French-Style Dinner Rolls
These flavorful, French-style dinner rolls make a nice accompaniment to soups and stews, or can be served before dinner along with some unsalted butter flavored with a spoonful of finely chopped fresh chives.
- 3-1/2 cups unbleached white bread flour
- 1/2 tablespoon salt
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 3/4 cup lukewarm water, divided (see recipe notes)
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 cup lukewarm milk (see recipe notes)
- Sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl and set aside.
- Place 1/4 cup of the water in a 1-cup glass measure. Add the yeast and stir until dissolved. Stir in the sugar and allow to stand for about 10 to 15 minutes or until the bubbly froth reaches the 1/2 cup mark.
- Make a well in the flour and pour in the proofed yeast mixture. Add the milk and another 1/4 cup of the water and begin mixing. Continue to add the final 1/4 cup of water in 1 tablespoon increments until your dough is fairly moist and soft.
- Knead for about 8 to 10 minutes, either by hand or using the dough hook on a stand mixer, until the dough is smooth and elastic. Place it in a lightly oiled bowl, cover it with a damp towel and allow to rise at room temperature for about 2 hours, or until doubled in bulk.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and punch down. Cover again and let it rest for about 5 minutes, then divide it into 12 pieces.
- Gently roll each piece into an oval shape. Place them on 2 lightly greased baking sheets about two inches apart. Cover them with a damp towel and allow them to rise for about 30 minutes. Using the thin side of a spatula handle, make a deep impression in the center of each roll. Cover again and let rest for another 15 minutes.
- While the rolls are resting, place an oven-proof dish with about 1-1/2-inches of water in it in the lower third of your oven and preheat to 450°F.
- Bake the rolls for 15 minutes, until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack for about 5 minutes and serve warm.
The liquids in this recipe should be lukewarm, meaning between 90° & 100°F.