I made these soft dinner rolls with the addition of browned butter and sage. The sage flavor is very subtle and the browned butter adds a wonderful earthy flavor. The two ingredients make them set them apart from the usual, classic dinner rolls. Why not add a little extra bling-bling for a great Thanksgiving (or other) feast. Besides, who doesn’t like browned butter and sautéed sage? Well, at least I really love this combination. Recently, I am adding those two ingredients in/on almost every meal. So I thought to myself, why not try a recipe for classic Thanksgiving dinner rolls WITH sage and browned butter? And, I am pleased to say that they turned out gorgeous.
The recipe is pretty straight forward: There are two proving times involved (each time about 1 hour) and you can divide the work for these dinner rolls between two days – which is great for Thanksgiving. There is enough food prepping anyway on this day.
By the way, we Austrians, like Canadians, celebrate Thanksgiving in October. It’s not really a big deal though – and oh no, not comparable with Thanksgiving in the US at all. It’s more of a church holiday without a big feast with family and friends. Families usually reunite during Christmas time in Austria. I guess that’s our biggest holiday and not so much around Thanksgiving. Being here in Cambridge, MA on Thanksgiving means in some way embracing local holidays though. Every year we are gathering with a group of international friends and of course, have a good time and eat fantastic, comforting food! These fluffy dinner rolls will for sure make it to every Thanksgiving table from now on.
Recipe for dinner rolls
First of all, chop the sage leaves.
Heat the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until it starts to bubble and foam. Add the sage leaves and continue heating and stirring until the butter turns golden/light brown (about 30 seconds). Remove from the heat and let cool.
Meanwhile, combine warm milk and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add yeast to milk-sugar mixture and let it stand for 5 minutes to dissolve. With a sturdy spoon, stir in cooled butter and sage …
… then add 1/2 of the flour, and salt. Mix it thoroughly, and then add the remaining flour. Mix the ingredients until they come together to a sticky dough.
Turn the dough out onto a floured counter and knead until smooth, about 5 to 10 minutes. The dough should still be moist and a little sticky.
Oil a clean mixing bowl and return the dough to the bowl. (If you want to divide the work, put the dough in the fridge now.) Let it rise covered at room temperature until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and divide it into 16 equal pieces. Shape each piece of dough into a smooth, tight round ball. Here is a video how you can do that.
Place the rolls onto an 8×8-inch (20 cm) baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Let the buns rise covered until puffy, about 1 hour. Brush the buns carefully with egg wash two times and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Put them in the center rack of the preheated oven and bake them for 20-25 minutes at 350 °F (180 °C) or until golden brown on top.
Let the dinner rolls cool a little in the pan and serve.
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