Monday, December 26, 2011

Parker House Roll

"A Parker House roll is a bread roll made by flattening the center of a ball of dough with a rolling pin so that it becomes an oval shape and then folding the oval in half. They are made with milk and are generally quite buttery, soft, and slightly sweet with a crispy shell."

"They are often sold frozen for quick baking by bakeries such as Sister Schubert's. Fannie Farmer gives a recipe in her 1896 Boston Cooking-School Cook Book for them."

"They were invented at the Parker House Hotel in Boston, and are still served there. The Omni Parker House [built 1927] is a hotel in Boston, Massachusetts, currently owned by Omni Hotels. The name of the hotel derives from the original Parker House, which first opened in 1855. Founder Harvey D. Parker ran the hotel until his death in 1884, when the business passed on to his partners."

From The Rumford Complete Cookbook

Parker House Rolls Recipe

2 Cups Flour
2 Teaspoons Rumford*
Baking Powder [*Rumford brand baking powder suggested but any brand baking powder may be used]
2 Teaspoons Sugar
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
2 Tablespoons Butter
2/3 Cup Milk

"Mix as for Rumford Biscuit: In making breads raised with baking powder always sift the powder with the dry ingredients to insure thorough incorporation and perfect mixing. In making baking powder biscuits, always add enough liquid to make a very soft dough, as this is one of the first requirements for good biscuits. Have the liquid cold, and mix with a flexible knife in preference to handling it with either a spoon or the hand, because the steel blade is cold, and cuts and mixes more thoroughly. The less biscuits are handled, the better. If placed a little apart in the pan they will be lighter and more crusty."

Parker House Roll by Hamburger Helper on Flickr

"Always add liquid to dry ingredients — they will mix more smoothly. The smaller the biscuits and muffins, the hotter may be the oven. To obtain a brown crust, brush over with milk before baking. For a tender crust, brush with melted butter. Sift well together the flour, salt and baking powder; rub in the butter as lightly as possible with the fingers, just working it until the butter is well blended with the flour. Then mix to a very soft dough with the milk, or milk and water, having this always as cold as possible. Mix with a flexible knife in preference to either a spoon or the hand, as the steel blade of the knife is colder than the spoon, and also because it cuts and mixes the dough more thoroughly. Turn the dough onto a well-floured board, and roll or pat it with the hand until about three-quarters of an inch thick."

"Roll to one-third inch in thickness, cut with a round or oval cutter, and crease in the centre with the handle of a caseknife first dipped in flour. Brush one-half with melted butter and fold over. Put in a pan, one-half inch apart, and bake in a quick oven fifteen minutes."

Text Credits: Wikipedia
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Image Credit: Flickr

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