2 cups warm water (110 to 115 degrees)
2/3 cup instant nonfat dry milk
2 T. yeast
1/4 cup sugar
2 t. salt
1/3 cup butter, shortening, or margarine (I use butter flavor crisco)
5 to 6 cups all-purpose flour, or bread flour
In large bowl or electric mixer, combine water and yeast; let sit 5 minutes. Add dry milk yeast, then sugar, salt, butter, egg, and 2 cups flour. Mix on low speed until ingredients are wet, then for 2 minutes at medium speed. Add 2 cups flour; mix on low speed until ingredients are wet, then for 2 minutes at medium speed. (Dough will be getting stiff and remaining flour may need to be mixed in by hand). Add about ½ cup flour and mix again, by hand or mixer. Dough should be soft, not overly sticky, and not stiff (It is not necessary to use the entire amount of flour).
Scrape dough off sides of bowl and pour about one tablespoon of vegetable oil all around sides of bowl. Turn dough over in bowl so it is covered with oil. (This helps prevent dough from drying out). Cover with plastic and allow to rise in warm place until double in size, about 45 minutes.
Scrape dough out onto floured board. Divide dough into two. Turn dough over so it is floured on both sides; gently flatten to about 1 inch thick. With rolling pin, roll out to a rectangle about 12 inches long, 8 inches wide, and ¼ inch thick. Brush with melted butter. With pizza cutter or very sharp knife, cut dough in half to make two strips about 4 inches wide. Make cuts through strips of dough every 2 inches, making about 12 pieces of dough.
Starting with short end, roll up one piece of dough, with butter on the inside. Place roll on parchment-lined pan with other short end down on the paper (I just use a greased pan). Repeat with remaining pieces of dough. Be sure all rolls face the same direction on baking pan. You can roll the rolls however way you want..
Cover lightly with plastic wrap and allow to rise until double in size, about 1 to 1 ½ hours. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, or until light to medium golden brown. Brush tops of rolls with melted butter. Makes 2 dozen rolls.
Helpful Tips for Making Rolls
Always add flour gradually and keep dough as soft as you can handle. A soft dough will produce a lighter roll.
It is not necessary to use the entire amount of flour called for in the recipe—add only enough flour to make dough manageable.
To shorten dough’s rising time, use one of these methods:
1) When dough is thoroughly mixed, oil bowl and cover dough with plastic wrap. Fill sink or larger bowl with about 2 inches of hot water or enough water to come about half or three-fourths the way up outside the dough bowl. Place bowl of dough in bowl of water and allow to rise until double in size.
2) Just before mixing dough, turn oven on lowest possible temperature. Place a pan of hot water on bottom oven rack. When dough is thoroughly mixed, place in oiled bowl. Cover dough with plastic wrap; place in oven. Turn oven off, shut oven door, and allow dough to rise until double in size, about 50 to 60 minutes. Shape or cut into desired rolls. Place rolls on greased or parchment-lined pans and allow to rise until double in size. Bake according to recipe.
Brush top of rolls with butter when first taken from oven.