I go through a lot of bread recipes. I’m still amazed when dough rises and the smell of bread baking is second to none. This recipe is one of my favorites. It is called button rolls because the way you snip the bread dough with scissors before baking makes a pattern similar to buttons on a mother’s pig, so they say. Lard is supposed to be used, but if you don’t have it handy, vegetable shortening will work in a snap. It may result in a slightly different flavor than the intended original, but delicious nonetheless.
Makes two dozen
Rolls brushed twice with beaten egg and snipped with scissors down the top to produce a sawtooth effect.
2 cups hot water
1 cup nonfat dry milk
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tsp salt
5 cups bread flour
2 packages dry yeast
2 tablespoons each lard and vegetable shortening
1 egg, beaten, mixed with a pinch of salt
In the bowl of an electric mixer, pour the hot water and add the milk, sugar, salt and 2 cups flour. Stir to blend. Add the yeast and stir. Measure in the shortening. Attach the flat beater. when the shortening has been blended into the heavy batter, add the balance of the flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until the dough is a shaggy mass and can be worked with the hands or under the dough hook.
Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and set aside to double, 2 hours.
Turn dough from the bowl and punch down. Divide the 24 pieces and roll each piece into a ball. Place the rolls end to end on the baking sheet, with 3″ of space between the rows.
Cover the rolls with wax paper and let rise fo 40 minutes. Then brush each roll with the egg-salt mixture. Leave uncovered for another 20 minutes. At the end of the hour brush again with the glaze.
Preheat the oven to 375F 20 minutes before baking.
When the rolls have been brushed a second time, face the long side of the rolls. Hold scissors at a 45 degree angle and snip 5 trianglular cuts, about 1 inch long, down the center of each roll.
Place the baking sheet in the center of the oven. Bake 12-15 minutes. Place on a metal rack to cool before serving.