- 2 cups warm water (105-110˚ F)
- 1 1/2 lbs. (about 4 1/2 cups) bread flour, plus more as needed
- 1 Tablespoon instant (rapid rise) yeast
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing
- 1 Tablespoon coarse salt
- 2-3 Tablespoons minced fresh rosemary
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the water, flour, yeast, olive oil, salt and rosemary. Mix together until a sticky dough forms, then switch to the dough hook and continue to knead until the dough is soft, elastic and just tacky but not sticky, about 5-7 minutes. If the dough is too sticky, add more flour 1-2 tablespoons at a time (being careful not to add too much to avoid dense rolls.)
- Lightly grease a large bowl with olive oil. Form the dough into a ball, place in the bowl, turning once to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until nearly doubled in bulk, about 60-90 minutes.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough evenly into 16 portions, using a kitchen scale to make sure the rolls are evenly sized. Form each portion of dough into a smooth round ball. Transfer the shaped rolls to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat, spacing them at least 2 inches apart. Let the rolls rise once more until puffed, about 30 minutes.
- Heat the oven to 450˚ F. If desired, sprinkle the tops of the rolls with a small amount of coarse sea salt such as Maldon. Bake the rolls, rotating the pan once halfway through baking, until the tops are golden brown, about 20 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.
If you prefer, these could be baked as pull apart rolls similar to the honey yeast rolls. You may need to add a few minutes to the baking time to ensure that the rolls in the middle get baked through.
Though I haven’t tried it myself yet, I suspect you could use the make-ahead technique I tried with the honey yeast rolls and it should work just as well here.