As far as dinner rolls go, Parker House rolls are the only ones I know of that have their very own special name. They were invented at the Parker House Hotel in Boston in 1855 (this was the same hotel that invented Boston Cream Pie, BTW. Man, what a chef!). Parker House rolls are characterized by their extra buttery dough, toasty exterior and signature “pocket” that makes it easy to apply more butter to the insides table-side and also easy to tuck leftover turkey or ham slices in them to make tiny sandwiches.
This recipe was adapted from the Fanny Farmer cookbook. If you want to use shortening instead of butter (I really don’t know why you’d want to do that) you may. The rolls can also be baked on two baking sheets and arranged so that they are not touching if you want more crispy exteriors. Don’t skimp on the melted butter glaze before and after baking, though. That’s kind of a deal breaker.
Dinner Rolls Video
Dinner Rolls Recipe – Printable!
- 1 envelope active dry yeast (1/4 ounce)
- ¼ cup warm water (around 110ºF)
- ¼ cup soft butter (plus more for topping)
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup whole milk, warmed to around 110ºF
- 1 egg
- 4 cups all purpose flour, plus more for kneading
- For topping:
- ¼ cup melted butter
- ½ teaspoon flaky salt
- Whisk yeast and warm water together in a large bowl and let stand 5 minutes.
- Add butter, sugar and salt and whisk.
- Whisk in warm milk until butter is melted.
- Add egg and mix well.
- Stir in 3½ to 4 cups of flour until a ball forms.
- Turn onto floured board and knead dough for 5 minutes until smooth.
- Place in greased bowl, cover and let rise 1½ hours (may also cover with plastic and refrigerate overnight).
- Set oven to 350º.
- Brush a 13x9" pan with melted butter and set aside.
- Divide dough into 4 pieces, roll each piece out into a rectangle 12x6". Cut into 9 rectangles. Brush with butter and fold each rectangle over, leaving ¼" exposed.
- Arrange in pan, sides touching and overlapping the ¼" edge.
- Brush with butter and sprinkle with salt.
- Cover and refrigerate 30 minutes or up to 6 hours.
- Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes until golden.