These Parker House rolls are super indulgent thanks to plenty of butter mixed in and brushed on top. Milk and eggs enrich the dough, lending a perfectly tender texture. A sprinkle of flaky sea salt adds a welcome bit of contrast and crunch. These rolls are best served fresh and warm.
Heat the milk in a small saucepan over medium-high until it just starts to simmer, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in 1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter and the sugar until melted. Set aside to cool.
Put the warm water in a small liquid measuring cup and stir in the yeast. Let it sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
Combine the milk mixture, yeast mixture, eggs, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and half the flour in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook. Mix on medium speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Slowly add the remaining flour, mixing until a smooth ball forms. Increase the speed to medium-high and continue to knead the dough until very smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Coat a large bowl with nonstick cooking spray, then place the dough inside. Cover with plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place until doubled in size, 60 to 75 minutes.
Melt the remaining 1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Set aside.
Spray a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray, line with parchment paper then spray the paper.
Lightly dust a clean work surface with flour. Punch down the dough and turn it out onto the prepared surface. Pat into an even thickness.
Use a chef's knife or bench scraper to divide the dough into 24 pieces, then shape into balls to create small rolls. Place in the prepared baking dish in rows of 4 by 6, then brush the tops of the rolls with 4 tablespoons of the melted butter. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until almost doubled in size, 30 to 40 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven 350 degrees F.
Remove the plastic wrap and sprinkle the rolls lightly with flaky sea salt. Bake until puffed and golden brown, about 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and brush with the remaining 4 tablespoons melted butter. Serve warm.
When measuring flour, we spoon it into a dry measuring cup and level off excess. (Scooping directly from the bag compacts the flour, resulting in dry baked goods.)