Pillowy Pull-Apart Dinner Rolls
These rolls turned out super soft and delicious!
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick/63 grams) unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus more for greasing the pan and melted for brushing
1 1/2 cups (360 milliliters) whole milk
1/4 cup (50 grams) sugar
4 1/2 cups (643 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast (one 7.5-gram/0.25-ounce packet)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 large eggs
Butter a 15-by-10-by-1-inch jellyroll pan, then line with parchment paper and butter the paper.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, heat the 4 tablespoons of butter, milk and sugar to about 130 degrees on an instant-read thermometer.
In a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, mix together 2 cups (284 grams) of the flour, the yeast and salt on low speed just until combined. Add the hot milk mixture and mix until combined and smooth, then mix on low speed for about 2 minutes, until a smooth, loose dough has formed (you'll have to scrape down the bowl a few times). Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and let the dough rest for 10 minutes.
With the mixer motor on low speed, add the eggs and mix until incorporated, scraping down the bowl as needed. Add the remaining 2 1/2 cups (359 grams) of flour and continue to mix for about 6 minutes. At first, the dough will look ragged, but it will become smooth after several minutes of mixing. The dough will be soft and will pull away from the sides of the bowl.
Using about 2 1/2 tablespoons (48 grams) of dough for each roll, shape each portion (lightly flour your palms between each shaping, if necessary) into a smooth 1 3/4-inch ball. To encourage the best rise, try to form a “gluten cloak” by pulling the top of the dough down and around each ball before pinching and sealing around the bottom.
Place the rolls on the prepared pan, spacing them about 3/4 inch apart in four rows of six. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise for 45 minutes. The rolls will look puffy and will almost be touching, but most of the rising will take place during baking.
About halfway into the rise, preheat the oven to 375 degrees with a rack in the middle.
Bake the rolls for about 20 minutes, until they are touching and fill the pan; they will turn golden brown. Brush with the melted butter. Using a spatula, slide them onto a wire rack or serve directly from the pan, warm or at room temperature.
- I made these up to the shaping step in the early morning, then covered them with a kitchen towel and slid them into the fridge. When I wanted to bake them, I let them sit covered at room temperature for about 30 minutes, then baked as directed. Turned out perfect!