Bolete’s House-Made Thyme and Sea Salt Rolls

Makes 2 dozen

If you like, sprinkle the tops of the rolls, as they do at Bolete, with a pinch of sea salt.

1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast
1/3 cup warm water
1/3 cup milk
1 cup heavy cream
1 large egg, beaten, plus an extra egg for egg wash
2 tablespoons butter, melted
4 cups bread flour
2 teaspoons salt
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons picked fresh thyme leaves

Dissolve yeast in warm water in a 2-cup liquid measuring cup until foamy, about 5 minutes. Add milk, cream, egg, and butter; set aside.

Meanwhile, pulse flour salt, sugar, and thyme in a food processor. Add wet ingredients and process, adding a tablespoon or so of flour if mixture is excessively wet and sticky or a tablespoon or so of water if dough feels hard and dry.  Continue to process until dough is smooth and elastic, about 30 seconds longer.

Turn dough onto a lightly floured work surface, knead into a smooth satiny ball, and place into a large bowl coated with vegetable oil spray Place in a warm place until dough doubles, 1 1/2 to 3 hours, depending on room temperature .

Without punching dough down turn onto a flour-coated work surface, dividing it into 2 dozen equal pieces. Working one at a time, roll each piece of dough into a smooth round. Place on a large (12- by 18-inch) cornmeal-coated rimmed baking sheet. Repeat with remaining balls of dough.

Cover shapes with a barely damp, lightweight kitchen towel and let rise until almost doubled in size, 45 minutes to 1 1/2 hours, depending on room temperature.

Fifteen minutes before baking rolls, adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Brush rolls with remaining beaten egg. Bake until rolls are golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Transfer rolls to a wire rack and serve warm.  (Can be wrapped in plastic wrap, placed in a zipper-lock bag and frozen up to 1 month. Warm in 300-degree oven for 5 to 10 minutes.)

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  1. says

    I am nervous to try bread from scratch, but I love to cook many other things and even make up recipes. This just may be the bread recipe that gets me over my fear of the words yeast and knead and rise. My family adores bread and I have a feeling they will adore me more if I make these successfully. Thanks for sharing! I also recently purchased the One Dish Dinners Cookbook and I’m excited to plan some meals using it!

  2. Pam says

    Oh, I am so glad that you visited Bolete! We are so fortunate to have such a wonderful establishment here in the Lehigh Valley. The Frugal Foodie hour (first and last hours of dining service at the restaurant – prix fixe menu plus half off any bottle of wine under $100) is one of our favorite indulgences. Thank you so much for posting the cream roll recipe. I adore them, and will love making them myself.

    BTW, Santa took the hint I gave him and gave me Perfect One-Dish Dinners for Christmass. He has been handsomely rewarded with at least 5 great meals. Making the shells/cheese and pulled chx sliders for Super Bowl. Thanks for a wonderful collection of warm, homey, tasty meals.

  3. Susan says

    I made these today, used a bread machine for the dough. I forgot to set the timer, and didn’t notice I’d left the oven on preheat until about 10 minutes in, but they were still great! A little crowded on the baking sheet, but a bigger one wouldn’t have fit in my oven anyway.

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