Pillowy and perfect!
These rolls are amazing. They are just are, and no one can argue that fact.
I've never had fresh rolls at Thanksgiving because my family has always been a cornbread family. Cornbread stuffing, cornbread muffins, cornbread everything. But this year, I wanted to try something new, and I have been on a brioche kick, so brioche dinner rolls are making their way into the line up.
Brioche can be a tricky bread to make. There is so much butter involved, and it's soft, not melted when you add it to the dough.
It is all about trusting the process.
Trust that if you just keep kneading it, the dough will come together and it will be beautiful AND delicious. Brioche is buttery and sweet, soft and fluffy, literally like pillows of perfection. I don't think my family will be at all disappointed to have these brioche rolls on our Thanksgiving table this year - and maybe they'll even become a family staple.
🏷 Time: 3 hours (1 hour active)
🏷 Serves 12
3/4c Whole Milk
1.5tsp Active Dry Yeast or Instant Yeast
4c AP Flour
3 Large Eggs
1/2c Salted Butter, softened and divided
1 Egg for Egg Wash
Warm the milk to about 110°F in a large measuring cup
Add honey and sugar, and whisk until combined
Add yeast, and stir lightly a couple of times. Set aside and let the yeast bloom about 5 to 10 minutes. If using instant yeast, you can ski this step, but it doesn't hurt to do it regardless
Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the flour, and salt to the bowl and stir until combined
On low speed, add eggs one at a time
Slowly drizzle in the yeast, milk, and honey mixture
Using 1/2 a tablespoon at a time, and at medium speed (a 4 on a Kitchen Aid) add the butter to the dough, mixing completely between each addition of butter. This step will seem weird and like the butter is ruining the dough. Trust me that it is not. Just trust the process and keep adding the butter
On medium-high speed (a 6 on a Kitchen Aid), continue mixing the dough until the dough no longer sticks to the side of the bowl. It should develop a smooth and elastic texture that is not sticky to the touch. This step can take a while, so have patience. Anywhere from 5 to 10 more minutes. Mine was good around 6 minutes
Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl (or use the same bowl of your stand mixer to eliminate additional mess, and lightly grease it). Cover with plastic wrap or clean cloth, and let it rise for about 1 hour or until it doubles in size
After the dough has risen, punch it down and turn it out on your counter
Divide the dough into 12 equal portions and shape into a ball. The key here is to not flour the counter, because you want the dough to stick a little bit. Also, this dough has so much butter in it, it will not stick to the counter completely. I learned how to properly shape rolls from the America's Test Kitchen - Bread Illustrated book. I've add their instructions below - Working with one piece of dough at a time, form the dough into a rough ball, stretching it around your thumbs as though you are turning it inside out, and pinching the ends together so that the top is smooth - Place the ball seam side down and, using your cupped hand, drag the dough in small circles until it feels taut and round
Place the dough balls into a greased baking dish, 9x13 or round - whatever your heart desires, and let them proof for 1 more hour. They won't and shouldn't get to completely doubled in size, but we want them to expand so the balls are touching
Make an egg wash by combining 1 egg with 1 tsp of water and whisking
Brush the egg was over the rolls, this is what gives them their glossy tops
Sprinkle with Maldon salt
Bake for 25 minutes at 350°F
Let cool slightly before taking apart or removing from the baking dish. I promise, after 10 minutes they will still be warm, and your fingers won't be burned :)