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recipe for North Carolina dinner rolls?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
My husband fondly remembers the pan rolls that were served at lunches & dinners when he lived in North Carolina in the 1960s and '70s. The rolls were very high and light, somewhat sweet (at least to us Northerners!), and had a wonderful yeasty smell. He tells me that he was served them everywhere -- high school cafeterias, hospitals, and even in many restaurants. When he went back to North Carolina on business in the 1990s, he was able to eat an almost-endless amount of them when dining out with associates, so they're still being made.

I've spent hours on the internet, written over 50 newspapers (attention: cooking/home editor), and have tried close to 100 recipes, but haven't achieved success. The recipes I've tried aren't sweet enough or never achieve the airy-ness I'm trying for.

Does anyone have a recipe for these elusive rolls?
post #2 of 9
wish i could help you. they sound good.

uh to get it sweeter u can use milk as a liquid and also increase the sugar and use butter as the fat
post #3 of 9
You might try something like this very traditional recipe for light, sweet rolls.

LIGHT, SWEET DINNER ROLLS
(Makes about three pounds)

Ingredients:
2 cups milk
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup shortening or lard; or 1/2 cup oil
1 tbs salt
1 tbs + 1 tsp instant yeast
2 large eggs
6 cups flour

Technique:
Heat the milk to scald, add the sugar, lard and salt. Stir until the shortening and sugar are completely dissolved.

Allow the milk to cool to “ baby bottle” temperature (around 96F), and add the yeast. Beat the eggs, and mix them into the milk.

Add 4 cups of the flour to the liquid and mix to form a wet dough. Continue adding flour until the dough just barely clears the bowl. Knead by hand or machine until smooth and elastic, and/or passes the window-pane test..

Set the dough in a clean, well greased bowl; and turn it a few times so it’s well also well greased. Allow to double in volume.

Punch down, remove from bowl, cut into manageable pieces and form rolls by ... rolling into balls. (I know. Shocking.) Place the balls on a pan about 2" apart form one another. This recipe ought to give you two sheet pans. Preheat your oven to 350F.

Cover the pans with cling wrap and allow the rolls to rise for until their volume increased by about 2/3 (allows some oven spring which makes for a lighter roll). Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until GBD (golden brown and delicious), then remove and cool on wire rack.

Hope this works for you,
BDL

PS. The above recipe is original with me, at least in the sense that any recipe of this type can be original. That is, it's not copied from one source but an adaptation of several filtered through long experience and typical technique. If you feel compelled to share it, post it elsewhere, or put it up on a stadium scoreboard, you have my blessing as long as you attribute it to me, Boar D. Laze. I'd consider it a kindness if you would also mention my eventually forthcoming book, COOK FOOD GOOD: American Cooking and Technique for Beginners and Intermediates.
post #4 of 9
this is very interesting. nice to have a taste of this. will try and see how it turns out.
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post #5 of 9
AWESOME... I will look out for your cookbook!!!!
post #6 of 9
how many people will this serve?
post #7 of 9
Strictly a guess, but I'd estimate, oh, 24 to the sheetpan, so 48 rolls (because the recipe says two sheetpans)?
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post #8 of 9
can i substitute butter for the fat?

can i use bread flour?
post #9 of 9
Hm, butter is, approximately, 20% water and 80% fat so you might have to adjust the amount of other liquids. If you use clarified butter, probably.If I'm not mistaken, for biscuits and rolls, you want to use the lowest gluten flour you can find, the name White Lily, or something similar, comes to mind.
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