Time Required: 3.5 hours

Pumpkin Rolls

Versatile dinner rolls with a spiced pumpkin twist.
Perfect for all your autumnal meal needs.

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Notes:

These rolls have a nice hint of pumpkin and spices without being super strong, so they go well with a lot of different fall meals. I recommend eating them warm with autumnal soups like butternut squash soup or chili, or slicing them in half horizontally, toasting them, and topping them with butter and jam, mashed avocado, or eggs.

Alternately, slice them in half horizontally and use them as sandwich buns; they make especially good bread for Thanksgiving leftovers sandwiches! If you want larger rolls for sandwiches, you can divide the dough into 9 large rolls instead of 16 smaller rolls and just bake them for longer, roughly 25-30 minutes.

Pumpkin Rolls

Ingredients

  • 2 packets instant yeast
  • 113g (½ cup) warm milk, roughly 110°F
  • 1 15oz can pumpkin purée
  • 25g (2 tbsp) room temperature butter
  • 3 large eggs
  • 780g (6 ½ cups) all purpose flour
  • 110g (½ cup packed) brown sugar
  • 2 ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground cloves
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp allspice
  • Cooking twine
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • Roughly 3 tbsp Maldon sea salt
  • 3-4 cinnamon sticks

Steps

  1. In a large bowl, add the flour, salt, ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and allspice and stir to combine evenly.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the milk, yeast, and pumpkin purée. Using the paddle attachment, mix on low until evenly combined.
  3. While still mixing on low speed, add the butter, then add 2 of the eggs one at a time, mixing to combine between each.
  4. Add in roughly ⅓ of the flour mixture and mix to combine evenly, then switch to the dough hook attachment on your mixer.
  5. Start mixing on medium speed and add in the remaining flour mixture, roughly ⅓ at a time. Continue mixing with the dough hook attachment to knead for roughly 3-7 minutes, or until a smooth, soft dough forms. The dough should be somewhat stretchy and bounce back slowly if you poke it.
  6. Lightly oil a large bowl and place the dough ball in the bowl, flipping once to coat the ball in oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rise in a room temperature place for 60-90 minutes, until doubled.
  7. While the dough rises, cut 48 pieces of twine, roughly 10" long each.
  8. Gently punch down the dough and turn it out onto an oiled surface.
  9. Divide the dough into 16 equal pieces and shape each into a smooth ball by pulling the sides down and pressing them together at the bottom of the ball. Roll the bottom of each ball on the oiled surface a bit, pinching slightly with the pinky sides of your hands to seal.
  10. Cover the dough balls with a clean kitchen towel while you finish each ball as follows:
    1. Place 3 pieces of twine on the oiled surface overlapping each other, intersecting in the middle with equal spaces between them so it looks like the surface has 6 equal wedges coming together to form a circle.
    2. Place a dough ball centered on the intersection of the 3 pieces of twine.
    3. For each of the 3 pieces of twine, pull both ends up and tie them together in a double knot at the top of the dough ball, just tight enough to sit completely against the dough without digging into it.
    4. Once you've tied all 3 strands of twine at the top, cut off the excess twine ends, leaving just the knots at the top.
    5. Place the dough ball back under the kitchen towel with the other dough balls until all have been tied with twine.
  11. Preheat the oven to 350°F and let the dough balls rest covered with the kitchen towel at room temperature for 30 minutes, or until slightly puffy and just starting to push into the twine a bit.
  12. Beat the remaining egg and the 1 tbsp milk together in a small bowl.
  13. Place the dough balls on parchment lined baking sheets, leaving at least 2" of room between them. Brush the top and sides of each bun thoroughly with the egg and milk mixture, then immediately sprinkle sea salt evenly over the top of each bun while the egg wash is still wet.
  14. Bake for about 20 minutes until evenly golden brown, or until the rolls measure at least 190°F internally.
  15. Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheets for 3-5 minutes, then move them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  16. Use kitchen scissors to cut the twine on each roll and peel the twine off gently to avoid tearing the rolls.
  17. Cut the cinnamon sticks into small pieces and insert a piece into the top of each pumpkin roll to look like a stem, then enjoy!
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