The Perfect Dinner Rolls
Learning how to bake and use yeast can be a very frustrating process. But for those who have persevered and have managed to master the art, the rewards are simply amazing. You will be able to serve dinner rolls straight from your oven. Rolls that could even rival those that came from a fine bakery.
To make the best rolls, you have to follow a few simple guidelines. First, you have got to use fresh yeast. When yeast gets old, its ability to make dough rise is compromised. You may not get a rise at all. Instead of soft and fluffy, you will end up with flat and hard. In connection with this, you need to have a warm, draft-free place to let your dough rise undisturbed. The place needs to be warm so that the reaction would be potent. Let the dough sit here and allow the yeast to do its job.
Your attention to details will set your rolls apart. Use warm liquids when baking. If the temperature is too high, the microorganisms in the yeast will die. When it is too cold, the rate of reaction would be less.
Another pro technique is adding whatever sweetener the recipe calls for to the warm liquid before adding to the yeast. The sugar will give the little microorganisms in the yeast more "fuel" for a more potent reaction. Once you have combined the warm liquids with the sweetener and the yeast, let it stand for a bit until you see froth forming on top. This means the reaction is starting and it's time to add in the dry ingredients.
Flour is supposed to b added gradually. Even if the recipe provides an exact measurement of how much flour to use, don't chuck it all in at once. Add in a cup at a time and knead it in before adding some more. It's easier to add more later than take some out. Also, too much flour is not good as it makes the dough hard and tasteless. Keep adding flour until the whole mass does not stick anymore to the bowl. Knead this ball for five minutes. If it sticks to the surface you are working on, dust it with a little more flour. Keep working the dough until it becomes flexible and its consistency becomes even.
Letting it rise is crucial for puffy, delicious rolls. If you can, do a double rise. If pressed for time, a single rise can do. Put the kneaded dough on a large greased bowl - allow for added volume - and cover it. Place this on a warm spot in your kitchen. No, the inside of an oven set at the lowest temperature is too hot for this. If doing a single rise, press down on the dough and take it out of the bowl. When doing a double rise, don't take it out yet after pressing down and allow it to rise again. Then roll it on a floured surface to cut it into portions. Place cut portions into baking pans and allow to rise again. Bake according to the recipe. Serve the rolls warm with a little butter on top. See, there is nothing to baking the best rolls in town. A little practice and you'll soon have your guests lining up.