Homemaking dinner rolls from scratch is not difficult, but if you just follow a recipe you will never get the HOW TO. That’s what we are here for. You won’t find a recipe here. You can use any recipe. We are going to tell it like it is and get you started making bread!
Here is an overview of the HOW TO of making dinner rolls that you will need to know that a recipe probably doesn’t cover because they assume you know:
- How to activate the yeast
- How to knead the dough
- How to know when you have kneaded enough
- How to proof the dough
- How to shape the dough
Here at Home Cook FAQ, we want you to know the HOW TO of cooking and baking. If you want to make dinner rolls from scratch, here are the things you need to know in order to follow any recipe you find.
How to activate the Yeast
Your yeast will activate (start bubbling or growing) when it sits in warm water for 5 minutes. Get your mixing bowl and run some warm water in it to warm it up. We do that so that the bowl doesn’t cool the water off when we pour it in. Dump that water out. Run water from the faucet until it is warm to your hands. Not hot, but it would make your hands warm if they were cold. Now, use this warm water to measure out the amount of water you need in your recipe. Pour it into the bowl.
Add your yeast and mix it a bit with the water. Wait at least 5 minutes. What will happen is the surface will change. The color of the water is tan. When the yeast starts to work you may see a large blob of yeast come to the middle of the surface, or you might just start to see what looks like tiny balls start to rise to the surface. It is a fascinating thing to watch!
How to knead the dough
After you activated the yeast, you added your other ingredients and mixed it all up in your mixer with the dough hook. Once all the flour is incorporated, you can actually just keep the mixer going for about 10 minutes to get the dough kneaded well. You don’t ever have to knead it with your hands. That is why we all love our Kitchenaid Stand Mixers and why you should get one right away! For bread, we recommend the 5-quart size. It is pricey, but you will never regret it. It is an essential appliance.
How to know when you have kneaded enough
Dough should hold its shape and be smooth and slightly tacky when it is kneaded enough. Take a handful of dough out of the bowl and make it into a nice ball. Then sit it on your palm and see if it holds its shape without slumping or spreading. If so, you are ready for the next step.
How to proof the dough
Proofing is the easiest part. The dough just sits for 30 minutes to an hour and grows to twice its size. But the dough should be in a slightly warm place for the best results. The most ideal place is the inside of your oven. To proof in the oven, turn the oven on to 170 degrees when you begin making the dough. Then turn it off when the yeast is activated. When the dough is ready to proof, cover the bowl with a damp kitchen towel and put the bowl in the now slightly warm oven. When it has risen to twice its original size, it is ready for shaping.
How to shape the dough
Shaping dough into rolls can be done many ways, but we prefer a nice round roll. For that, we have found the best method is by using your own hand to protrude the dough into a ball like in the video below. This also makes it easier to get the rolls to be close to the same size as you will get the hang of it after doing a few and you will just start to do the same thing over and over. Watch this:
Don’t forget to proof the rolls again!
After shaping the rolls and arranging them in the pan, you will need to proof them one more time before baking. Proof them in your oven while it is off until they are double their size. Take them out and then preheat the oven to the baking temperature. When the oven is preheated, bake your rolls!