Thursday, January 2, 2014

Buttery Cornmeal Crescent Rolls

I have a wonderful recipe for homemade buttermilk rolls that I got from my sister in law a few years ago. They are my go to. Unless my yeast is bad, they have never failed me and they never seem to disappoint. However, lately I've felt myself needing something different. I guess you could say I've become a little bored with my old recipe and so I thought I'd try my hand at something new. I saw this recipe and was intrigued by the use of cornmeal. I thought why not? It doesn't hurt to have a couple of favorite roll recipes right?! Besides if Mel says they are good, then they have to be good. These were really delicious. The corn gave these soft, tender, buttery rolls a slightly different texture and sweetness than my buttermilk roll recipe. They were easy enough to make and I really enjoyed them. I think I'll definitely make them again and I am happy to add them to my list of favorite rolls. Buttery Cornmeal Crescent Rolls Yield: Makes 2 dozen rolls Note: if you need/want to use active dry yeast instead of instant yeast(which is what I did), change the amount of yeast to 2 tablespoons active dry and dissolve the yeast in 1/2 cup warm water and 1 tablespoon sugar. Let the yeast mixture activate and foam (approximately 5 minutes) before adding it to the cornmeal mixture with the butter and 1/3 cup sugar. Also, as with all yeast doughs, I never use the flour amount called for in the recipe as a hard fast rule (unless a weight measure is given and then I pull out my kitchen scale). Because humidity, temperature, altitude and a multitude of other factors can impact how much flour you need in your yeast doughs, I always judge when to quit adding flour by the texture and look and feel of the dough rather than how much flour I’ve added compared to the recipe. This tutorial on yeast may help identify how a perfectly floured dough should be. Ingredients 2 cups milk 2/3 cup yellow corn meal - I actually used white cornmeal. I honestly didn't notice I had bought white until I got home from the store. 1 ½ tablespoons instant yeast ½ cup (1 stick) butter 1/3 cup granulated sugar 1 teaspoon salt 3 large eggs 5 ½ – 6 cups flour Directions 1.Heat the milk to just below a boil so bubbles are just appearing around the edges (this is called scalding milk). Add the cornmeal and cook and stir until thickened, lowering the temperature if needed so the mixture doesn’t boil (see picture below the recipe for an idea of what the consistency should be). Pour the cornmeal/milk mixture into the bowl of a stand mixer or a large bowl and let cool until lukewarm. Add the yeast, butter and sugar (if you dissolved active dry yeast with a bit of water and sugar until it foamed, add it now). Mix. Add the salt and eggs. Mix well. Add the flour gradually until a soft dough forms. Knead for 5-8 minutes. 2.Transfer the dough to a lightly greased bowl covered with lightly greased plastic wrap and let rise until doubled. 3.Divide the dough into three portions and roll each into about an 8-10 inch circle. Brush the top lightly with butter. Cut into 8 wedges and roll each wedge up starting from the wide end so it forms a crescent roll shape. Place each roll on a lightly greased or silpat- or parchment-lined baking sheet, spacing about 1-2 inches apart to allow for rising. Cover lightly with greased plastic wrap. Let the rolls rise until doubled. 4.Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes, until lightly browned. Brush with butter while still warm.

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