Becky Luigart-Stayner
Yield
16 servings (serving size: 1 roll)

One dough recipe yields five roll variations. To freeze rolls, bake, cool completely, wrap in heavy-duty foil, and freeze. Thaw and reheat (still wrapped) at 350° for 12 minutes or until warm. Heat the milk in the microwave or on the stovetop; if it's too hot, let it cool to no warmer than 110° so your dough will rise nicely.

How to Make It

Step 1

Dissolve sugar and yeast in warm milk in a large bowl; let stand 5 minutes.

Step 2

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Add 3 cups flour and egg to milk mixture, stirring until smooth; cover and let stand 15 minutes.

Step 3

Add 3/4 cup flour and salt; stir until a soft dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 8 minutes); add enough of the remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent the dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel tacky).

Step 4

Place the dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat top. Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, for 40 minutes or until doubled in size. (Press two fingers into the dough. If an indentation remains, the dough has risen enough.) Punch dough down; cover and let rest for 5 minutes.

Step 5

Divide dough into 16 equal portions. Working with one portion at a time (cover remaining dough to prevent drying), shape each portion into desired form (see "Shaping Options"). Place shaped dough portions on each of 2 baking sheets lightly sprinkled with 1/2 teaspoon cornmeal. Lightly coat shaped dough portions with cooking spray; cover with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 20 minutes or until doubled in size.

Step 6

Preheat oven to 400°.

Step 7

Gently brush dough portions with butter; sprinkle with poppy seeds, if desired. Place 1 baking sheet on bottom oven rack and 1 baking sheet on middle oven rack. Bake at 400° for 10 minutes; rotate baking sheets. Bake an additional 10 minutes or until lightly browned on top and hollow-sounding when tapped on bottom. Place on wire racks. Serve warm, or cool completely on wire racks.

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