Dinner Rolls

Dinner rolls are a nice filling side that I love to serve with Italian food. I like placing butter on hot rolls and enjoying them, or having cooled rolls sliced and filled with spaghetti. These dinner rolls are not sweet and are better as a side with a bigger meal rather than a meal by itself. I really enjoyed these rolls and will enjoy them with many meals to come. I have frozen most of them since it is just Josh and I, but if we were traveling more, I would likely be giving them to someone as a gift. I like to make my white bread as a gift, but these will soon join them. It also took me 2 1/2 hours to proof with my yeast starter, and I baked my rolls for 25 minutes, but they didn’t have too much color, just a light browning.

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine 3 cups flour, 1 cup starter (1 cup water, 1 cup four, and 1 packet of active yeast), 5 Tbsp melted butter, a pinch of salt, 1 egg, and 1/4 cup milk. Mix until dough cones together.
  2. Divide dough into 16 pieces. Roll into balls and place on a large baking sheet. Let rise for 1-3 hours until doubled in size.
  3. Heat oven to 350 F. Bake for 20-30 minutes until tops are browned and top is firm.

Homemade Mini Bagels

This may seem like a lot of steps, but it’s worth it for these beautiful bagels. The light and fluffy interior and the chewy exterior makes these bagels a classic bagel. I made mini bagels by making 12 with this dough, to make full sized bagels, divide the dough into 9 or 10 pieces instead. I used a spatula to flip the in the boiling water and that’s why they are somewhat misshapen. I would recommend using a knife or chop sticks to reduce damage. Finally, these bagels are rather crisp outside, so take your time cutting them!

  1. In a bowl, combine 1 Tbsp Sugar, 1 1/2 tsp yeast, and 1 1/4 water. Wait for your yeast to bloom.
  2. Once bloomed and foamy on top, add 2 cups of flour and a pinch of salt. Mix the dough and slowly add an additional 1 1/2 – 2 cups flour until it becomes stiff. You will have to knead it once it becomes too tough to stir.
  3. Form into a ball, coat a bowl with non-stick spray, turn the dough in the bowl. cover and let rise till doubled, about 1 hour.
  4. Once risen, punch down dough. Flour your counter, and spray non-stick spray on a large baking sheet. Roll the dough out into a log, and divide in half. Out of each half, cut 6 pieces, giving a total of 12 balls of dough. Create a hole in the center, and make it larger then you expect since it will shrink as the dough expands. Set on greased baking sheet, let rest until doubled, about 1 hour.
  5. Turn on your broiler, and bring a large pot of water to a full boil. Broil your bagels for 2 minutes on the first side, then flip and broil the second side for 2 minutes. Then remove from oven.
  6. Once broiled, turn your oven to 350 F. Add your bagels to the fully boiling water. Boil on each side for 1 minute, then remove to a metal drying rack. Let dry for 5 minutes before returning to your baking sheet. Then, bake your bagels for 40-50 minutes until golden brown exterior.

Homemade Ravioli

Homemade pasta is an easy task and is the sign of a real chef. You can buy frozen, but it is easy and quick to make your own. I’ve been meaning to make my own pasta for years. I’ve seen so many cooking shows where they make the “nest” of flour, make a hole in the center, add some eggs, and slowly mix to become a beautiful pasta dough. Though I have every intention of living my dream and making it that way, I also have a stand mixer and I wanted to make this dough quickly, so next time I make a homemade pasta (or so I say). This recipe made enough pasta for about a pound of pasta. As ravioli, it made 22, but it could easily make 24-25 if you had a pasta roller and could thin it out more evenly. I made a simple cheese mix with what I had. If you wanted more flavor variety, you could add spinach, some herbs, or other veggies/purées. The egg was essential to keep the ravioli closed, however you should press all the edges together as well. These ravioli were very delicious, and the flavor was so unique because they were homemade. This dish will easily impress any guest.

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add 2 cups flour, 2 eggs, 2 Tbsp oil, and a pinch of salt. Use a dough hook, and beat over low speed till it comes together.
  2. Once the dough has come together and fully formed, knead dough on floured counter for a minute, then wrap in saran and let sit for 15 minutes.
  3. While dough is resting, mix together 1/4 cup cottage cheese and 1/4 cup mozzarella for your filling. In another container, add one egg and beat till fully mixed.
  4. Flour a large work surface. Begin rolling out pasta dough, rotating the dough by a quarter turn every couple passes. Roll out the dough as thin as you can by hand, less than 1/8th inch if possible. Cut the dough into 1 1/2 inch by 1 1/2 inch squares using a sharp knife.
  5. Begin placing about 1 Tbsp of cheese filling onto every other square. Brush egg wash on the outer edges of the squares without filling.
  6. Place the egg wash square on top of a cheese square and pinch the edges closed. Dust lightly with flour and place on baking sheet. Repeat this step until all ravioli are formed.
  7. At this point, you can begin boil them immediately, 3-5 minutes until they float. You can refrigerate them well sealled for up to 2-3 days, or place them into a freezer bag and keep them frozen for 1-2 months.

Homemade Flour Tortillas

These Flour tortilla were so easy and came out so delicious, it makes me wonder why anyone buys tortillas! This recipe was so fast, and I found this recipe everywhere, it was so popular! Here is the link to these tortillas, but they all seem to be re-posts from the original.

This is a simple alternative to bread if you are already out, and these tortilla aren’t overly sweet or salty. They are very neutral. We’ve done tuna salad and tacos on them so far, and not only are they strong, but they are still soft taste great with both foods! I highly recommend trying this recipe. You may never buy tortillas again!

  1. In a bowl combine 3 cups flour, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/3 cup oil, and 1 cup warm water. Combine until a smooth dough forms.
  2. Transfer to a floured work space and divide into 16 balls. Coat each in flour then flatten with your hand. Cover with a clean towel and let relax for 15 minutes.
  3. Roll out each round into a 6-7 inch circle, do not stack them! Cover the ones you are not actively working with.
  4. Heat a large skillet to medium heat. Place your circle of dough into the hot skillet. Cook on the first side for about a minute, you should see bubbling in the dough. Flip and cook an additional 20 seconds.
  5. Place finished tortillas in a sealed container, or place between two large serving plates if you plan to eat relatively soon.

Cinnamon Rolls with Starter

These cinnamon rolls were delicious! They were not too sweet, and could easily be eaten with breakfast for that reason. If you were going to eat them as a dessert, I would recommend making an icing, just because they lack a bit of the sweetness on their own that you’d want in a dessert.

I did have some problems with this recipe. First, I store my starter in the fridge, and to add cold milk to that, it took a very long time for my dough to rise. I made this dough around lunch time, and by dinner time, the dough wasn’t even at room temp yet. The next morning, however, it was fully proofed. Once I mixed in the additional ingredients, I placed it on a floured surface, and it just stuck to everything. It was a very soft and sticky dough that loved my counter top. I mixed in more flour to no avail, and so i deiced to roll it out on a generous bed of flour. I mixed the filling and coated the dough,and tried to roll, but it was just so sticky I had to move very slowly, constantly scraping the dough off the counter. I didn’t want to overwork the dough when I was mixing, but I should have added even more flour. I would also proof the rolls before baking, because they didn’t rise during the baking step, they only expanded in width. I’ve made some alterations to the recipe and added it below.

Original recipe can be found here!

  1. Heat 1/2 cup of butter until partially melted. Add to 3 1/2 cups flour in your mixing bowl. Mix in 1 Tbsp sugar and 1/2 cup milk, then add starter until dough comes together. Cover and let proof in a warm spot for 2-3 hours
  2. Sprinkle 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp baking soda over the dough and gently knead into dough, add more flour as needed, but don’t overwork.
  3. Roll out the dough into a rectangle until it is about 1/2 inch thick.
  4. In a side bowl, melt 5 Tbsp butter. Add 1/2 brown sugar and 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon and stir. Spread evenly over dough.
  5. Starting along the long edge, roll up the dough. Cut the roll into 1 inch thick slices.
  6. Heat oven to 400 F
  7. Place slices into a well greased baking dish and bake for 30 minutes or until golden.