I remember my first attempt to make bread. I was 16. As with most of my cooking ventures then, I opened the only cookbook I had available, my mom’s red and white Better Homes and Gardens binder, and chose my recipe. I bought yeast packets, mixed them up with sugar and milk, added flour and a few other ingredients, and kneaded. I shaped the dough into french loaves and waited. Nothing happened. I baked the dough and ate the tasty, but rather solid bread. What I didn’t understand from the cookbook instructions was that the liquid had to be warm, but not too hot, to encourage the yeast to grow.
My dad had talked of making bread when I still lived with him, but somehow, it never happened. Learning to make bread was definitely a time when I needed my dad to show me how. Luckily, I do have his recipe, passed down from Mammaw, for making southern cornbread stuffing!
I was so glad when I met my future mother-in-law, Lucile, to learn that she was an excellent cook, and made bread! I now cherish a number of family recipes from her that we still enjoy. Butterhorn rolls is one that I used to make for holiday dinners, but I haven’t made them in years–not since my boys lived at home, and were all with me for holidays.
I had a retail job miracle this year, and managed to take Thanksgiving week as vacation time, so I cooked a traditional meal which I shared with my mom and two of my four children, plus my son, Jonathan’s, fiance. Though Brighde and I eat a low-gluten diet these days, for better health, Lucile’s rolls are worth cheating on our diet for. We made butterhorn rolls as part of our feast fare. In tribute to Lucile, and all the feasts and family time I shared with her, I would like to offer you her recipe.
Lucile’s Butterhorn Rolls
- 1 cup lukewarm milk (whole, organic)
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 package (1 tablespoon) dry yeast
- 1/2 cup melted shortening (Crisco butter flavored)
- 2 beaten eggs (yes, organic free range)
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 4 cups high quality unbleached flour (Bob’s Red Mill) plus more for kneading
Add sugar to warm (slightly warmer than skin temperature) milk. Stir in yeast. Alternate adding remaining wet and dry ingredients, to maintain temperature, stirring, and then kneading, until flour is incorporated and dough is elastic.
Place dough in a greased bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm place until double in size, 2 to 3 hours. Punch down. Divide into 3 or 4 pieces. roll into rectangles about 1/4″ thick. Cut rectangles into wedges about 3″ by 5″ (like refrigerator crescent rolls), roll up, shape into a crescent, and place on a greased baking sheet or silpat mat, 2″ apart, and let rise again.
Bake at 400 degrees F for about 15 minutes, until golden. Serve warm with butter.
These are great to pair with Cream of Celery soup! (Click “Home” in the left panel and scroll down to the previous post.)
To me, Thanksgiving is the best time of the year to share good food and to spend time with those I love best, around the table in person, and in spirit. Happy Holidays, from our family to yours!