Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Garlic Parmesan Dinner Rolls – Can Something Look Too Good?

Let me start by saying that these garlic Parmesan dinner rolls were really great – crusty and cheesy on the outside, tender and garlicky inside, and visually gorgeous. Ironically, it’s that last adjective that may cause problems.

These looks so inviting, so tasty, and so beautiful that it’s almost impossible not to be let down when you bite into one of these and realize it’s just a dinner roll. It’s a great dinner roll, a special dinner roll, but a dinner roll nonetheless.

As I said in the video, when the towel is pulled back (we call that, “breadbasket burlesque” in the business), and these lovelies are finally revealed, your guest’s eyes will send messages to their stomachs to get ready for something way more awesome than a dinner roll.

So, this becomes a classic case of having to manage expectations. You need to make sure your diners know this is a humble bread bun, not some mini calzone, or other stuffed wonder of modern baking.

Anyway, it’s a great problem to have. So the next time you want something a little above and beyond the plain roll, I hope you give these a try. By the way, the leftover rolls make about the best salami sandwich, ever. Enjoy!

1 package dry active yeast
1 cup warm water
2 1/4 cups flour, divided (add 1/2 cup to the sponge, and the rest as shown). 
NOTE: Don't add all the flour at once. Add some, and continue adding until your dough looks like mine. You may need more flour as you go for the board.
1/2 tsp white sugar
1 tsp fine salt
1 tbsp olive oil
1 egg
freshly, finely grated Parmesan, as needed
1 1/2 tbsp melted butter
2-3 cloves crushed garlic
2 tbsp freshly chopped Italian parsley
black pepper and cayenne to taste
*Bake at 400 for about 20 minutes

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