A long time ago, our friend Stephen Schmidt gave us the recipe for these barbeque rolls. Yes, they are softer than Charmin. No, they do not have to be used with barbeque. Oh, with pulled pork and sauce? You’d think you were in the The Carolinas or maybe Texas Hill Country. But really, these wonderful rolls are the only ones you’ll ever need. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack. Hungry at 2AM watching Seinfeld reruns? Heat one of these up, add some butter plus honey or jam, and even that Seinfeld show is finally going to make sense.
You will have different rolls in your eating career. You will never, ever have anything better.
Soft Barbeque Rolls
Yield: 24 rolls serving 8 to 10 people
- 1 Cup lukewarm water
- 2 Packets active dry yeast
- 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
- 1 Cup milk
- 2 Large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/3 Cup sugar
- 1 Tablespoon salt
- 6 Cups all-purpose flour, just a bit more for kneading
Pour water into a large mixing bowl and sprinkle yeast over the top. Set aside 5 minutes to allow yeast to dissolve.
In the meantime, melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Remove from heat and stir in milk. Mixture should be lukewarm; if necessary return to heat briefly. Pour into yeast.
Add eggs, sugar, and salt and beat well. Add 4 cups of the flour and stir briskly until mixture is smooth and begins to come away from the sides of the bowl. Work in the remaining 2 cups of flour. Let stand 3 minutes, then turn out onto an unfloured work surface. Using a rubber spatula or metal pasty scraper, slap dough back and forth until it begins to gather into a ball. Flour hands and knead dough lightly for 1 minute, reflouring hands as necessary. Dough will remain extremely soft and sticky.
Scrape any dried doth out of the mixing bowl. Place dough in bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 to 1 ½ hours
Brush a 9 X 13-inch baking pan with 2 tablespoons soft or melted butter. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and roll into a wide log. Divide the log into four pieces, then cut each into 6 strips. Roll the strips between your hands into 24 balls, tossing each onto a lightly floured work surface as it is formed. Lightly dredge balls in flour. Arrange rolls in six rows of four each in the pan. Drape loosely with a sheet of plastic wrap and let rise until almost doubled, about 45 minutes. Bake at 375 degrees for 25 to 35 minutes, or until lightly browned. Turn out of pan, then reinvert onto a plate or, if you are not serving at once, a rack.