Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Rye Dinner Rolls with Crisp Tops

Rye Dinner Rolls with Crisp Tops (Adapted from Gourmet)

For the dough

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup rye flour
1 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
3/4 teaspoon sugar
1 scant cup warm water

For rye-crisp tops

1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons rye flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large egg white
pinch salt

To prepare the dough

In a large bowl, whisk together flours, yeast, salt and sugar. Add water and stir until a soft dough forms.

Scoop dough out onto a floured surface and knead until dough is elastic and smooth, but still supple and tacky, adding sprinkles of flour if necessary to keep it from sticking to your hands. Shape dough into a ball and place it in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning to coat the top. Cover bowl and let rise until doubled, about 1 to 2 hours.

Punch down dough and remove from the bowl - fold into thirds as you would a letter. Evenly divide dough into 16 pieces and roll each into a tight, smooth ball. Arrange balls of dough onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and cover - set aside and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.

To prepare rye-crisp tops

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flours and salt. Stir in water and oil, mixing until a soft dough forms. Scoop dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead a few times. Evenly divide dough into 16 small pieces - roll each piece out on a lightly floured surface to a rough 2" thin round. Place rounds in a single layer onto a sheet of parchment paper.

In a small bowl, beat together egg white and pinch of salt. Lightly brush mixture over the rounds and let dry slightly while the rolls finish rising.

Brush each risen ball of dough with the remaining beaten egg white. Gently lay a round of the rye-crisp dough, egg-wash side up, on the top of each dough ball. Place baking sheet into the oven and bake until the rolls are golden brown, about 20 minutes. Remove and let cool down a bit before serving.

Makes 16 small rolls.

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