Try This at Home: How to Make Dinner Rolls
Learn how to make Parker House rolls with Alex Guarnaschelli and Food Network Magazine.
Parker House rolls, iconic of the typical dinner roll, originated in the 1870s at Boston's Omni Parker House hotel. "They're delicious and truly American," Alex says.
Get the Recipe: Parker House Rolls
Measure out 1/2 cup warm water and check the temperature: It should be between 110 and 120 degrees (comfortable bathwater temperature). Sprinkle the yeast into a large bowl, add the warm water, and whisk in the sugar.
Let the yeast mixture sit 1 minute (it should bubble and froth slightly).
Gently stir in 1 cup flour to the yeast mixture. Set aside near the stove while you prepare the dough.
Mix the melted butter and milk in a mixer with the hook attachment on low speed. Add the eggs and mix until blended.
Scrape in the yeast mixture and mix until incorporated.
Add 6 1/2 cups flour and 1 tablespoon salt.
Mix until the dough forms a ball, 2 to 3 minutes, adding up to 1/2 cup more flour if the dough is too wet and sticky. The dough should gather around the hook and pull away from the sides of the bowl.
Brush a large bowl with softened butter. Transfer the dough to the bowl, cover with a towel and let rise in a warm place, 2 hours to 2 hours, 30 minutes. The dough should double in volume.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Dust a clean flat surface with flour and turn the dough out onto it.
Flour your hands; gently press the dough into a 16-by-8-inch rectangle, about 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick (don't use a rolling pin).
With the short side in front of you, cut the dough in half lengthwise with a floured knife.
Then slice crosswise into 12 even strips.
One at a time, fold each strip of dough unevenly in half so the top part slightly overlaps the bottom half.
Tuck the overhang underneath.
Place the rolls seam-side down on the prepared baking sheet in 3 tightly packed rows. Leave only an inch or two between the rows so the rolls rise up together in the oven. (If making in advance, wrap the baking sheet tightly in plastic wrap and freeze up to 3 weeks.)
Bake until the rolls are bursting at the seams and golden brown, 18 to 20 minutes. (If frozen, bake 25 minutes at 325 degrees F, then 10 minutes at 375 degrees F.) Remove from the oven and brush with softened butter. Sprinkle with salt and serve immediately.