I think a lot of people avoid yeast dough recipes because of the time factor. But you just can't beat hand-made yeast rolls in flavor and texture. This is a great recipe to try for a couple of reasons. First, this recipe only requires one rising, so as far as yeast rolls go, they are pretty quick. Secondly, the main ingredient is cottage cheese, which is what gives these rolls their high protein content. (But I promise, you do not taste the cottage cheese in the final product.) They are great for a quick breakfast in the morning because you're not just eating carbs - you get the protein as well.... and try spreading some jam or Nutella on them. If you have a child who doesn't eat meat, this would be a great snack for him/her. Of course, they are wonderful served with soup. And if you use a lower-fat cottage cheese, they really are quite healthy. I hope you'll give them a try. This recipe comes from the More-with-Less Cookbook by Doris Janzen Longacre. Here's what you need:
- 2 pkgs. active dry yeast
- 1/2 Cup lukewarm water
- 2 Cups cottage cheese
- 1/4 Cup sugar
- 2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- 4 to 4-1/2 Cups all-purpose flour (*If I had wheat germ on hand, I would substitute a 1/2 cup of it for the flour - it will add extra nutrition.)
Dissolve the yeast in the 1/2 Cup of warm water. How warm? Think of running a baby's bath.... that's the same temperature that you would use for yeast. Not too hot; not too cold. I run my tap water and adjust it until I can put the inner part of my wrist under the running water and it feels comfortably warm. It's a good idea (especially if your yeast is getting close to the sell by date) to proof your yeast. And you do that by just adding a pinch of sugar into the yeast/water solution. If it bubbles up, you've got good yeast. Mine was just starting to bubble here...
Next, heat the cottage cheese until it is lukewarm. Then combine in a large bowl: the cottage cheese, sugar, salt, baking soda, eggs, and yeast mixture.
Next, gradually add the flour. Do this a little at a time. Whenever you're making a yeast dough, go slow with the flour additions. You may need a little more or less than the recipe states. The type of flour used (each type has a different protein content) and environmental conditions have a lot to do with this.
This is a wet and sticky dough (as you can see above), so work the flour into it, 1 cup at a time, in the bowl, using a large spoon until it gets easy enough to handle. When you've got most of the flour mixed in, it should look something like this:
So at this point, I've added the 4 cups of flour into it. It's cooperative (I can work it with my hands), but it's still quite sticky. Now is when I dump it out onto a floured board or countertop and knead it for 5 minutes. As I'm kneading it, I'm adding flour to the board so the dough grabs it and becomes less sticky.
After 5 minutes of kneading and working in the last of the flour, your dough should look smooth. It will still be a bit sticky to the touch (because of the cottage cheese), but it won't be goopy or impossible to work with. It should look like this:
Put the dough into a greased bowl, then turn it over so the greased side of the dough is facing up.
Cover the top of your bowl with saran wrap. Then place a kitchen towel over it. Put it in a warm place and let it rise until doubled - about 1-1/2 hours.
Now is a good time to preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Using the palm of your hand, punch the dough down, then turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. You may need to incorporate a little flour into it to get it workable again. Form it into a rectangular shape, and score it with a bench knife (or regular knife) so you get even-sized rolls.
When you're satisfied with the score marks, go ahead and cut all the way through the dough. You should have enough rolls to fill up 2 baking dishes. I use a 9x13 and a smaller one.
Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden:
You should get at least 24 rolls, but sometimes I get more - it depends on the size you make them, obviously. They are best served warm.