One day in Home Ec class when I was younger, we learned to make Parker House rolls. As they came out of the oven, we grabbed the hot rolls off the baking sheets even though the teacher protested that we’d burn ourselves.
Of course they were too hot to eat, but that didn’t stop us. Tender, buttery rolls with a hint of sweetness shaped like puffy half-moons—who can wait? They looked like Pac-Man, and they were delicious!
Video! How to Make Parker House Rolls
What Are Parker House Rolls?
The Parker House in Boston (now called Omni Parker House) was a grand old hotel built in the mid-19th century. Many politicians and famous people stayed there, and legend has it that John F. Kennedy proposed to Jacqueline Bouvier in the dining room.
Parker House rolls, which the hotel became famous for and which I later learned to make in Home Ec, are made from a yeast dough made rich with milk, butter, and a little sugar.
How to Make Parker House Rolls
The dough is rolled out, stamped into rounds, spread with even more melted butter, and folded in half.
They puff in the oven and look quite charming. Every once in a while, a roll or two will fan open completely while baking, but don’t fret. They’ll still taste just as good.
I let the dough rise for an hour, but have found that you can bake the shaped rolls right away without a second rise. I think that helps them keep their shape, plus they’re just as feathery without the second rise.
Why Are Parker House Rolls Shaped This Way?
The classic shape—the one that Fannie Farmer writes about in the dog-eared copy of “The Boston Cooking School Cook Book” that sits on my shelf (a second-hand edition from 1934)—is a half-moon made by folding a flat round of dough in half, as shown here.
Today, bakers make the rolls all kinds of ways, like forming balls and packing them into a baking dish so the edges touch and become soft. Or, cutting squares and baking them the same way. These methods are quicker than folding, which is probably why they became popular. You also see Parker House rolls sprinkled with salt before baking; salt and butter together are certainly irresistible.
None of these are traditional, but does that matter? If you want to make a different shape, the dough comes together easily and you’ll enjoy working with it.
Storing and Freezing Parker House Rolls
Serve them warm. They’ll make you smile when you bite into one. Leftovers will keep for a few days in an airtight container at room temperature.
You can freeze these rolls after you’ve made them. Let them completely cool, and then tightly wrap them in a double layer of plastic (aluminum foil and plastic) and freezing. They should be fine in the freezer for up to 3 months.
To reheat, remove the plastic, wrap loosely with foil, and warm in a low oven until hot. You can brush the warm buns with a little melted butter as well, if you like!
You might be tempted to freeze the dough, thaw it and then bake them. I wouldn’t recommend it. Freezing unbaked and thawing these rolls is tricky because the half-moon shapes might open up in the oven and wreck all your hard work.
Bring on the Carbs, Please!
- Make-Ahead Dinner Rolls
- Potato Dinner Rolls
- Sausage Rolls
- Garlic Bread
- Cheesy Bread
Updated November 3, 2019 : We spiffed up this post to make it sparkle, and added a video! No changes to the original recipe. Enjoy!
Parker House Rolls Recipe
Note that the rolls do not rise a second time once shaped.
- 2 1/4 teaspoons (1 envelope) active dry yeast
- 3 tablespoons lukewarm water
- 1 1/2 cups (355 ml) whole milk
- 3 tablespoons butter, cut into chunks
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 4 1/2 cups (630 g) flour, plus more if needed
- 6 tablespoons melted unsalted butter, for brushing the rolls
- 2 1/2-inch plain round cutter
- Pastry brush
1 Dissolve the yeast: In a bowl large enough to hold all the dough, sprinkle the yeast over the water and let it dissolve, about 5 minutes.
2 Warm the milk: In a saucepan over low heat, combine the milk, 3 tablespoons cut-up butter, sugar, and salt. Heat just until the butter melts and the milk feels warm to the touch of a fingertip. If the milk gets too hot, remove from the heat and let it cool to lukewarm.
3 Mix the dough: Stir the yeast mixture with a wooden spoon to mix the dissolved yeast and water. Tip in the milk mixture, still stirring, until smooth. Add 2 cups of the flour and stir again until the mixture is almost smooth, with just a few lumps.
Continue stirring in flour, 1 cup at a time, until the mixture forms a dough. It will be very soft.
4 Knead the dough: Turn the dough out onto a floured counter and knead for a few minutes until the dough is smooth, adding more flour as needed if the dough is very sticky.
5 Let the dough rise: Clean and dry the bowl, then grease lightly with a little vegetable oil. Set the dough in the bowl and turn it all around so it is oiled all over.
Cover with a clean, damp kitchen towel or plastic wrap, and set in a warm place to rise for 1 hour, or until it is puffy (it doesn’t need to double in bulk).
6 Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
7 Shape the rolls: Punch the dough down in the bowl, then transfer it to a lightly floured counter or pastry board. Knead until all the air is out.
Roll the dough to a 1/4-inch thickness. If it springs back as you try to roll it, let it rest for 5 minutes and then try again.
Use a 2 1/2-inch round biscuit or cookie cutter to stamp out rounds. Dip the cutter in flour often to avoid sticking, and stamp the rounds as close to each other as possible.
Press the back of a butter knife down the center of each round to form a crease; this is where you will fold the rolls in half. Dip the knife in flour if it starts to stick to the dough.
Brush the rounds with melted butter. Fold each round in half to make half-moon shapes and press the edges together lightly to seal them. Gather and reroll the scraps to make more rolls.
Transfer the rolls to the baking sheets, leaving 2-inches between rolls. Brush with more melted butter.
8 Bake the rolls: Transfer the baking sheets to the oven and bake for 15 to 18 minutes, rotating the sheets halfway through baking, until the rolls are puffed and golden. They're best served warm and fresh, but leftovers will keep for a few days in an airtight container at room temperature.
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Parker House Rolls
"Parker House rolls are as much of a tradition in the United States as any bread. They were created, so the story goes, by the Parker House in Boston, which was one of our great nineteenth-century hostelries. They have been copied by every cookbook author and every baker in the country. Some versions are exceedingly good and some are absolutely dreadful because they skimp on good ingredients. Parker House rolls should be delicate, soft, and rather sweet, typical of American rolls in the nineteenth century, and they consume butter by the tons. The dough itself need not be shaped into the classic Parker House foldover. Instead, you can cut the rolled-out dough into triangles and from them into crescent shapes, or you can cut the dough into strips and braid them. There are many other ways to treat this dough, which is pliable and pleasant to work with." &ndashJames Beard
- 2 packages active dry yeast
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup warm water (100ºF to 115ºF, approximately)
- 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) butter, cut into small pieces
- 2 cups warm milk
- 5 to 6 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup melted butter
- 1 egg, beaten with 2 tablespoons light cream or milk
Dissolve the yeast and the sugar in the warm water and allow to proof. Melt the 1/2 stick of butter in the warm milk, then combine with the yeast mixture in a large mixing bowl. Mix 2 to 3 cups of flour with the salt and stir, 1 cup at a time, into the mixture in the bowl, beating vigorously with a wooden spoon to make a soft sponge. (The dough will be wet and sticky.) Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, set in a warm place, and let the dough rise till doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Stir it down with a wooden spoon and add about 2 more cups of flour, 1 cup at a time, to make a dough that can be kneaded with ease, Turn out on a lightly floured board and knead until velvety smooth and very elastic press with the fingers to see if the dough is resilient. Let rest for a few minutes, then form the dough into a ball. Put into a butter bowl and turn so that the surface is thoroughly covered with butter. cover and put in a warm, draft-free place to rise again until doubled in bulk.
Punch the dough down with your fist, turn out on a lightly floured board, and let rest for several minutes, until you are able to roll it out to a thickness of 1/2 inch. Cut out rounds of dough with a round 2- and 2 1/2-inch cutter, or with a water glass dipped in flour. (The odd bits of leftover dough can be reworked into a ball, rolled out, and cut.) Brush the center of each round with melted butter. Take a pencil, a chopstick, or any cylinder of similar size and make a deep indentation in the center of the circle, without breaking through the dough. Fold over one-third of each round and press down to seal. Arrange these folded rolls on a buttered baking sheet about 1/2 inch apart. Brush again with melted butter and allow the rolls to rise until almost doubled in size. They will probably touch each other. Brush them with the egg wash and bake in a preheated 375ºF oven until lightly browned, about 20 minutes, depending on size. Test one by gently tapping it on the top. If done, you will hear a very faint hollow sound. Or take one, break it open carefully, and see if it is cooked inside.
Remove the rolls to a cooling rack and serve piping hot right from the oven, with plenty of butter and preserves or honey, if desired.
Roll dough on a floured surface into a rectangle 9 x 14 x 1/4 inches. Brush with melted butter and cut into five strips about 9 x 1 1/4 x 1/4 inches each. Stack and cut into 1 1/2-inch stacks. Place stacks, brushed with butter, cut side down, into buttered muffin tins. Follow directions above for rising and baking.
Roll small pieces of dough into 9-inch strips. They should be approximately 1/2 to 2/3-inch in diameter. Tie in loose knots and place on buttered cookie sheets. Let rise and bake according to directions above.
- 1/4 cup warm water (100 degrees to 110 degrees)
- 1 package active dry yeast
- 3 tablespoons sugar, plus a pinch
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus more for bowl and baking pan
- 1 cup milk, room temperature
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 4 to 5 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- Nonstick cooking spray
In the detached bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together water, yeast, and a pinch of sugar. Set aside until mixture is foamy, 5 to 10 minutes.
Attach bowl to mixer fitted with the dough-hook attachment. On low speed, add 7 tablespoons melted butter, milk, salt, remaining 3 tablespoons sugar, and eggs. Slowly add enough flour to make a sticky dough. Increase the speed to medium-high and knead until dough is smooth but still sticky, about 5 minutes. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead dough a few times. Brush the inside of a bowl with butter. Place dough in bowl cover bowl with plastic wrap sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside in a warm place until doubled in size, about 2 hours.
Generously brush a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with butter. Turn dough out onto a floured work surface. Roll into a 12-by-16-inch rectangle. Using a pizza wheel or a sharp knife, cut dough lengthwise into 4 equal strips. Cut dough crosswise into 8 equal sections. You will have 32 rectangles. Brush dough generously with remaining 3 tablespoons melted butter. Fold each rectangle in half, and place in prepared baking pan, overlapping slightly, 8 across, and 4 down. Brush tops with remaining 3 tablespoons melted butter. Cover pan with buttered plastic wrap. Set aside to rise until dough does not spring back when pressed with a finger, 25 to 30 minutes.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake until golden, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool for at least 5 minutes before turning out of pan.
- 1 ½ cups warm water
- 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast (from one ¼ oz. envelope)
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
- 4 ½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
- 1 cup (16 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted, divided, plus more for greasing pans
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- flaky salt, for serving
Combine water and yeast in a liquid measuring cup and whisk to combine. Let sit until foamy, about 5 minutes.
Combine the sugar, salt, and 4 ½ cups flour in a large bowl. Add yeast mixture, ½ cup melted butter, and eggs and stir with a wooden spoon until a dough forms (it will be slightly sticky). Turn dough onto a floured surface and knead with lightly floured hands until smooth, 4-5 minutes, continuing to flour the dough and the surface as you knead. Lightly grease the bowl with butter and place the dough back into the bowl, turning to coat. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1½ hours.
Butter two 8&rdquo round cake pans and set aside.
Divide dough into 2 equal pieces and roll each piece into a 24-inch log. Cut each length of dough into 16 equal pieces.
Using the heel of your hand, flatten each piece of dough into a 3-inch oval. Brush the ovals with melted butter, fold in half and pinch the edges to seal.
Place 10 rolls around the outer rim of the prepared pan with the pinched edges facing the sides of the pan. Place 5 in the middle, and one in the center. Repeat with the remaining pan. Cover loosely and let rise until doubled, 1 to 1½ hours. Bake at 375°F on middle rack until puffed and lightly golden brown, 18-20 minutes. Brush again with melted butter. Top with flaky salt.
Parker House Rolls
Combine 4 cups milk, 2 sticks butter, and sugar in a large pot. Bring to a simmer, and when the mixture is hot (but not boiling) turn off heat and allow to cool to warmer than lukewarm, about 30 to 45 minutes.
Sprinkle in the yeast and 8 cups of flour. Stir to combine, then cover and allow to rise for 1 hour.
After 1 hour, add baking powder, baking soda, salt, and 1 additional cup of flour. Stir to combine. Divide dough in half, then turn out onto floured surface. Knead dough for 8 to 10 minutes, then form into a ball and cover with a towel and allow to rise in a warm place. for 30 to 45 minutes. (Repeat with other half of dough, or store it for a later use.)
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Melt 2 sticks of butter in a saucepan.
Roll out dough 1/2 inch thick. Cut circles with a 2 1/2 inch cutter. Dunk each circle in melted butter, then immediately fold in half and place on a cookie sheet, flat side down. Press lightly to encourage sealing. Repeat with the rest of the dough. Cover with a towel and allow rolls to rise 30 to 45 minutes.
Bake for 15 minutes. Remove and serve immediately!
Wanted to thank you for following along during Pie Week last week. Children, ranch, laundry, and life have kept me from finishing up the last of my pie posts, but I&rsquoll try to get them up sometime in the coming days.
Welcome to my world! Jump on in. The water&rsquos warm.
In the meantime, I wanted to share this dinner roll recipe, since dinner rolls are necessary to life on Thanksgiving day.
For the record: I don&rsquot make beautiful, perfect bread. It&rsquos just not a knack I have. I&rsquom much better at impersonating old Broadway stars. But these rolls aren&rsquot about looks. They&rsquore about flavor&mdashbuttery, sinful, Thanksgiving table flavor.
Parker House Rolls are a simple/scrumptious dinner roll with a score or split down the middle, which practically begs you to pull it apart and slap a pat of softened butter right inside. I&rsquove seen Parker House Rolls formed (and placed on the baking pan) in different ways. One way (which Joy the Baker demonstrates so very nicely) involves forming dough into balls, then making a deep crease or impression in the center.
The second way, which is the method my mom employed, involves cutting flat discs of dough, dipping the discs in butter, and folding them in half.
I have no idea which style reflects the original Parker House Roll from the historic Parker House Hotel in Boston. I&rsquove never even been to Boston.
And why is that? How can I be forty-one years old and never have visited such a major American city? I feel swindled.
I&rsquoll work that out later. For now&hellipwe have rolls to make!
I&rsquom using my basic dough recipe (the same one I use for my cinnamon rolls and no-knead dinner rolls) but instead of canola oil, this time I&rsquom using butter.
Combine butter and sugar in a pot, then pour in whole milk.
Turn on the burner and simmer the mixture until it&rsquos hot but not boiling, then turn off the heat.
Let this cool until it&rsquos warm but not hot.
&ldquoWarm but not hot.&rdquo Man, I sure have a way with words, don&rsquot I?
When it&rsquos warm but not hot, sprinkle some active dry yeast over the surface&hellip
Followed by eight cups of flour.
Stir this together, then cover the pot and put it in a warm, draft-free place for an hour.
If you play your cards right, this is what it&rsquoll look like. Should be nice and light and bubbly.
Next, throw a cup of flour on top of the dough&hellip
Then add a heaping teaspoon of baking powder&hellip
A scant teaspoon of baking soda&hellip
And a heaping tablespoon of salt.
Then break out your elbow grease and stir this together until it&rsquos combined. It&rsquos a little physically taxing, but you&rsquoll make it!
Divide the dough in half. It&rsquos easier to work with that way, and if you don&rsquot need more than about 24 rolls, you can save the rest of the dough for later.
(Or make some cinnamon rolls! You know you want to.)
Now, throw half of the dough onto a floured surface and knead it for 8 to 10 minutes. Be sure to ask a local alien if you can borrow his hand, as you can plainly see was my approach.
After kneading, form the dough in a large ball, cover it, and let it sit and rise for 30 to 45 minutes.
After that, it&rsquoll be nice and smooth. Roll it out (gently don&rsquot stretch too much) to about a half-inch thick&hellip
Melt some butter in a saucepan. Use a round cutter to cut circles of dough.
Dunk each dough circle in the melted butter&hellip
Then fold the circle in half, gently pressing to encourage it to &ldquoseal.&rdquo
Now, here&rsquos another place where you can take a couple of different approaches. My mom laid the rolls on their sides, like this. But you can also use a baking dish with higher sides and stand the rolls upright so the seam is facing up. If you do this, you&rsquoll need to crowd the rolls a bit so that they&rsquoll support one another.
Doesn&rsquot it just seem like this should start talking? Wokka wokka wokka.
Oh, sorry. missed a couple of steps. Covered rolls and let them rise for 30 minutes. Baked &rsquoem for 15 minutes. Amen. Note that if you lay them individually on a baking sheet, their shape can vary to well behaved (as seen above) to freakish and malformed. If you crowd them into a pan face up, you&rsquoll wind up with a pan of more uniform dinner rolls. Up to you!
Make sure that the dough rises in a warm, draft-free place. It may take anywhere from 1 to 2 hours for the dough to double in size, depending on temperature and humidity.
Before brushing with butter and sprinkling with salt, store cooled rolls, wrapped in plastic, up to 2 days. Reheat in a 350-degree oven, 10 minutes.
To freeze, place dough balls in a parchment-lined baking pan cover with plastic and freeze. Store in freezer bags, 3 months. To bake, let rise in baking pan in a warm place, covered with a damp towel, until rolls just touch, 2 1/2 to 3 hours, then follow step 4.
The Best Parker House Bread Rolls from Omni Parker House Rolls
Posted By Savita
I am so fond of fresh breads/rolls, just-out-of-the-oven kinda-fresh! Growing up, our meal always included bread of some kind - flat bread, fried bread, yeast bread, or egg bread, one of these were always there to dunk-in curry/stews. by-virtue of those delicious family-meals, my bread adventures are pretty-deep-rooted and seems to be never ending. stay with me and you will see a lot of unexpected (popular, almost-popular, never heard-before) breads on this blog :)
In June, this year, one of my Stuffed Bread was featured on Parade.com. I am so grateful to Bethany Moncel, contributor at Parade.com for including my recipe in her - 6 Ways to Reinvent the Humble Potato post.
But, Today is no flat or stuffed bread day! Today, we are making a buttery, pillow-y, yeast-y, flavorful, all-american pull-apart bread. hmmm. quiet a mouthful!
These buttery and fluffy rolls are American classic, said to-be originated in 19th-century, by a baker at Boston's Historical Hotel - Omni Parker House.
You will find a lot of recipes of Parker House Rolls all-over the internet. My initial research landed me on recipe of, one of the famous name in culinary world, my all-time favorite, Mr. Bobby Flay, the most experienced and humble man, I have ever seen in food and media industry. hats off!
My version of Parker House Rolls sure have influences from his recipe. I won't say, I have adapted it from his recipe, since I ended-up changing a lot of things to make it my own. It all started with number of eggs. Mr. Flay's recipe needed three eggs and was for 24 rolls. I wanted to use, no more than one egg per 12 rolls. I knew, I have to adjust everything else per my requirement.
Rule of thumb - "Either follow the recipe as-is or if you change something, re-visit every other ingredient." After removing two eggs, I ended up changing almost whole recipe. Plus, I have baked only 12 rolls.
Feel free to follow the link above to check Mr. Flay's recipe for 24 Parker House Rolls. I bet it won't disappoint you. For my version of 12 rolls, read on.
Recently, I have learnt the use of Dry Powdered Milk in baking. Powdered Milk (compared to regular milk) can make cakes/breads moist and rich without increasing the amount of liquid in your recipe. I have added, this little secret ingredient to Parker House Rolls for some extra oomph.
I'm happy with the changes I made. Rolls were fluffy, moist, exceptionally lite, and not egg-y at all!! My major concern was the eggs. I can't eat egg-heavy rolls. Somehow, egg-rich rolls make me full in just one roll and I don't like that. Use of one egg makes roll moist and fluffy yet doesn't overpower the taste and very lite. In next recipe, I am sure going to make Parker House Rolls with Wheat Flour. Won't be classic but healthy!! Let's see how it goes.
PS: Don't forget to make some soup or stew for these delicious rolls. I ended-up making Roasted Garlic and Tomato soup after tasting just one roll! These buttery delicious rolls were demanding company of a soup or curry! (in a good way ))
Not just soups/stews/curries, Parker House Rolls are great for breakfast with some butter on side and a cup of hot Chai! My all-time favorite!
1 1 / 4 cups plus 2 tablespoons whole milk
4 cups all-purpose or bread flour, plus more as needed
2 teaspoons salt, plus more for sprinkling
2 1 / 4 teaspoons (1 package) instant yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
4 tablespoons (1 / 2 stick) butter, cubed, plus
4 tablespoons melted butter for brushing Oil or more butter for greasing
1. Heat the milk in the microwave or in a pot on the stove until it reaches about 100°F, a little hotter than lukewarm. To mix the dough in a stand mixer, combine the flour, salt, yeast, sugar, cubed butter, and warmed milk in the mixer bowl. With a dough hook, mix on medium-low speed until the ingredients are combined, then on medium speed until the dough is tacky and smooth, 8 to 10 minutes.
2. To mix the dough in a food processor, pulse the dry ingredients together with the butter a few times to combine, then, with the machine running, add the milk through the feed tube and process until the dough is a well-defined, barely sticky, easy-to-handle ball, about 30 seconds — don’t overprocess here or the dough will lose its pillowy texture. Turn it out onto the counter and knead (you shouldn’t need much, if any, flour) until smooth, 5 or 6 minutes.
3. Grease a large bowl, shape the dough into a rough ball, put it in the bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Let rest at room temperature until the dough has doubled in size, 2 hours or more.
4. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or grease it with a little oil or butter. Turn the dough out onto a lightly oiled counter and cut it into 18 pieces. Roll each piece into a smooth ball and put them on the baking sheet, spaced about 1/2 inch apart. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise in a warm place until the dough balls start to touch each other,
1 to 1 1 / 2 hours. (For a warm place, I usually heat the oven as low as it will go, then turn off the heat, let it cool back down a bit, and let the dough rise in the oven for the first hour, then move the dough on top of the stove for the last 30 minutes while I preheat the oven for baking.)
5. Heat the oven to 350°F. Brush the rolls with half of the melted butter and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown. Brush with the remaining melted butter, sprinkle with a little salt, and serve while they’re still warm.
Garlic-Parsley Parker House Rolls
Mix some minced garlic and parsley into the melted butter that you brush on the rolls before baking.
Put the milk, yeast, bread flour, sugar, and potato flakes in the bowl of your stand mixer. Knead until the dough is smooth and elastic. The dough will be quite stiff at this point.
Add the butter and salt and continue kneading until the butter is completely incorporated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside until the dough has doubled in size, about an hour.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly dust your work surface with flour. Turn out the dough, pat it down to flatten it. Fold the left side towards the middle, then the top, then the right side, and the bottom to form a rough square.
With a rolling pin, roll the dough to about 9 by 12 inches. Using a pizza cutter or sharp knife, cut the dough into three 12-inch strips, then cut each strip into 4 equal pieces, so you have 12 squares.
Using a chopstick, the handle of a wooden spoon, or a similar object, press a line onto each square going straight across (not diagonally) so it's not quite across the center of the square. This will help keep the dough from unfolding when it bakes. Fold the dough over at the crease, with the larger portion folded over the smaller one, like a clam with an overbite.
Arrange the folded dough on the baking sheet, leaving space between them if you don't want them to touch, or placing them nearly touching if you prefer pull-apart buns. Cover the buns with plastic wrap and set aside until doubled in size, half the time it took for the first rise (about 30 minutes).
When the buns have doubled in size, bake at 350°F until the buns are nicely browned, about 25 minutes. Remove the buns from the pan and let them cool on a rack. Serve the same day.
Whisk yeast and ¼ cup warm water (110°-115°) in a small bowl let stand 5 minutes.
Heat milk in a small saucepan over medium until just warm. Combine shortening, sugar, and kosher salt in a large bowl. Add warm milk whisk to blend, breaking up shortening into small clumps (it may not melt completely). Whisk in yeast mixture and egg. Add 3½ cups flour stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until dough forms. Knead dough with lightly floured hands on a lightly floured surface until smooth, 4–5 minutes. Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl turn to coat. Cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let stand at room temperature until doubled, about 1½ hours.
Preheat oven to 350°. Melt butter in a small saucepan. Lightly brush baking dish with some melted butter. Punch down dough divide into 4 equal pieces. Working with 1 piece at a time, roll out on a lightly floured surface into a 12x6" rectangle.
Cut lengthwise into three 2"-wide strips cut each crosswise into three 4x2" rectangles. Brush half of each (about 2x2") with melted butter fold unbuttered side over, allowing a ¼-inch overhang. Place flat in 1 corner of dish, folded edge against short side of dish. Add remaining rolls, shingling to form 1 long row. Repeat with remaining dough for 4 rows. Brush with melted butter, loosely cover with plastic, and chill at least 30 minutes or up to 6 hours.
Bake rolls until golden and puffed, 25–35 minutes. Brush with butter sprinkle sea salt over. Serve warm.
How would you rate Parker House Rolls?
Without exagerration, the best bread I've ever had. Time consuming but worth it.
These were relatively easy to make. The rolls were a hit at Thanksgiving dinner last night. I did as someone else said below: Note that If you find these Parker House dinner rolls shaping/cutting directions difficult to carry out, you can simply make 36 balls of equally sized dough, flatten each one at the center with a rolling pin (so the ball becomes and elongated oval), brush the interior with melted butter, then fold the dough over on itself (so the buttered interior is in the center), then continue on with the instructions as directed. This is how they were originally done (and quickly) at the Parker House Hotel in Boston during the 1870s. No matter how you accomplish it, the idea is to fold the dough over on itself and to have a buttered center. Cutting the dough to a precise rectangle as outlined in this recipe when it wants to spring back and not take that shape is the only thing that was difficult about this otherwise crowd-pleasing recipe. Shaping them as I've outlined above instead solves that problem. Thanks so much!
These were quite delicious. I strain bacon fat and save it for recipes, and I used it as shortening in these instead of vegetable shortening. These rolls got RAVE reviews. I made two batches everyone loved them so much.
Can you please make a video for these rolls?
These rolls were delicious! I took the advice of other reviewers and replaced the vegetable shortening with melted butter, and used the shaping technique provided in a review from November 2018 (it was much clearer than the one provided by Bon Appetit). The final butter addition felt excessive, so I didn't add any extra butter after pulling them out of the oven and don't regret it - they were already perfectly buttery. Overall, a really great recipe that I will definitely be making again!
Super easy to follow for the dough instructions, and a little less obvious for the shaping instructions. Ultimately mine turned out a little uneven but just as tasty. I used butter instead of vegetable shortening without issue.
I cannot recall how many MANY years I've used this recipe, always to rave reviews. Caveat: (Reason for only four stars) You should never use Crisco for ANYTHING. It was not originally intended for human consumption and is not a real food. Also no Canola oil or Pam. I use all melted real butter in the same amounts called for. Far healthier. This is a great "show-off" recipe and becomes a family/friends tradition. A video would be helpful for anyone, especially first-time bakers.
Can you make a video for this
Hi all, I made this for the first time and the results were amazing but still need a bit of insight. 1) I don't think I used quite enough salt as they were a tad bland in the center and 2) they were just a bit dry. I was careful not to over-proof and didn't over bake either. I do live in Germany so had to use pflanzenfett - which is basically the same thing but in a refrigerated bar. Maybe just that but would love insight from anyone who made these. Thx
Austinite (TX) in Berlin (DE)
Is there a way to make this without crisco/shortening?
I’ve made this before and loved it. Is there a way to make it ahead?
Question: I'm assuming the vegetable shortening is Crisco instead of the butter usually specified in Parker House roll recipes? Any particular reason for this? Could you use half Crisco and half butter like I do with pie crusts?
Note that If you find these Parker House dinner rolls shaping/cutting directions difficult to carry out, you can simply make 36 balls of equally sized dough, flatten each one at the center with a rolling pin (so the ball becomes and elongated oval), brush the interior with melted butter, then fold the dough over on itself (so the buttered interior is in the center), then continue on with the instructions as directed. This is how they were originally done (and quickly) at the Parker House Hotel in Boston during the 1870s. No matter how you accomplish it, the idea is to fold the dough over on itself and to have a buttered center. Cutting the dough to a precise rectangle as outlined in this recipe when it wants to spring back and not take that shape is the only thing that was difficult about this otherwise crowd-pleasing recipe. Shaping them as I've outlined above instead solves that problem.
Seriously easy recipe. If you get caught up on the shaping directions just make 36 balls and bake as directed. Came out great. Thank you for this!
A bread recipe for people who think making bread is intimidating. Seriously. It's super easy and SO INSANELY IMPRESSIVE. I make these every Thanksgiving and alway receive so many compliments.