So anyway, coming back to today’s recipe. I’ve tried making these dinner rolls like umpteen number of times but never got around to posting the recipe cuz I was never too happy with the pictures. Either the lighting was bad or the collective hunger pangs of folks in my house never permitted a proper photoshoot to happen. My son totally loves making the shapes and the 4-strand braid (top right in collage #2 above) was made by him. He loves watching videos on bread baking and much to my surprise he made a 4-strand braid faster than I made the 3-strand one! His nimble hands look promising and I think he will do very well as a pastry chef when he grows up. For now, I welcome any help that he can offer me as making rolls can be slightly time consuming if you like to make different shapes. If not, just roll ’em up into little buns. They taste great anyways.
Shaped Dinner Rolls
Prep time: 15-20mins | Proofing + shaping time time: 2 hours | Baking time: 15 mins | Yield: 16 rolls
- 450 grams (3-1/2 cups) all purpose flour (maida)
- 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons instant yeast
- 1 teaspoon caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 cup (250 ml) lukewarm milk
For the glaze:
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 tablespoons of water
For the topping:
- white or black sesame seeds (til)
- white or black poppy seeds (khus khus)
- nigella sativa/black cumin seeds (kalonji)
1. Sift the flour and salt together into a large bowl. Add the instant yeast and sugar and mix everything well. Make a well in the centre
2. Add the butter and rub it into the flour till the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
3. Lightly beat the egg into a small bowl and add the lukewarm (not hot) milk to it and mix. Add this mixture into the well in the centre of the flour.
4. Gently bring the mixture together to form a dough. The mixture will be very sticky so dust a clean working surface lightly with flour and turn out the dough mixture on to it and knead for 8-10 minutes till you get a smooth pliable dough * see notes
5. Place the dough in a well oiled bowl and turn it around gently it is coated with oil on all sides. Cover with a lightly oiled cling film/plastic wrap and keep in a warm place till the dough doubles in volume, about 1-1/2 hours (or lesses if you live in really warm weather)
6. When the dough has doubled turn it out on a clean working surface and gently punch out the air using all your fingers. Then lightly knead it once.
7. Using a weighing scale (preferably) measure the entire dough and then divide it into 12-16 equal pieces (my dough rose to weigh 800grams in total and I made 16 portions of 50 grams each)
8. Grease a large baking sheet lightly with butter or oil and keep it ready.
9. Roll each portion of dough into a smooth round ball before shaping it further. You can make knots, braids, wreaths and many other shapes. I made two rolls of the same shape making it a total of 8 shapes.
10. To make braids, divide a ball into three equal parts and roll it into ropes before braiding them. Pinch both ends tightly and tuck them under the braid.
11. To make trefoils, divide each piece of dough into three and roll into balls. Place the three balls together in a triangular form.
12. To make batons, shape each piece of dough into an oblong and slash the surface diagonally using a sharp knife.
13. To make knots, shape each piece of dough into a long rope and tie it into a single knot, pulling out the ends through
14. Place the prepared rolls on the greased baking sheet and cover with a lightly oiled cling film/plastic wrap and keep aside until doubled in volume, about 20-30 mins
15. Preheat oven to 220 degrees C for 15 mins. Mix the egg yolk and water to make the eggwash solution and when the rolls have doubled, gently brush them with the eggwash. Sprinkle with the seeds.
16. Bake in the preheated oven for 14-15 minutes or till golden. Remove from the oven and then using a metal spatula transfer them onto a wire rack to cool completely. Serve with the side dish of your choice.
The dough will be very very sticky at first but resist the urge to add too much flour. When you knead it for 8-10 minutes you will get a nice and soft dough as and how the gluten develops. Do keep some flour handy before you begin though just to help you knead the dough.