Buttery Cloverleaf Rolls

The first time I decided to use my beloved stand mixer to make bread, I was daunted by how a small package of yeast (gross, right?), flour, and other kitchen staples can turn into this:

Buttery Cloverleaf Rolls

I brought these to supper club after C said my offer to bring “just rolls” was a cop out. I got so many compliments at supper club that night. I imagine it had something to do with how rarely we eat freshly baked bread. It could’ve had a little something to do with how much butter went into these. It was my first attempt and I usually don’t alter a recipe the first time I make it, especially when baking (i.e. straight up chemistry!) is involved.

How Sweet It Is: Buttery Cloverleaf Rolls
makes about 30 rolls
4 1/2 teaspoons (2 packets) active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1 1/2 cups warm milk
1/4 cup honey
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large egg
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 teaspoons salt
5 1/2-6 cups all-purpose flour, or more if needed
melted butter for brushing
In the bowl of your electric mixer (with an attached dough hook), combine warm water, yeast, olive oil and 1 tablespoon honey and mix with a spoon. Let sit until foamy, about 10-15 minutes. Add warm milk, remaining honey, egg and butter, and mix on low speed until just combined, then add in 2 cups of flour and salt. Mix on low speed, gradually increasing to medium as flour becomes incorporated. Slowly add the remaining flour 1 cup at a time, stopping at 5 cups. Knead the dough on medium speed for 4-5 minutes, then check to see if the dough is sticky. If it is too sticky, add a bit more flour and knead until it becomes smooth, but you want some stick to it. Remove dough from the bowl and form into a ball with your hands, covering with a bit more flour until it is no longer sticking to your hands.
Brush a large bowl with melted butter. Add dough to the bowl, turning once or twice to cover in butter. Place a towel over top and let rise in a warm place for 1 1/2-2 hours. Punch dough down, then transfer to a floured workspace. Tear small pieces of dough off the larger piece, and roll into balls slightly larger than one inch wide. You will end up with about 90 dough balls. Brush a muffin tin with melted butter, then add 3 dough balls to each tin. Cover and let rise again, in a warm spot, for about an hour.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Brush the tops of each clover with a hefty glug of melted butter. Bake for 11-12 minutes, or until tops are just golden brown. Remove from over and brush tops with melted butter again, repeating the brushing another few times as the rolls cool. Remove from the tins and serve.
The muffins are best when eaten on the same day they were baked, however if you’d like to make them the day before, make sure to let them cool completely and store in an air-tight container.
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