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On a roll — A tasty staple on Thanksgiving tables

The turkey and dressing are in the oven. The pies and cranberry sauce are cooling and ready to serve. But it's not Thanksgiving without the rolls, right?

With just a day to spare, you've got a few options, depending on how much time or money you want to spend:

Grab a bag of ready-made rolls from your supermarket's bakery as you pick up other last-minute Thanksgiving items. Don't serve them straight from the bag, of course. Spiff them up putting them in a basket and warming them in the oven for a few minutes. Cover them with a colorful dish towel so they don't dry out.

Pick up your order from a local bakery or restaurant known for its rolls. This makes them a little more special rather than an afterthought.

"Last year, the Lion House bakery hand-rolled and baked 42,000 rolls the few days before Thanksgiving," said Neil Wilkinson, director of marketing for Temple Square Hospitality. "It is set to do even more this year."

Most of the orders were placed by last Sunday, "but there will be drop-by business available, for both the Lion House Pantry and all Deseret Book Pantry locations, up to Thanksgiving," added Wilkinson. "We have had some people already give us their orders for Christmas and next year's Thanksgiving." To do this, call 363-5466.

Granite Bakery stopped taking rolls orders Tuesday night, but "we try to keep an abundance of them in the bakery that are sold on a first-come, first-serve basis," said owner Russ Oliver. The store also sells frozen bread dough that you can take home and bake yourself. Between the frozen and baked rolls, Granite Bakery sells more than 1,000 dozen rolls during the Thanksgiving season.

You can expect to pay $3 to $4 per dozen at Granite Bakery, or $4.99 per dozen at the Lion House.

Again, warm them briefly before serving — at least enough to soften a pat of butter when it's spread on the roll.

Pop open a package of refrigerated biscuits or crescent roll dough. (Knocking a "poppin' fresh" can on your counter is a great stress reliever!) To dress them up, try brushing them with beaten whole egg or egg white, Caesar or Italian dressing, or milk, just before baking. Or after baking, brush them with a little butter or olive oil. You can also sprinkle on some chopped herbs, sesame or poppy seeds, cornmeal or bread crumbs, advise the Pillsbury editors in their book "Dough Magic!"

Go semi-homemade by buying frozen yeast bread dough, available in some bakeries and at the supermarket. The aroma of freshly baked bread will waft throughout your home. When you pull that hot fresh pan of rolls from the oven, let everybody be impressed. There's no need to explain that you didn't spend the morning mixing and kneading. Only Aunt Beth will be able to discern the difference — and what does it matter, as long as they taste fabulous?

You can add a special touch to frozen rolls by shaping them into swirls, cloverleafs or other designs. Meanwhile, keep your kids busy by letting them roll out their own gobs of dough into turkey rolls.

Check through your gadget graveyard for your seldom-used bread machine and press it into service. It can do all the mixing and kneading. All you've got to do is pull the dough out at the right time to shape it and let it rise. And, of course, bake it.

Again, pulled fresh and hot from the oven, these will be a little higher on the "Wow!" scale than cold, hard "store-bought" rolls.

Invest some time to make your own from-scratch dough. You can wear your flour-dusted apron as a badge of honor!

SWIRL ROLLS

12 Rhodes frozen Texas rolls or 24 dinner rolls, thawed but still cold

Flour

Nonstick cooking spray

Roll 1 Texas roll (or 2 dinner rolls) into a 10-inch rope. Roll in flour and form a coil. Place coil in a sprayed muffin tin. Cover with plastic wrap that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray to keep it from sticking to the dough. Let rise until double in size. Remove wrap and bake at 350 degrees 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove from pan to cool. — Rhodes International

TURKEY DINNER ROLLS

2 Rhodes frozen Texas rolls or 2 dinner rolls, thawed but still cold

1 egg white, beaten

Sliced almonds

Slivered almonds

Chopped pecans

Peppercorns

Flatten one roll for the body and place on a large sprayed baking sheet. Cut a narrow piece out of the remaining roll to be used as a head and neck. Roll it into a rope shape and place on one side of body to form a slight curve. Cut head piece on an angle and pull down against neck to form a wattle. Flatten the rest of the roll into a half-circle. Cut about 10 long slits to form feathers. Place on body opposite head and neck. Brush with egg white. Place peppercorn on head for eye and push a slivered almond into the head for a beak. Decorate body and tail with nuts as desired. Let rise 15-30 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees 15 minutes or until golden brown. — Rhodes International

SOUR CREAM ROLLS

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons sugar

1 envelope Fleischmann's RapidRise Yeast

1 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup sour cream

1/4 cup water

2 tablespoons butter or margarine

1 large egg

In a large bowl, combine 1 cup flour, sugar, undissolved yeast and salt. Heat sour cream, water and butter until very warm (120 to 130 degrees). Gradually add to flour mixture. Beat 2 minutes at medium speed of electric mixer, scraping bowl occasionally. Add egg and remaining flour to make a soft batter. Spoon evenly into greased 2 1/2-inch muffin pans. Cover and let rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until done. Remove from pans; cool on wire rack. Makes 12 rolls. — Fleischmann's Breadworld.com

HONEY WHOLE WHEAT ROLLS

2 envelopes Fleischmann's RapidRise Yeast

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/4 cups whole-wheat flour

1 cup rolled oats

1 teaspoon salt

1 1/4 cups water (very warm 120 to 130 degrees)

1/3 cup corn oil

1/4 cup honey

1 egg

Nonstick cooking spray

Egg wash:

1 egg plus 1 tablespoon water mixed

Combine yeast, flours, oats and salt in a large mixing bowl.

Stir honey and oil into warm water and pour into flour mixture.

Add egg and mix for 3 to 5 minutes at medium speed in an upright mixer with dough hook, scraping the sides as needed, until a soft dough forms. Dough should clean sides of mixing bowl without sticking.

Knead on clean surface with lightly oiled hands or continue mixing in stand mixer with dough hook for 3 minutes.

Spray baking sheet with cooking spray. Divide dough into 12 equal pieces, rolling each piece into a ball. Arrange on baking sheet 1 inch apart. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with additional oats if desired. Place in a warm draft free area to rise for 20 to 30 minutes or until doubled in size. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until deep golden brown on top. Makes 12 rolls. — Fleischmann's Breadworld.com

FRAGRANT CLOVERLEAF ROLLS

Let your bread machine do the mixing and kneading.

Dough:

3 cups bread flour

3 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons Fleischmann's bread machine yeast

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup milk

2/3 cup water (70 to 80 degrees)

3 tablespoons butter or margarine, cut up

1 large egg

Herb Butter:

3 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted

1 teaspoon Italian herb seasoning or fines herbes

1/4 teaspoon onion powder

Measure all dough ingredients into bread machine pan in the order suggested by manufacturer. Process on dough/manual cycle.

When cycle is complete, grease top of dough; cover tightly and refrigerate 2 to 24 hours.

Remove dough from refrigerator; punch down. Turn dough out onto floured surface. Divide into 12 equal pieces; divide each again into 3 pieces. Roll into smooth balls. Place three balls in each section of 12 greased muffin pan cups. Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 30 to 45 minutes.

In small bowl, combine herb butter ingredients; brush on rolls. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes or until done. Remove from pan; cool on wire rack. Makes 12 rolls. —Fleischmann's Breadworld.com

CARAWAY BREAD STICK TWISTS

1 10.6-ounce package refrigerated garlic bread sticks

1 teaspoon deli-style brown mustard

2 ounces finely shredded Swiss cheese

3 tablespoons finely chopped onion

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh parsley

1 to 2 teaspoons caraway seed

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Spray cookie sheet with nonstick spray. Unroll dough; separate into 2 equal sections along center perforation. Spread half the garlic spread that comes with the package evenly over 1 dough section. Spread with mustard. Top with cheese, onion, parsley and caraway seeds. Press in firmly.

Place remaining dough section over topped dough; press edges to seal. Spread remaining garlic spread over top of dough. With a sharp knife, cut filled dough in half lengthwise; cut into pieces along perforations. Twist each dough strip 2 times, stretching slightly. Place 1 inch apart on sprayed cookie sheet. Firmly press down ends. Bake at 375 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm. Makes 10 twists. — "Dough Magic!" by Pillsbury editors


E-mail: vphillips@desnews.com