Looking for the perfect rolls to serve for Thanksgiving? Or more importantly, to use the next day to make turkey/cranberry sauce sandwiches?
Look no further: these rolls are amazing. They are soft and tender, but also hold up to slicing and using as a sandwich bun.
Leftovers are always the best part of a big holiday dinner. I love cooking once and then repurposing dinner for the next few days. And rolls are the perfect food to make ahead of time, freeze, and then reheat in the oven just before serving.
To help elongate the crescent rolls and keep them from being too thick in the center, I cut a slit in the wide edge, separate the slit slightly, and then roll the dough into a crescent shape.
This gives longer ends that are easier to curve into a rounded crescent.
I posted about these rolls previously, but I have adapted the recipe this time to use instant yeast, which doesn’t require proofing before adding to the dough. You can find the original recipe, using regular yeast HERE.
Crescent Dinner Rolls
2 ⅔ cups whole milk
½ cup sugar
6 Tbs butter
1 Tbs kosher salt
1 heaping Tbs instant yeast
8-8 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
3 beaten eggs
Melted butter (about 4 Tbs; for brushing on top of cooked rolls)
Combine milk, sugar, butter, and salt in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium heat until butter melts and sugar completely dissolves. Remove from heat and pour into the bowl of a stand mixer. Allow to cool to lukewarm.
Add 4 cups of flour and the instant yeast to the warm (but not hot) milk mixture. Use a dough hook to mix on low speed for 30 seconds, then scrape the sides of the bowl. Mix on high speed for 3 minutes. Mix in eggs.
Knead in as much remaining flour as needed to make a soft dough. The dough should be very soft–it will be coming away from the sides of the bowl, but it will still stick to your finger when you touch it. Remove the dough hook and cover the bowl with a clean towel. Place the bowl in a warm place and allow dough to rise for 45-60 minutes, or until doubled.
Grease large baking sheets, or line with parchment paper or silicon mats.
Punch down dough. Lightly oil your work surface (USE OIL, NOT FLOUR, TO KEEP THE DOUGH FROM STICKING TO YOUR SURFACE). Divide dough into 3 balls and place one of the thirds onto the lightly oiled surface. Keep remaining dough covered until ready to use.
Roll each dough ball into a circle and cut into 12 wedges. Cut a ½” slit in the wide end of the wedge, separate slightly and roll into crescent shape and place on prepared pans.
Cover rolls with a clean cloth and allow to rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes. When dough has about 15-20 minutes to go, preheat oven to 375°F.
Bake for 15-18 minutes or until golden-brown. When done, remove from oven and brush lightly with melted butter.
Yield: 36 rolls
**To prebake (and freeze) for serving another day: Bake rolls on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until rolls just barely begin to brown. Remove from oven. (Do not brush with butter) Cool completely. Place in Ziploc freezer bags. Freeze.
On serving day: Place frozen rolls on a baking sheet, bake at 350°F for about 7-10 minutes, or until hot and golden brown. Brush tops with melted butter.