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Herb & Garlic Dinner Rolls

My contribution to Saturday night's dinner were homemade herb & garlic dinner rolls. I've tackled yeast doughs on a few occasions before, so the technique and all the waiting is nothing new to me, but these are the first fancy looking rolls I've made!

1 1/4 cups bread flour, + more to work into dough
1 package active dry yeast
1 cup milk
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoon combination of dried herbs: oregano, basil, thyme

- Stir together the yeast and 1 1/4 cups of flour.
- In a saucepan heat and stir together milk, sugar, butter, salt, garlic and herbs until the mixture is warm to the touch and the butter melts - about 120 to 130 degrees. (You don't want it to be too hot because the heat will kill the yeast.)
- Add the milk mixture to the flour and yeast. Stir it all together, scraping down the sides of the bowl as you go, until it all comes together and starts to form a sticky dough.
- Gradually add more flour in (I added about an extra cup or so total) until the dough becomes workable.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until the dough is smooth and elastic (about 6 to 8 minutes) It should feel smooth in your hands and no longer be sticky.
- Shape the dough into a ball and place it in a lightly oiled bowl, turning it to coat all sides. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1 hour.

- Punch the dough down and turn it out again onto a lightly flour surface.
- Divide the dough in half, then cover and let it rest another 10 minutes. Meanwhile, lightly grease a baking sheet with oil.

Ok, here's where it gets a little fancy. Feel free to bake these off as round rolls (just portion them out and let them rest on the baking sheet for half an hour before baking them), but if you'd like to make the knot rolls:

- Divide each portion of the dough into smaller pieces, however many you'd like - I got 16 rolls out of mine. Then roll each piece into a 12-inch long rope.
- Tie each rope into a loose knot, like a pretzel, leaving two long ends.
- Tuck the end on the top under the knot and the end on the bottom into the top center of the knot.

- Place rolls about two inches apart on your greased baking sheet. Cover and let rise in a warm place until they've just about doubled in size, it took about a half hour for me.
- If you'd like a brioche-like brown and shiny crust, brush the rolls with a little milk or melted butter. I originally intended to brush the tops of mine, but forgot to in the whole proofing process, and they came out looking just fine regardless!
- Bake at 375 degrees for about 15 minutes (the rolls should sound hollow when lightly tapped) Immediately remove them from the pan and cool on wire racks.

Indulge while they're warm! The flavors really come together once they've cooled down a bit though.

These were really delicious! I even froze a few of them to bake them off the next day and they were just as tasty as the first batch. Expect to see more bread recipes, for sure!