My mom ALWAYS made homemade rolls for dinner parties. Most of the time, she made a version of this recipe, which – as far as I’m concerned – was the creation of my aunt, Eleanor Spindel (possibly the best cook in the history of Christian County, IL), who also served them regularly. You REALLY have to try them. These rolls are so good they melt in your mouth. —ChefJune
grated rind of two oranges (or one, if very large)
Dissolve the yeast in 1/3 cup tepid water. Scald the milk. Add honey and butter to the milk.
2. When the milk mixture has cooled, add the beaten eggs and salt and the yeast mixture. Stir in the flour. You may need to add a little more (or LESS!) to get the proper consistency of the dough.
Mix and let rise until light in the bowl (about 15-30 minutes, depending on temperature of room). Turn out onto a floured board and knead until smooth and elastic. Place in an airtight container with room for the dough to rise, and refrigerate overnight.
Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Melt the butter with the honey. Divide dough in half and roll out into a 12-inch circle on a floured board. Brush with some of the butter-honey mixture and sprinkle with half of grated orange rind.
Cut in wedges. Roll from big end down and set on oiled cookie sheet.
Let the rolls rise until double in bulk. Brush with the honey-butter mixture and bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough.
Cool on racks or serve hot. Please do NOT reheat in a microwave!
Teacher’s Tip: This dough is a good one to use for cinnamon rolls. Roll dough out into a rectangle and spread melted butter over. Sprinkle a mixture of cinnamon and brown sugar over the dough, then raisins and nuts if you wish. Roll dough up jelly-roll style and slice into 1 1/2-inch slices. Place side-by-side in a 9-inch square pan with the cut sides up. Sprinkle more cinnamon and sugar on top if you want to end up with sticky buns. These may take a little longer to bake