Make Ahead

My Grandmother's Parker House Rolls

December 11, 2010
Author Notes

My Grandmother's box of recipes is a virtual treasure trove. I never have to look far for inspiration. I'm really hoping to post a photo, but with Christmas approaching, I've been a little kitchen slack lately and trying to catch up with everything. I do want to share her recipe though, because I remember these rolls as one of my all time favorites. Don't you just love Grandmothers? Bless her heart for her patience while trying her best to teach me about yeast during my "I've got better things to do" phase of life. It's at this time of year that I'm reminded of how much I miss her. Her kitchen wisdom was something else, entirely. The origins of her recipe, I'm not really sure, but here's what I do know, she was an adventurous cook and for the most part, self taught, so I'm heavily leaning towards her tinkering around with it until it worked. I often think on how her kitchen table was never once lacking for company or warmth. I like to think that I'm on the right path there. Update: I made them and they were as good as I remembered!! They had a crusty exterior and a melt in your mouth, buttery taste. Pictures are posted! - TiggyBee —TiggyBee

Test Kitchen Notes

Although I love everything about fresh rolls, warm from the oven, I have only made bread a few times. However, I was determined to make TiggyBee’s lovely rolls. Not only did they look incredibly delicious in her photos, but also I really loved the story behind them and could not pass up the opportunity to learn how. I am so happy I did. Due to my own inexperience, I did have a few hiccups. For example, I didn’t know how thin or thick the rolled dough should be before cutting the rounds. It seems to me however that bread making is an experiential art, the more you do it, the better you get. I will be doing this a lot more as we enter a new year, because this recipe makes rolls that have a buttery, crunchy-crust, and a fluffy-soft, melt-in-your mouth interior. Thanks to TiggyBee, I am looking forward to my next bread. —gingerroot

  • Makes a few dozen
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 1/2 cup Butter (1 stick)
  • 2 tablespoons Sugar
  • 2 Packages dry active yeast
  • 5 cups All-purpose flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 cup Lukewarm water
  • melted butter for brushing
In This Recipe
  1. In a saucepan, heat the milk until it's scalded but not boiling and remove from heat. Add the butter, sugar and salt. Set aside and allow the mixture to cool.
  2. Add the yeast to the lukewarm water and dissolve. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs until a froth forms.
  3. Take 3 of the 5 cups of flour in a large bowl and blend the cooled milk mixture into it. Add the beaten eggs and yeast and combine thoroughly. At this point, it should look like a thick batter.
  4. Take the remaining 2 cups of flour and blend it in a little at a time to form the dough. It should not be sticky, but should form a soft dough that comes clean from your hands.
  5. Place the dough on a floured surface and knead for 5 - 10 minutes. The dough should be smooth and stretchy. Put the dough in a greased bowl and turn it, allowing the top to become greased too. Cover the dough with a dish towel and allow it to double in volume. (About 1.5 hours.)
  6. Punch the dough down, allow it to rest for 15 minutes.
  7. Divide the dough into 2 equal parts and roll into a circle. Using a 2 1/2 inch cookie cutter or similar tool, cut circles from the dough to form the rolls. Lightly score each of the circles just off the center, but take care not to cut through. Brush the circles with melted butter and take the most narrow part of the circles and fold it over so that the edges meet and pinch them together. Brush with more melted butter for extra golden tops.
  8. On a lightly greased baking sheet, place the circles an inch apart, cover them lightly and allow them to rise again, for about an hour.
  9. After the circles have doubled in size, bake them at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes, or until golden brown.
Contest Entries

See Reviews

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Shanaralane
  • gingerroot
  • lapadia
  • Sagegreen
  • Terila