Booby Rolls

By • November 17, 2015 22 Comments

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Author Notes: We spent every one of my childhood Thanksgivings trekking to my aunt Sarah B.'s house in Cambridge from Stockbridge, Massachusetts. The dinner was an all day, thirty-person affair, with my aunt at the helm of the ship in her tiny Boston kitchen. Sarah B. idolized (and looked just like) Julia Child, so the entire event was a trip and a half. Her signature was simple, delicious yeast rolls that she would knot before popping them in the oven. See for yourself: The rolls have a similar resemblance to boobs (nipple and all) so my grandfather apply coined them "Sarah B.'s Booby Rolls." Obviously the name stuck.

My aunt passed, but we still make Booby Rolls every year to remember her by. This year, I think I'm going to take a stab at them myself.
Hannah Wilken

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Makes 32 boob-shaped rolls

  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 2/3 cup honey, divided
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons dry active yeast (about 1 packet)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  1. Heat milk to a simmer on the stovetop. Add 1/4 cup butter to the milk, stirring until the butter melts. Stir in 1/3 cup honey. Pour the milk into the bowl of an electric mixer to cool a bit. When the milk mixture is barely over room temperature, sprinkle the yeast over the top. Swirl the bowl a couple times, then let the yeast sit and foam for at least 10 minutes.
  2. Once the yeast looks foamy, add in the eggs and salt. Then place a bread hook on your mixer and turn the mixer on low. Slowly add the flour until the dough comes away from the sides into a ball but is still sticky. (Only add 4 1/4 cups of flour, unless extra is needed to make the dough pull away from the sides.) Once the dough pulls away from the bowl, stop the mixer; cover the bowl with a damp towel and let it rise for 1 to 2 hours, until it has doubled in size).
  3. Punch the dough down and cut into 32 equal pieces with a floured knife. Then gently roll into short ropes and tie into boob knots(!!!). Place the yeast rolls on a parchment paper lined baking sheet, about 2 inches apart, and cover with lightly dampened tea towels. Allow the rolls to rise a second time for 30 to 45 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 375° F. Melt the remaining 1/2 cup butter and whisk with 1/3 cup honey. Once the rolls have risen the second time, remove the towels and gently brush each roll with honey butter. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes until golden brown. Wait five minutes before serving.

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