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Potato Dinner Rolls

Just out of the oven

Just out of the oven

Who wouldn’t want a soft, warm flavorful dinner roll with their Thanksgiving meal.I started making this recipe several years ago and it has become a staple on the Thanksgiving table. It’s a really simple recipe and is pretty much foolproof. Adding potatoes to a bread recipe is like magic, it results in a lovely soft texture. I make these the day of, the rise times are pretty long which works well for me since I am doing so many other things, first rise is 90 minutes and the second is about 2 hours.  The recipe makes approximately 16 large rolls and they freeze well so bake them, wrap well and freeze. This recipe is from King Arthur Flour under the title Amish Dinner Rolls.

Ingredients:

2 Large eggs lightly beaten and at room temperature

1/3 cups sugar

1 1/2 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons Butter at room temperature

1 cup unseasoned mashed potatoes

2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast

3/4 cups potato water (from the potato you boil ) cooled to room temperature

4 1/4 cups all purpose flour

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the dough hook combine all of the ingredients. Mix until the dough starts to leave the sides of the bowl, approximately 6 minutes. The dough should be smooth and shiny, its a very soft dough and you might be tempted to add more flour, don’t do it that is the way it is supposed to be. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, turn the dough so that its coated with the oil. Cover the bowl in plastic wrap, then cover with a kitchen towel and let it rise until its doubled in bulk in a warm place for 90 minutes.

Ready for first rise

Ready for first rise

After almost 2 hours doubled in bulk

After almost 2 hours doubled in bulk

Once the dough has risen, remove from the bowl and on a lightly floured surface divide the dough into 16 pieces (if you want larger rolls like a sandwich roll you can make larger balls), each piece should be about the size of a handball. Gently roll the dough in your cupped hands until it forms a nice round ball.

Place the dough balls onto a parchment lined baking sheet leaving about 2 inches between each (You will have to use 2 sheet pans) Cover with well oiled plastic wrap and place a kitchen towel over them and let them rise again for 2 hours, the dough has risen sufficiently when you gently press with your finger and the indent stays. Alternatively you can refrigerate the dough balls overnight and continue the rise in the morning.

Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.

After the rolls have risen for 2 hours place in your pre-heated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes. They will be golden brown and when you tap them with your finger there will be a hollow sound. Brush the tops of the rolls with melted butter,

Potato Dinner Rolls

Just out of the oven

This is my go to recipe for dinner rolls on Thanksgiving, the rolls are soft and flavorful and are very simple to make.  It was the only bread that I would make for the longest time partly because it’s so easy to make but really because they are so good.  The dough is silky smooth and handles beautifully, I make it in my Kitchenaid Stand Mixer, it does the kneading for me. The recipe makes approximately 16 rolls and they freeze well so bake them, wrap well and freeze. This recipe is from King Arthur Flour under the title Amish Dinner Rolls.

Ingredients:

2 Large eggs lightly beaten and at room temperature

1/3 cups sugar

1 1/2 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons Butter at room temperature

1 cup unseasoned mashed potatoes

2 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast

3/4 cups potato water (from the potato you boil ) cooled to room temperature

4 1/4 cups all purpose flour

In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the dough hook combine all of the ingredients. Mix until the dough starts to leave the sides of the bowl, approximately 6 minutes. The dough should be smooth and shiny, its a very soft dough and you might be tempted to add more flour, don’t do it that is the way it is supposed to be. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, turn the dough so that its coated with the oil. Cover the bowl in plastic wrap, then cover with a kitchen towel and let it rise until its doubled in bulk in a warm place for 90 minutes.

Ready for first rise
After almost 2 hours doubled in bulk

Once the dough has risen, remove from the bowl and on a lightly floured surface divide the dough into 16 pieces (if you want larger rolls like a sandwich roll you can make larger balls), each piece should be about the size of a handball. Gently roll the dough in your cupped hands until it forms a nice round ball.

Place the dough balls onto a parchment lined baking sheet leaving about 2 inches between each (You will have to use 2 sheet pans) Cover with well oiled plastic wrap and place a kitchen towel over them and let them rise again for 2 hours, the dough has risen sufficiently when you gently press with your finger and the indent stays. Alternatively you can refrigerate the dough balls overnight and continue the rise in the morning.

Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees.

After the rolls have risen for 2 hours place in your pre-heated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes. They will be golden brown and when you tap them with your finger there will be a hollow sound. Brush the tops of the rolls with melted butter,

What Will You Serve For Thanksgiving?

Dressing or stuffing

Dressing or stuffing

Some of you don’t celebrate Thanksgiving but here in the US this is probably the biggest food holiday of them all, it’s also a time to remember how much we have to be thankful for. For me the Thanksgiving meal is steeped in tradition. Every year I make the same meal, I have tried adding something different but in the end, the best is always the tried and true recipes.

Do you try new recipes or stick to the tried and true?

Is it Potluck or do you do all the cooking?

What do you make, or do you go to someone else’s house for the meal?

I bake pies for friends, this year I am making apple, pumpkin and pecan for both my table and for my friends. I have will have 6-8 people over, family and friends.

How many will be around your table?

Photo by James Ransom

Photo by James Ransom

Thanksgiving 2014

Butter and herb roast turkey– compound butter under the skin and steam roasted

Dressing– cornbread and bread with a lot of other things. My signature dish.

Mashed potatoes- Yukon gold, sour cream and butter. I like super creamy smooth potatoes so I use a food mill.

Corn

Brussels Sprouts- I am going to make this recipe this year from my friend Bevi, it’s a Food52 contest winner

Gravy

Cranberry orange sauce (see recipe below)

Homemade potato rolls

Just out of the oven

Just out of the oven

Pecan Pie

Pecan Pie

For Dessert

Pumpkin Pie

Pecan Pie

Pumpkin Pie

Pumpkin Pie

Apple pie right out of the oven

Apple pie right out of the oven

Cranberry Orange Sauce

Ingredients
1 cup sugar
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice + 1 tsp orange zest
1 12-ounce package Fresh or Frozen Cranberries ( I always buy Ocean Spray)
Combine sugar and juice in a medium saucepan. Bring to boil; add cranberries, return to boil. Reduce heat and boil gently for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cover and cool completely at room temperature. Refrigerate until serving time. Makes 2 1/4 cups. Optional- add the zest of 1 orange for a stronger orange flavor. I always make a double batch because I must have it for the leftovers.

The Wine

Can’t forget the wine, this year I have a magnum of Christian Bernard Select Black Gamay (A beaujolais), I also have Rioja, 2001 R. Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia,  Pernand-Vergelesses 2008, premier Cru Sous Fretille (Grand Vin du Bourgogne) I’ll pop the bubbly with dessert and serve coffee too. What are you drinking?

Hot Cross Buns

Last year I made hot cross buns, I liked them so much that they have become an Easter tradition. The recipe I made last year was really good,  but I’m always on the hunt for one that could be better. I use King Arthur Flour and love their recipes. My go to dinner rolls are from their site and they are the best, last years hot cross buns were also a King Arthur recipe.  In reading over this recipe I noticed that there is very little rising time involved, 45 minutes for the first rise and 20-30 minutes for the second rise, thats it. I chose to make them on a warm day to make the rise that much easier. The dough comes together quickly, it’s a very wet dough and now I know why they say to use a scoop and plop them in muffin tins, it does give the option of making them free form in a round pan (I chose that option). If you make them be warned the dough is hard to handle, it’s very sticky and soft. I first oiled my hands to try to form the balls and then changed to flour and let me tell you my hands were a sticky mess. I can deal with that but it makes forming the dough balls difficult. The recipe makes 18, I made them larger and it yielded 14. They also are not exactly round, sort of mishapen but they are very soft and fluffy.

Both recipe’s are similar in technique, I like the use of potato flour in these rolls, potato always yields a very soft moist roll, the flavor is good, however I liked the look of the other rolls I made more. Maybe I will play around with this recipe and see if I can’t get them to look better because they sure are delicious. So pillowy soft, a wonderful recipe and after tasting them I forgot about the sticky messy dough.

Ready to rise

Hot Cross Buns

Recipe from King Arthur Flour site

1 cup raisins, golden raisins or dried fruit (I used mixed dried fruit soaked in rum)

2 tbs rum or water

3 3/4 cup all purpose flour (Because the dough was so wet I added 3 tbs of flour to make it cohesive)

2 1/2 tsp baking powder

1 1/4 tsp salt

1/4 cup potato flour or potato flakes

1/3 cup sugar

2 1/2 tsp instant yeast

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp nutmeg (next time I will use 1/4 tsp nutmeg and 3/4 tsp cinnamon)

1/4 tsp allspice

2 large eggs

4 tbs melted butter

1 3/4 cup lukewarm water

Glaze (Optional but recommended)

1/3 cup sugar

4 tsp water

1 tbs vanilla extract

Icing for cross

1 1/4 cup confectioners sugar

2 tbs soft butter

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 tbs cream or milk

  1. Mix together the raisins and rum or water in a non-reactive bowl. For best absorption, use a microwave-safe bowl, cover the bowl, and heat for 1 minute, or until the mixture is simmering. Remove from the heat, and set aside to cool to lukewarm.
  2. Whisk together all of the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  3. Stir in the Princess Cake Flavor (if you’re using it), eggs, water, melted butter and the raisin mixture (including any remaining soaking liquid), then beat at high speed for 1 minute. The dough will be cohesive, but not smooth; that’s OK.
  4. Cover the bowl and let the dough rest/rise in a warm place for 45 minutes; it’ll get a bit puffy, but won’t really increase much in size.
  5. Preheat your oven to 400°F. Lightly grease 18 muffin cups. If you have just one 12-cup muffin pan, use aluminum foil cups for the remainder of the dough; or make free-form buns, and place them in an 8″ round cake pan.
  6. To make the glaze: Stir together the glaze ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl, then heat in the microwave until the sugar dissolves when you stir the mixture. Set aside to cool for a couple of minutes.
  7. Use a muffin scoop or 1/4-cup measure to fill the muffin cups; each should be about 3/4 full. If you have a scale, use about 77g (2 3/4 ounces) dough in each cup.
  8. Brush the lukewarm glaze atop the shaped buns.
  9. Let the buns rise, covered, for 20 to 30 minutes, until they’ve risen just over the top of the cups.
  10. Bake the buns for 20 minutes, until they’re a light golden brown. Remove them from the oven, and quickly turn them out of the pans onto a rack; if you wait too long, the glaze will cause them to stick.
  11. Allow the buns to cool for 10 minutes before icing.
  12. To make the icing: Combine all the icing ingredients in a small bowl and beat until thick.
  13. Use a pastry bag and tip to pipe thick crosses onto the buns. If you don’t have a pastry bag, fill a sturdy plastic bag with the icing, squeezing it down into one corner. Snip the tip of the bag off, and squeeze the frosting onto the buns.
  14. Store, well-wrapped, for 2 days at room temperature, or freeze for up to a month.

 

Thanksgiving

Photo by James Ransom

Photo by James Ransom

Every year I make the same meal for Thanksgiving, there is little to no variations year to year because everyone loves it that way. It makes things easier sort of, the only planning involves the shopping and of course the preparation. I try to make as much in advance as possible to save myself work on the big day. This will be Percy’s first Thanksgiving with me and I plan on giving him a plate of food along with the rest of my guests. I am excited that this year my two cousins will be joining me as well. My menu is very basic, nothing fancy but everything is homemade and has withstood the test of time. The dishes on the menu are linked to former posts so that you can see the recipes. Mashed potatoes, well, no recipe required, so my potatoes have not lumps I use the food mill and then simply add sour cream, butter and salt and pepper, thats all, the same goes for the pumpkin pie, I used canned pumpkin and follow the instructions on the back of the can, I’ve tried other methods and quite honestly the results are so similar it’s not worth the extra effort. The meal is always served with wine, this year a Cabernet Sauvignon, Lambrusco, Sparkling blanc de blanc and I am still undecided on whether to serve a Chardonnay or white bordeaux.

Thanksgiving Menu

butter and herb roast turkey

dressing

mashed potatoes

oven roasted brussells sprouts

corn

cranberry sauce

dinner rolls

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Dessert

Pecan Pie

Apple Pie

Pumpkin Pie

Thanksgiving Preparation

Photo by James Ransom

Photo by James Ransom for food52

I don’t know where the time went, next week is Thanksgiving. It dawned on me today so I started prepping. I make the same thing every single year, no change there would be a coup if I did. Part of me didn’t want Thanksgiving to get here even though it’s my favorite holiday, it’s my first without Izzy and Nando and I feel sad.  That said I have started prepping, write the shopping list, order the turkey, make what I can in advance, bread cubes are drying in oven as I type this. Took a whole chicken out of the freezer to make stock. There is a lot of work and planning that goes into one meal and I do what I can in advance. Is that what you do? I usually have 8-10 here for Thanksgiving. How many do you have over?

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What are your plans for Thanksgiving? Do you cook/host the meal or go to friends or relatives. Have you started preparing? Would love to know what everyone does, I know that some of you from other countries do not celebrate Thanksgiving. What is on the menu at your house? Traditional or non traditional or a mixture of both. Here is my menu with links to the recipes.

Butter and herb roasted turkey

Dressing

mashed potatoes- yukon gold, sour cream. butter salt and pepper

brussels sprouts- oven roasted

corn – steamed and served with some butter

homemade potato dinner rolls

cranberry sauce- use the recipe on the ocean spray package but sub fresh squeezed orange juice for the water and add some orange zest.

pumpkin and pecan pie – I usually just use the pumpkin pie recipe on the can of LIbby’s pumpkin, may do something different this year from my good friend Johnny at Kitschen Flavors.

I have a pretty strict time line making as much as I can in advance.

Done in advance:

Make chicken stock (need for dressing)

Make cornbread and air dry (2 days before I make the dressing)

Dry bread cubes for dressing (doing that today)

Cranberry sauce made ahead and refrigerated (making it this weekend)

Make compound butter for turkey (Monday)

Make pie dough and refrigerate (Tuesday)

Day before:

Prep the turkey putting the compound butter under the skin, and refrigerate.

Make dressing cover refrigerate.

Make the bread dough, form into rolls, cover and refrigerate until a few hours before baking them.

Make the pies plus an extra for a friend, the apple and pear tart

Thanksgiving Day:

We eat late around 5:30 or 6PM. I’ve heard that most eat early like lunch time. This is actually the easiest day, I have already done a lot of the work. Set the table, get the wine ready, refrigerate the white, let the red breathe/decant.

Turkey goes in at around noon – I get at 18-20 lb turkey and it’s done in 3 ish hours because of the fast cooking method I use in my graniteware pan.

Peel potatoes and cut and let sit in cold salted water until ready to boil. (Usually around 4PM)

Make the corn and brussels sprouts.

Bake the dressing

Bake the rolls right before dinner is served so they are hot.

Whew, it’s a lot of work but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Love Thanksgiving!!

Izzy And Nando

Izzy And Nando