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Introduction & method

There are few things more satisfying than making your own bread. I wouldn't say it's easy, in fact this particular recipe is downright time-consuming and messy. But if you persevere, you'll get amazing results.

Soft White Bread Rolls Recipe

I only recently got the hang of making soft bread rolls, and I'm so glad I did! Essentially, there are three things you need to be careful of.

1) This recipe makes a very wet, sloppy dough. It's meant to be like that, so avoid the temptation to add more flour - this will just dry the dough out and the result won't be soft.

2) Knead, knead, knead. You must work the dough to get the gluten going and elasticity developing.

3) Prove long and slow. For the first rise you want the dough to more or less triple in size. This can take 3-4 hours.

Mix the caster sugar into the flour. Sprinkle the salt on one side of the bowl, and the yeast on the other. Stir in the oil and water, and mix thoroughly. Tip the dough out onto your work surface - don't use any flour or oil at this stage. 

Begin kneading by smearing the dough over the worktop. Use a steel scraper or ruler to gather the dough together, and then smear it out flat again. Repeat this process as many times as you need to get the dough forming into a ball. Squeeze it, stretch it, push it and pull it until the dough is smooth and elastic. You should be able to stretch it to about 60cm (2 feet) without it snapping.

Now form the dough into a ball and put it in a bowl. Cover it with plastic film and leave it to rise. A long, slow, cool rise is preferable to a fast warm one. Some recipe suggest leaving it in the fridge overnight to rise.

When the dough has trebled in size, tip it out onto an oiled work surface. Press it down to expel the air, and roll it into a thick sausage. If the dough is too sticky to work, you can sprinkle a little flour on it now. Cut the sausage into 6 equal pieces, and roll each one into a ball. Place them on a baking sheet lined with greaseproof paper, about 2cm (1 inch) apart - you want them close enough together so they will touch when they have risen again.

Cover with a clean tea towel and let them rise until doubled in size. Preheat the oven to 230°C (446°F). Make sure the oven is really hot, and then bake the rolls for 15 minutes. 

The video above is from the Keef Cooks YouTube channel. Click here to see the video recipe of Soft White Bread Rolls on YouTube.

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Ingredients & Info

•  250 grams strong white bread flour
•  150 ml lukewarm water
•  7 grams yeast
•  1 tsp salt
•  1 tsp caster sugar
•  1.5 tbsp olive oil

US (cups, sticks, etc)

Makes 6 rolls
Prep time: 4 hours.
Cooking time: 15 minutes.
Total time: 4 hours 15 minutes.

Watch the video on YouTube