Tuesday, May 8, 2012

dinner rolls

A few weeks ago I got a call from someone requesting, among other things, dinner rolls.Or something that could be used to make ham biscuits, specifically. Now, my husband has been bugging me to make rolls for about 3 years now. But for some reason, the idea of making rolls was daunting. It kind of scared me, in fact. I thought no way! I can make bread and cupcakes and countless other items, but the skill level to produce a roll, I do not possess.

That was until that call a few weeks ago. I have a really hard time telling people I can't do something. It goes against every fiber of my being, in fact. I doubt myself on a daily basis, but to actually admit that I can't do something makes my chest hurt a little. So, I told her I was sure it could be done. I mean, other people are doing it, so surely I could, too. I told her I would need to experiment, but that it most definitely could be done.

So I had one day to work out this roll. ONE day to get it right! I didn't have any other days in which I would have the time to experiment, so there was a lot of pressure riding on this one day. Lesson learned: sometimes we all need a little kick in the pants to do what we think we can't.

Yesterday, I had just short of 8 dozen of these little rolls, and today if I had to guess how many were left I'd say, maybe 10. Success? I measure it by whether my kids will eat it. They did.

So I'm sharing the recipe with you today. Hope you and whomever you make it for enjoy it as much as we did! Please keep in mind I am sharing this with you as I would make them... writing recipes for others is not exactly my specialty. :)

Gluten Free Dinner Rolls

2 1/4 teaspoons (1 packet) yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup warm water
1 1/2 cups sorghum flour
1 1/2 cups tapioca starch
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons xanthan gum
1 teaspoon salt

So, I do not proof my yeast. EVER. I haven't proofed yeast in at least a year. But if this step is important to you, then start by proofing your yeast. Heat the milk to between 100-110 degrees F, then mix with the yeast and sugar and let sit for about 5 minutes.

While the yeast is proofing, in a large mixing bowl combine the sorghum, tapioca, xanthan, salt and eggs. Mix in the yeast mixture and let this mix for about 4 or 5 minutes. I am a big fan of my stand mixer-- if you are using a stand mixer use the paddle attachment.

Here's the tricky part with gluten free bread; getting the right water level. Start with 2 tablespoons of warm water (whatever the hottest that comes out of your tap is fine) and watch the dough from there. When the water level is right, it should look something like this:
It sort of resembles a really thick cake batter. The dough shouldn't be sliding off of the paddle, but it might fall off in a glop or two. (sounds delicious! lol) If you feel like it needs more water, add 1 teaspoon at a time. When you get a consistency that looks similar to this, it's time to make the rolls!

The easiest way to do it is to use some sort of scoop: I used my little spring action cookie scoop, it's about a tablespoon in volume. First, line 2 or 3 baking sheets with parchment paper. Then scoop the dough into whatever size roll you want to make. At this point, you can wet your hands and even shape the dough if you want, ie more square, round, whatever. My batch made between 36-38 rolls.

After you have all the dough on the pan, cover them and let them rise. If I'm not using my oven, I will set it to slightly above warm and let them rise in the oven. If you don't want to do that, just make sure they are somewhere warm.

Let them rise for about 20 to 30 minutes, until they are close to double. Brush with a little melted butter, and bake at 375 for about 15 minutes, a little longer if you are making bigger rolls. Make sure to rotate your trays half way through the cooking process or you might end up with some that are burned on the bottom.  After you take them from the oven, brush with more butter, if desired. Seriously, is there ever too much butter?

But if all goes well, you should have something that resembles these.
And as every foodie knows, someone reading this will make substitutions. I would love to hear what you did differently and how it worked! So please feel free to leave comments.


aseafish said...

Love this. Sorry to be a pain in the butt, but do you have any suggestions for dairy free sorts?

gfbaker said...

water :) i rarely use milk anymore. go figure.