My method for preparing Parker House Rolls produces perfect results with minimal effort. I use defrosted frozen dinner roll dough. (The “From Scratch Recipe” follows at the bottom of this post.)
Your personal preference for the size of the finished rolls, the size of muffin pans you use, and how much time you allot for defrosting and baking will influence which choice you make from the following suggestions.
My choice is for a roll with three splits at the top. I use three dough balls per roll and a large two-cup baking pan for each dinner roll. I defrost them in the pans and bake them as soon as they rise the first time. Including a baking time of 15 to 18 minutes in a 350 degree (F) oven, the total time to allow is five hours starting from frozen dough balls.
Alternately you may want to use only one or two dough balls and bake them in cup cake pans and reduce your overall allotted time to fours hours while still baking for 15 to 18 minutes.
You can stretch out the yield of even more by just putting one ball in each cup cake sized compartment. One will still make a decent 2 inch sized roll and cut your required time to about 3 hours from start to finish including a 15 minute bake time.
A special variation is seasoned rolls. Sprinkling any seasoning such as parsley, sage, rosemary, oregano, or thyme to a melted butter wash on the top at the end of the first rise, makes a welcomed surprise. Bake for 15 minutes.
If you want a darker crust, brush each roll with egg wash prior to baking. (egg white wash is one egg and 1/2 of an egg shell full of cold water, beaten to blend thoroughly).
When I make dinner rolls from scratch, let me refer you to recipe I use. Parker House Roll Recipe from The Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer.
It uses 1C scalded milk, 1Tbsp sugar, 2 Tbsp butter, and 3/4 tsp salt. When milk is lukewarm add 2 tsp yeast that has been dissolved in 2 Tbsp lukewarm water. Add 1 XL egg, mix into 2-1/2 C sifted bread flour, place into a bowl, light brush with melted butter; let rise until doubled in size(about 2 hours). Roll out,, cut into 2 inch squares and fold the corners into the center. Place in a greased 13 by 9 loaf pan and bake in a 425 degree oven for about 20 minutes.
More Thanksgiving Day Dinner Recipes: