How to Make Yeast Rolls

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • About

    2 dozen


Appears in

Craig Claiborne’s Kitchen Primer

Craig Claiborne’s Kitchen Primer

By Craig Claiborne

Published 1969

  • About


  • 1 package dry yeast
  • ¼ cup lukewarm water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 tablespoons (¼ cup) shortening
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 to 2½ cups flour
  • 1 egg


  1. Combine the yeast and water and let stand for 5 minutes. Stir to blend.

  2. Combine the salt, sugar, and shortening in a mixing bowl. Bring the milk almost to a boil and add to the bowl, stirring. Mash the shortening against the sides of the bowl until shortening is broken into small lumps.

  3. Stir in 1 cup of the flour and beat vigorously with a wooden spoon until the mixture is thoroughly smooth and elastic. Add the yeast and water mixture and the egg and stir until well blended. Stir in ¾ to 1 cup more flour. With floured fingers, add enough more flour to make a soft dough that does not stick to the fingers. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured board and knead for about 12 minutes, giving in all about a hundred kneading strokes.

  4. Rub a large bowl with butter or shortening. Shape the dough into a ball and place it in the bowl. Rub the surface of the dough lightly with butter or shortening and cover the bowl with a light kitchen towel. Let the dough stand in a warm, draft-free place until double in bulk, 1 to 1½ hours. As noted earlier, the simplest method to keep the dough warm is to place the bowl over a larger bowl filled with hot but not boiling water. The water below must be changed at intervals so that it stays hot.

  5. Punch the dough down by plunging a fist into the center and pulling the dough away from the sides of the bowl. Turn the dough once more onto a lightly floured board. Roll the dough out and cut it into rounds with a floured biscuit cutter. Make a deep crease across the top of each roll with the floured handle of a knife. Fold the rolls over and gently press the edges together. Arrange the rolls symmetrically 1 inch apart on a greased pan. Cover with a light kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place for about 35 minutes.

  6. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

  7. Bake the rolls for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden-brown.