Monday, October 15, 2012

Harvest Rolls and another Give-Away

"The thankful receiver bears a plentiful harvest"
                                                            William Blake

Fall is full of beauty and color, but when I was younger, I remember it as also being a time of harvest.  My mother's family were farmers; it was my great, great grandfather, John Jacob Sellner, who came from Germany (Silesia) and cleared the land to farm in Maryland.  So, his granddaughter, my Grandma Gladys, taught my grandfather how to farm after he retired from the Marine Corps (the second time) and they bought a farm in Brandywine.
Kelly had our "farm gene" and loved growing vegetables in raised beds in her back yard
As kids, we'd help get the last tomatoes, corn, and green beans picked, then also harvest butternut and acorn squash.  Green tomatoes were wrapped in a single layer of newspaper and laid on crates in the root cellar; we'd have fresh tomatoes for Thanksgiving!  Additionally, both my grandmother's and then, my mother's kitchen would be busy with canning tomatoes, green beans, and corn relish to fill the pantry.  I learned, not only how to preserve food, but moreover, how to stretch the food budget.

The weather was blustery today and memories of those days came back and what this time meant to me.  The Harvest Rolls are my tribute to all the farmers and their families, who after a long day in the fields, deserve a wonderful meal awaiting them.

Harvest Rolls
1/2 cup milk
4 T unsalted butter
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 T molasses
1 large egg
1 tsp. Kosher salt
2 pkg. (2T) dry yeast
5 cup King Arthur Bread Flour
2/3 cup Whole Wheat Flour

additional unsalted butter
sunflower seeds (optional)

In a stand mixer, using the paddle attachment, mix the sugar, molasses, egg, and salt.  Microwave the butter and milk together in a 2-cup glass measure on high for 40 seconds.  You may have to "nuke" it a little longer to completely melt the butter, but do it 20 seconds at a time.  Add cool water to bring the liquid up to the 2-cup measurement, then, add 2 tablespoons more.  While the mixer is running on low, slowly add the milk/butter/water and mix together.  Still with the mixer running, add the dry yeast and once it has combined, stop and allow the yeast to "bloom"...about 5-7 minutes.

Add 3 cups of bread flour and mix together.  Remove the paddle attachment, scraping it with a spatula, and place the dough hook on the mixer.  Add the remaining dough and knead until the sides of the dough are clean.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board and knead until smooth.
Spray a large bowl with baking spray or brush with melted butter and place dough, first upside down, then flip the dough over to right-side up.  Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise about 45 minutes or until doubled.

Punch down the dough and turn it out again onto the board.  Divide dough into 12 pieces and knead into round rolls.

Place on a buttered baking sheet, brush melted butter on top of the rolls and cover with plastic wrap.  At this point, preheat oven to 375F-degrees.
  When the oven comes up to temperature (about 20-30 minutes) the rolls should be doubled in size.
 I also sprayed the tops with Quick Shine and sprinkled a few sunflower seeds on top.
Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, until golden brown.  Whether you're having a big meal, or just soup and a salad, these rolls will be the perfect addition. Enjoy!

...oh yeah, I do have another Give-Away.  I made this Sunflower necklace to symbolize the harvest and of course, Kelly's love of them.  Just post a comment if you'd like a chance to be chosen. XOXO



  1. dear susan, oh my goodness i am baking these! we love bread and bisquits. i loved catching up here, little ari baking was the cutest thing ever, and your apple cake was really beautiful (would sure love a piece right now...)
    how did you make the necklace? it's so pretty, but please don't include me in your lovely giveaway, not really being a necklace wearer. take good care, xxx lori

    1. The necklace is one of my 3-d paper sunflowers, then I seal it with ice resin--which makes paper look like porcelain. I didn't get a good photograph, but up close you can kind of see a little tiny ladybug on one of the leaves. XOXO

  2. Dear Susan, the pan has just arrived!!! I love both pan and the beautiful card. Thank you so much, my dear.
    These harvest buns look are so soft and tempting, perfect with a bowl of soup.
    wow, you even made that sunflower necklace...I am in awe of your talent.

    1. I can only imagine the wonderful baked doughnuts you'll come up with, Angie. I'm in awe of your baking:-D

    2. Hi Susan, I have just baked 12 doughnuts using your recipe, but with refined spelt flour and yogurt (that's what I have in the pantry). They are so soft and moist...really moist and delicious. My husband just came home and ate one with white chocolate coating (he could have eaten 3 in a row if only allowed ;-))) My 3 cats are fighting for the carton ;-!

    3. LOL!! Obviously, your husband shares my love of doughnuts--will they be on the blog? I happen to have some spelt to grind and would love a tried & true recipe, XOXO

    4. The post is up and running ;-) I have shared 4 doughnuts with my neighbour ;-) She is 82 years old and I thought I might just bring a few doughnuts over. Hope she likes them as much we do.
      Pumpkin Spelt Doughnuts

  3. Oh these rolls look lovely, a definite must bake!

    The sunflower necklace is beautiful, you did a great job with it! Hmmm, if my name is chosen I would ask that you give the necklace to a friend or family member who needs a pick-me-up and a reminder of Kelly.

    1. Rest assure, everyone that meant something to Kelly has received a necklace; I did hydrangea necklaces for them, which is what Kelly carried in her wedding bouquet. XOXO

  4. You MADE that necklace? Beautiful!

    I love hearing about Kelly. Her spirit lives on. And the rolls look great.

    1. Kelly had a natural green thumb in the garden and my grandparents would be proud that she took to raising vegetables! XOXO

  5. I've never made bread with molasses except sweet fruit they have a sweetness to them?
    Jane x
    PS Sunflowers remind me of the original Calendar Girls.

    1. Believe it or not, these are not a sweet roll, because of the ratio of flour to the sugar and molasses...just wholesome. I actually made my hubby a Quorn "chik" patty on his last night. The Sunflowers remind me of them too! Love that movie and what they did to raise money for cancer, XOXO

  6. Hi Susan...I want to try everything you post about. These rolls would be perfect with my soup suppers. I'm glad I read all your comments. Now I know how you made the sunflower on the necklace.

    1. Do you have a favorite flower I could do for you? We're having a lot of soup lately too and bread goes well. XOXO

    2. Oh all-time favorite is the white daisy with a yellow center. I love to keep a bunch of fresh ones in my home.

  7. Wonderful memories my darling, great sharing

  8. I love reading about your special memories, too. And what a gorgeous necklace! The bread recipe sounds amazing. I've always made a lot of bread and love trying a new recipe. I just bought a loaf of bread at the bakery and it has molasses in it...fragrant and so yummy!

  9. How gorgeous the necklace is! It is a work of art and so special. Kelly was lucky to have you as her mother and I know you miss her so much. She was a beautiful lady and what a green thumb she had. I bet she grows sunflowers in Heaven :)
    The harvest rolls look so delish. I could use one right now!

  10. The rolls look yummy! Thanks for sharing your special memories of Kelly with us!
    I am so impressed that you made the necklace! It's gorgeous!

  11. Hi Susan..Ohhh, hope it's not too late to put my name in the hat for the gorgeous. I love amber.

    The rolls? Yummy.

    Kelly must be so happy to know you are following her bucket list items for you to the T! Good job, Susan. Sending lots of love to you on this beautiful autumn day. Susan

  12. Your rolls look delicious. I have a bread making book from the library at the moment- it is full of great sounding recipes. I think I may be in danger of piling the pounds back on! The necklace is beautiful - just like Kelly. x

  13. I am new to your blog but am quickly becoming a regular! I love your necklace and I also love sunflowers. I think, though, that I love the rolls more....Must make...

  14. The necklace is beautiful, my friend. Thinking of you!! xoxox