Thursday, October 7, 2010

Feather Rolls

I’m not sure where this recipe originated.  I got it years ago from my friend Karen.  Maybe this little note on it will refresh someone’s memory, “A Sunday dinner standby during the ‘30’s, these no-knead pan rolls made with mashed potatoes are as light as feathers.  If you know the original source please share it with me.

The original recipe calls for an electric mixer, wooden spoon and a bit of muscle.  I make these in my stand up mixer adding all the ingredients in at the same time and mixing it together with the bread hook.  Then I remove the bowl from the mixer.  Cover it with plastic and place it in the fridge until I’m ready to shape them.  You’ve heard about the one pot meal.  Well, this is the one bowl bread.

I have held this dough in the fridge for up to 24 hours with great success never thinking that I might want to keep it any longer than that, until… my friend Dave asked if my recipe could keep in the fridge for a week like his grandmother would when he was a kid.  Pulling away just enough for that night’s dinner then returning the rest of the dough to the fridge for another meal. 

Great question, I didn’t have the answer.  Time for an experiment, I made up a batch of dough and held it in the fridge in a gallon zip bag for a week and “Viola”.  Perfect feather rolls.  Mystery solved.

After letting the dough rest at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes I lightly flour my hands and roll the dough into a log and slice it into portions with a knife. Then I lightly flour my hands again and roll each portion into a ball pinching any seams closed as needed.  In my last batch I placed a chunk of cheddar cheese in the middle of each roll which resulted in a light cheesy middle that oozed just a little.


5          cups                flour
1          Tbsp.               active dry yeast
1 ½      cups                warm water (110 degrees)
½         cup                  mashed cooked potato, about one med. size
1/3       cup                  butter, melted
¼         cup                  sugar
1          tsp.                  salt

Place 2 cups of flour with the yeast in a large mixing bowl and mix to blend.

In a small mixing bowl mash the potato, add the butter, sugar water and salt.

Add to the dry mix and beat with an electric mixer on low for about 30 seconds scraping the down the sides.  Then mix on high for 3 minutes.

With a wooden spoon stir in the remaining 3 cups of flour.
Cover and refrigerate for 2 - 24 hours.

Remove from the fridge. Let rest on a lightly floured surface covered with a kitchen towel for 10 - 15 min. Lightly grease a 9 X 13 in pan with pan coating or butter.

With lightly floured hands shape dough into 24 rolls (be sure to pinch any seams closed or it won’t rise) and place in the pan.

Cover and let rise in a warm place (such as your oven or microwave) until almost doubled in size (about 40 min to an hour, when it’s cold outside it may take up to an hour and a half).

Bake in a 400 degree oven for 18 - 20 minute or until golden brown.


  1. Hi Susan,
    I'm so glad I found your blog, after you commented on Foodbuzz, and also on Twitter. I follow you on Twitter, now, also listed you, and I am following your blog too.
    I love your blog, this feather rolls recipe, and all the others so far, that I looked at. Love your beautiful photos, of your food, as well! Great to be friend with you!

  2. great recipe. I do make this @ home all the time. I use the Kitchen Aide mixer to make the dough, it made my life so much easy:)

  3. I love this! I bet the cheese inside just adds that perfect WOW factor. Thanks for the recipe...going to try this.

  4. Nice buns and using mashed potato...mmm sounds great. Thanks for the recipe with us. I do love to make buns too :) I can imagine your excitement at making them especially when they turned out soft and fluffy :) Great post and great pics !

  5. Hi Susan,
    Your rolls sound so perfect and moist. I love the mashed potatoes added to it. Thanks for joining my event, glad to have you on board :)

  6. Hello again,
    Could you please email me your image, and a link to this recipe you are submitting? I need it for the roundup I will be posting on the 31st. From my post I will link to your recipe. Thanks.

  7. Hi Susan, I found you on YBR and I couldn't wait to tell you how much I like this recipe. I see you have lots of great ones, can't wait to come back!

  8. These rolls really do look feathery light. Glad I found your blog on YBR. I was also born in Honolulu, but grew up on Maui. It's always nice to meet another local and you look like you've got some excellent recipes on here as well. By the way, I'm holding a CSN giveaway and my blog and you're welcome to come by and enter.