In a medium size bowl, mix together warm water and 1 teaspoon of sugar. Sprinkle yeast over top, and set aside. Let rise 10 minutes.
While yeast is rising, pour cold milk into a large glass bowl and scald in microwave (5 minutes on HIGH). Remove from microwave; scalded milk will have a thin film on top. Add salt, 1/4 c sugar and butter to scalded milk and stir until butter is completely melted.
Next, beat eggs in a small bowl. Add a spoonful of hot milk mixture to eggs and stir. Add more hot mixture to eggs, about a 1/4 c at a time, mixing well after each addition. When egg mixture is about the same temperature as milk mixture, pour eggs into remaining milk mixture. Cool to lukewarm, then add yeast mixture. Then stir in four or five cups of flour, one cup at a time. Beat well after each addition of flour, then knead in last cup or two of flour. Keep kneading until dough is somewhat elastic and smooth,12 - 15 times or more.
Generously grease the sides and bottom of an over-size bowl with shortening or butter. Place dough in bowl and roll dough around until it is a thoroughly greased ball of dough. Cover bowl with a dry tea towel and place in draft free area; let rise until double in bulk, about 2 hours.
After rising, punch down and knead dough several times. Cut dough in half. From one half, pull off a small section of dough (about 1/9 of the dough), and shape into a roll (the size of a mandarin orange, around 2-3 inches in diameter). Each half of the dough should yield 9 rolls.
Grease two 8" round cake pans. Place 9 rolls in each cake pan. Cover with a dry tea towel and let rolls rise 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 350 F. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and brush tops with butter while still hot, then remove rolls from pans and onto cooling racks.
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