Thursday, November 25, 2010

Cloverleaf Rolls

Happy Thanksgiving!    We are celebrating Thanksgiving today just with my immediate family, which is fun.   We don't have to drive anywhere, so I can spend the day cooking, drinking wine, listening to Lynn Rosetto Kasper's Turkey Confidential and watching Detroit's Thanksgiving Day Parade (which I still call "Hudson's Thanksgiving Day Parade" because that is what it once was!).   Tomorrow I'll hit some Black Friday sales and then I am volunteering for a Selma event tomorrow making donuts to raise money to help local farmers.    Then off to my sister's for a bigger family celebration.  

My niece is home for Thanksgiving from college and this will be the first time we will celebrate Thanksgiving without my folks.   I still can't believe they are gone - last year, they both were well enough to eat Thanksgiving turkey with us and we did a StoryCorp interview and everyone cried.  By that time, it was obvious to all that Mom was dying.   My mom didn't come to know it until I got another doctor to tell her she wasn't going to beat this cancer because her oncologist was either a wimp or a scam artist and just wanted the $2500 a dose the Medicare would pay for chemo.   But at Thanksgiving, I didn't know that I would have to do this.   And of course, none of us could have predicted Mom and Dad would both go in the same year.   So, I am glad we did the interview so the grandkids would have something to remember the grandparents by.   Now with both my parents gone, I guess as the eldest I am the matriarch of the family now!  I can be "old Aunt Cindy, smellin' of lilac water" and forcing everyone to kiss me on the cheek.

But back to today....what's on the menu?   I decided I am not brining the bird.  Instead, I will do a riff on  Martha Stewart's Herb Roasted Turkey with whatever herbs I have in the house. I bought a small Peacock Farm turkey, and we'll have green bean casserole, mashed potatoes and gravy, cranberry sauce from scratch and some pie.   My son was selling Grand Traverse Pie Company pies for his Washington DC trip.   I will start off my morning by taking the bird out of the fridge for a couple hours to come to room temp and cleaning the fridge out (an annual Thanksgiving tradition) so I can make room for leftovers.  And I will make cloverleaf rolls.   Here's my's a variant of a Martha Stewart classic white bread recipe that works for me every time.  

Cloverleaf Rolls - Makes 12 

      2 teaspoons instant yeast (or 1 envelope active dry yeast)
      1 cup warm water (110 degrees) water
      2 tablespoons honey, divided
      2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for bowl, pans, and brushing
      3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface and dusting
      2 teaspoons coarse salt
      1 egg

Sprinkle yeast over 1/2 cup water. Add 1 tablespoon or so of the honey. Whisk until yeast dissolves. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes.  Transfer to the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add butter and remaining water and honey. Whisk flour with salt; add half to yeast. Mix on low speed until smooth. Add remaining flour, 1 cup at a time, mixing until dough comes away from sides of bowl and forms a ragged, slightly sticky ball. 

Butter a large bowl. Knead dough on a floured surface until smooth and elastic but still slightly tacky, about 5 minutes. Shape into a ball. Transfer to prepared bowl; cover with plastic wrap. Let dough stand in a warm place until it doubles in volume (it should not spring back when pressed), about 1 hour. 

Butter a muffin pan. Punch down dough. Divide dough into 36 pieces, roll into balls.   Place 3 balls in each muffin cup,  cover with a towel. Let stand until dough rises about 1 inch above top of pans, 45 minutes to 1 hour. 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a small bowl, beat egg until blended; brush onto rolls. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.  Let rolls cool 15 minutes before serving.

And why not listen to Alice's Restaurant while you are at it?


CallieK said...

I grew up in Sarnia, just up the St Clair river on the Canadian side and I remember watching the Hudson's Parade as a child. Hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving full of good memories.

Tightwad Mom said...

Happy Thanksgiving! Sounds like you have an action packed weekend! I hope you enjoy every minute of it!

Buttercup said...

What a poignant post - it made me think of Garrison Keillor's Thanksgiving monologue. As one grows older, it is a day when the spirits of those who used to sit around the table crowd around to share the traditional foods. It helps that you have a new generation to pass the traditions to. Happy matriarchy.

My mother used to make cloverleaf rolls - I'll have to try yours.