from Harvest King Flour Recipe
3 1/4 cups flour
1 1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
1 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 1/2 cups water
2 teaspoons honey
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour and yeast. Whisk in the salt. Stir in the water and honey. Mix well by hand then dump out onto a work surface.
Knead the dough for approximately 10-15 minutes until soft and slightly sticky. You can add more flour or water as needed.
Put the dough in a lightly greased bowl. Grease the top of the dough then cover with a clean towel or saran wrap and allow to sit for an hour or so until doubled.
De-gas the dough, then cut it into twelve even portions. Cover all but one.
Take the ball you are working with, flaten it and fold the edges in. Flaten and do it again, sretching the dough a bit as you go. Repeat until the bottom is smooth and flat. Place on a clean surface with the creased-side up and cover. Do the same for the other pieces.
Cover the rolls and allow to rise for another hour until doubled. Preheat oven to 450F. Put cookie sheet in oven about 5 minutes before you’re ready to bake them.
Place the rolls upside down (smooth side up) on a sheet of parchment paper on a pizza peel or sheet of stiff cardboard, cut a slit into the tops and carefully slide onto the cookie sheet. Bake for approximately 10 minutes, rotate the cookie sheet then bake for another ten minutes or until a thermometer inserted inside reads approximately 200F.
Remove from oven and immediately brush with melted butter. Allow to cool before diving in. Enjoy 🙂
The outside is incredibly crispy, you won’t believe just how much softer the inside is.