I make these bread rolls 3 times each week for my husband and son, and there are never any left. Firstly I'll let you in on a little secret....they're easy peasy! People often say to me, "I'd love to be able to make these", "I can cook but I can't bake" or "my friend says bread is really difficult to make". Now I'll be honest with you....unless you're aiming to make a lion head shaped bread sculpture from 4 flavored doughs (cue the best bread week episode of the Great British Bake Off!), then I beg to differ. These take a whole 5 ingredients to make, well 6 if you count water, and create 8 super tasty, soft bread rolls / barms / baps / buns....probably best not to start that debate now.
I bought all of my ingredients from my local Asda but you could source them at your nearest supermarket or simply add them to your online shopping basket.
Let's get baking!
500g strong white bread flour
7g easy bake yeast
2 tsp caster sugar
2 tsp salt
2 tbsp oil (olive or sunflower)
300ml luke warm water
Mix the flour, yeast, sugar, salt and oil into a bowl.
Make a little well in the middle of the mixture.
Pour the luke warm water into the well.
Don't worry you don't need a stand mixer! It absolutely can be done by hand and is a great arm workout. If you do though, the dough hook is the attachment you need at this stage.
Mix all the ingredients with a wooden spoon for a couple of minutes and then get your hands in! Now comes kneading. This is a great stress relief and for optimum dough results, you'll want to aim to do this for about 10 minutes. If you're unsure about kneading, there's some great YouTube tutorials but the basic technique mainly uses the base of your palm to push into the dough on a flat surface.
I usually switch mine to a mid range setting increasing to one below the highest. This will take from 5-7 minutes.
Once the dough has become less sticky and you're able to stretch and knead it without looking like you have hands made of dough, it's ready to prove!
All you need to do is pop it into a bowl that's lined with a little oil. I pour a little bit into my hands and rub it round the sides to give it a good coating.
You then need to cover it with either a clean tea towel or clingfilm. If using clingfilm, make sure you place it loosely on top as the bread will double in size.
Leave this in your kitchen (a warm place is preferable) for about 1 hour.
After an hour, your dough should look something like this!
Now comes another stress relieving technique - knocking back!
This quite simply means punching the dough lightly with your fists on a flat surface. Don't go overboard, about 10 mini punches is ok.
After knocking the dough back, split into 8 equal pieces. You can be super precise and weigh these if you want. It's not something I do but if you want them perfectly equal, your best option is to weigh the dough then divide by 8.
I also use scissors rather than a knife for dividing as I find it so much easier.
To make the rolls, you will want to pull the dough surface and tuck underneath to give you a smooth finish on top. For those of you that have ever used a bun ring in your hair, this is the exact techniques you want to be using here!
Next, place on a baking tray covered with baking paper. Cover with the tea towel or fresh clingfilm (remember not to pull the clingfilm tightly) and leave to prove again for another hour.
After half an hour of proving, switch the oven on to 200 degrees (180 degrees for fan ovens).
After an hour, your dough balls should look something like this.
As your oven has been pre-heating for the past half an hour, you can pop the rolls straight in for 15-20 minutes.
My oven does perfect rolls at 17 minutes but every oven is different so best to check at 15.
When they've turned golden brown, place them on a wire cooling rack and leave them to cool. Tip - To check bread is cooked through, turn the roll upside down and tap. It should sound hollow when cooked.
I store mine in a large sealed food bag in the cupboard and use them for my husbands sandwiches for a couple of days.
I hope you enjoy these as much as me and my family do!