Photography: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Melanie J. Clarke
20 servings (serving size: 1 roll)

If you can't find whole wheat pastry flour, substitute all-purpose flour. Make and freeze the bread up to a month ahead. Bake, cool completely, wrap in heavy-duty foil, and freeze for up to a month. Thaw completely, and reheat in foil at 375° for 15 minutes or until warm.

How to Make It

Step 1

Combine first 3 ingredients in a large bowl, and let stand 5 minutes. Lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, pastry flour, 2 teaspoons poppy seeds, and salt; stir with a whisk. Add flour mixture to milk mixture; stir until a soft dough forms. Add butter, rind, and 1 egg. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes); add enough of the remaining flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to prevent dough from sticking to hands (dough will feel tacky).

Step 2

Place 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, 1 hour or until doubled in size. (Gently press two fingers into dough. If indentation remains, dough has risen enough.) Punch dough down; cover and let rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

Step 3

Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Lightly dust dough with flour; pat into an 8 x 10-inch rectangle. Divide dough by making 3 lengthwise cuts and 4 crosswise cuts to form 20 equal pieces; shape each piece into a ball. Arrange the balls in a 13 x 9-inch baking pan coated with cooking spray. Combine water and 1 egg, stirring with a whisk. Lightly brush rolls with egg mixture; sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon poppy seeds. Cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 20 minutes.

Step 4

Preheat oven to 400°.

Step 5

Uncover dough. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until golden. Remove from heat; cool in pan 5 minutes. Serve warm, or cool completely on a wire rack.

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