Sometimes classic favorites deserve a new twist. In this recipe from chefs and Little Donkey owners Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette, golden-brown rolls are stuffed with Chinese sausage and scallions. The rolls are buttery, light and airy, with a surprising burst of flavor.
The recipe was inspired by the original Parker House roll created in the 1870s, which was named after the popular Boston Omni Parker House hotel, still open today. Since the hotel is just a few blocks away from bustling Chinatown, Oringer and Bissonnette wanted to combine the two iconic city locations into one dish. As Oringer says, it's the "perfect dish for our menu, because everyone loves Parker House rolls in Boston where they were invented."
Stuffed Parker House Rolls
Recipe adapted from Little Donkey, Cambridge, MA
Yield: 16 rolls
Prep Time: 30 minutes, plus 1 hour and 30 minutes of proofing time
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour, plus 1 hour and 30 minutes of proofing time
3 tablespoons, plus 1 teaspoon, sugar
2½ teaspoons (one ¼-ounce packet) instant dry yeast
¼ cup 115º water
2½ cups bread flour
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon salt
1 cup room-temperature whole milk
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled, plus more for brushing
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 ounces Chinese sausage, roughly chopped
7 scallions, white parts only, thinly sliced
1. In a small bowl, whisk together the sugar and yeast until fully combined. While continuously whisking, stream in the water and mix until at least half of the mixture is dissolved. Let rest for 10 minutes.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours and salt. In the bowl of a stand mixer, add the yeast mixture, flour mixture, milk and butter, and knead on medium speed for 5 minutes. Move the dough to a large greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Place in a warm area and allow to bulk proof until it has doubled in size, 1 hour.
3. Meanwhile, make the filling: In a food processor, finely mince the Chinese sausage. In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil and add the scallions; sweat until translucent, 5 minutes. Add the minced Chinese sausage and cook until it is fully warmed through, 2 minutes. Chill the filling completely and set aside.
4. Preheat the oven to 350º. Punch down the dough and portion into 16 evenly sized round balls. Using a rolling pin, roll out a dough ball so it’s 3 inches in diameter then stuff it with 1½ teaspoons of the sausage filling. Close up the dough ball and place in an 8-inch greased square cake pan. Repeat the process with the remaining dough balls, cover the pan with plastic wrap and allow to proof for 30 minutes.
5. Bake the rolls until they are golden brown in color, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and brush generously with melted butter. Allow to sit for 10 minutes, then turn over the pan to release the rolls. Serve immediately or at room temperature.
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