Stir together yeast, 1 cup warm water, and sugar in a 2-cup glass measuring cup; let stand 5 minutes.
Beat yeast mixture and 2 cups flour at low speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer, using dough hook attachment, until combined. Add honey, butter, 2 eggs, salt, and 3/4 cup cornmeal; beat at medium-low speed until well blended, scraping bowl as needed. Gradually beat in 2 remaining cups flour. Continue beating until a dough forms and begins to pull away from sides of bowl. (Dough will be sticky.) Beat dough 1 minute.
Coat a large bowl with cooking spray; place dough in bowl, turning to grease top. Cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 2 hours or until doubled in bulk.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper; dust each with 1 Tbsp. cornmeal.
Punch dough down; turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead 1 minute. Shape dough into 18 balls; place on prepared baking sheets. Cover with a clean kitchen towel, and let rise 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until almost doubled in bulk.
Preheat oven to 375°. Gently brush rolls with lightly beaten egg, and sprinkle with sesame seeds and pepper. Bake 18 to 22 minutes or until golden on top, browned on bottom, and sound hollow when tapped on base. Let cool on baking sheets 5 minutes. Serve immediately.
Note: To make ahead, prepare recipe as directed through Step 5; cover loosely with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Chill 24 hours. Uncover and bake as directed in Step
I baked these rolls yesterday as a trial for Christmas dinner. My husband and son ate several immediately out of the oven - a big hit. We really enjoy bread - both yeast rolls and corn muffins - so naturally this recipe was intriguing. This recipe was my first homemade rolls to date. I will be preparing them with the make ahead instructions on Christmas Eve to bake and serve on Christmas day. I am planning to try the paprika brown sugar rub on our turkey as well.