February 27, 2013

Soft & Fluffy Whole-Wheat Rolls

I have a confession: I used to be terrified of yeasty things. Bread, rolls, buns, all that. If it involved yeast, rising, and kneading, I stayed far, far away. Biscuits and quickbreads were easy and reliable. And then I started this blog, and began challenging myself. First I discovered bread so easy, all you had to do was let it sit there! Then I moved up, with a little kneading here, a little rising there... I screwed it up plenty of times, really! I haven't shown you the bowls of un-usable goo, or rock-hard lumps of dough, the recipes I had to try over and over before showing you one that really worked. But you know what? I've learned a lot, and I can say with enthusiasm that breads are now one of my favorite things to bake! When I started the "weekly menu" idea, I wanted to try and have a new bread every week. I thought surely I would run out of ideas in no time. But thanks to the wonders of the Internet (and Pinterest!) I've got a long ways to go before I stop showing you new breads. I hope you're trying a few!

Soft & Fluffy Whole-Wheat Rolls (adapted from An Oregon Cottage)
Printable Recipe

1 Tb yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1/4 cup butter, softened (1/2 a stick)
1/8 cup honey
2 eggs, room temperature (if doubling, use 3 eggs)
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 tsp. salt

2 Tb melted butter

Combine yeast and water in a small bowl and set aside. 

Cream the butter and honey together in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Add the eggs and mix, scraping the sides. Add the buttermilk and yeast mixture.

Add flour and the salt, mixing until combined. Change to dough hook and knead for 2-3 minutes only, just until smooth and tacky, not gooey, adding a tablespoon or two of flour, if needed. (You can also do this all in a bowl or by hand, if you've got a strong arm! To knead the bread while it's sticky, just spray your hands and work surface with cooking spray, or coat them with butter, and go for it. It may be messy, but it will work! Just remember, DON'T flour it!)

Let sit in bowl, covered, to rise for one hour. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead a couple of times, then let rest 3 minutes. The dough should be smooth and elastic at this point.

Divide dough into 12 pieces, shaping each into a ball by stretching the top over and down the sides and tucking under a few times. Place balls of dough in a buttered 8 inch square baking dish. The rolls should be touching. Let rise, covered for 1 hour, or until rolls fill the pan.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and brush with melted butter. Let cool a few minutes before serving.
They really are the fluffiest whole-wheat rolls I've ever had! I can always use good whole-wheat recipes, because it's much healthier, and I'm awfully picky. And awfully fond of bread.
I made it all the way until it was time for the first rise before I realized... I'd used white flour!! They probably would have been perfectly yummy, but that would have defeated the point of this recipe, and I was on a time crunch... so into the bin that first batch went! 
I love the wheaty flavor of these rolls, and their soft fluffiness. The boys all agree! The Geologist liked his best with butter, while the little boys wanted them made into sandwiches for lunch. Ah, it feels so good to feed my family healthy things! Especially if they're scrumptious too. :)

1 comment :

  1. Stop baking bread, you're making me look bad! (lol Just kidding!) I love your tenacity when it comes to baking bread. You definitely have the touch. I think I am just very impatient and lazy when it comes to bread. I must do better. I must do better. I must do better. Do you think if I say it often enough anything will change? One can but hope. You inspire me. xxoo


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