With a top coat of melted butter and a sprinkling of sea salt, these golden brown Parker House rolls are nothing short of trophy-worthy. Created for the Parker House Hotel in Boston soon after it opened in 1855, these classic yeast rolls are sometimes called pocketbook rolls because of their shape, which resembles a purse: Just as ideal for sandwiching a slice of Thanksgiving turkey or holiday ham as they are slathered with honey or a slick of jam for breakfast.
If you are new to baking bread, dinner rolls are a good place to start, but make sure to plan ahead so there’s time to let the dough rise before you shape it and for the shaped buns to chill before baking.
We prefer to knead this dough by hand, but feel free to whip them up in a stand mixer with a dough hook if you’d rather. And while some bread recipes recommend letting the dough rise in a warm place, this Parker House rolls recipe calls for rising at room temperature. Cooler temps will encourage the dough to rise more slowly, giving it time to develop flavor. You could even chill the dough overnight, then shape the rolls the next day.