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Pumpkin Dinner Rolls Recipe
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Pumpkin Dinner Rolls

1/4-ounce fresh package (about 2 1/2 teaspoons) active dry yeast (check expiration date)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup fresh milk, heated to lukewarm
7 to 8 cups all-purpose flour
1 16-ounce can pumpkin puree or 2 cups fresh homemade pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon plain salt or iodized salt
1-1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted, fresh cold butter, cut into small bits
1 large fresh whole egg, beaten lightly

In a small bowl, proof (test) the yeast with 1 teaspoon of the sugar in the milk for 5 minutes, or until the mixture is foamy. If it does not foam or bubble, STOP and obtain some fresh yeast, before you start this recipe. In a large mixing bowl combine 7 cups of the flour, nutmeg, salt, and remaining sugar. Mix well. Blend in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the whole egg, the pumpkin puree, and the foamy yeast mixture. Stir the dough until it is mixed together, very well.

Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it, incorporating as much of the remaining 1 cup flour as necessary to prevent the dough from sticking. Knead the dough for 15 minutes, or until it is smooth and elastic. Form the dough into a ball, transfer it to a well-buttered large bowl, and turn it to coat it with the butter. Let the dough rise, covered with plastic wrap, in a warm place for 1 hour, or until it is double in size. Turn the dough out onto a work surface, divide it into 24 pieces, and form each piece into a ball. Fit the balls into two (2) buttered 10-inch springform pans and let them rise, covered with a kitchen towel, in a warm place for 45 minutes, or until they are almost double in size.

Preparation HINT: An egg wash made by beating 1 large egg yolk with 1 tablespoon water.

Brush the rolls with the egg wash and bake them in the middle of a preheated 350F. oven for 40 to 50 minutes, or until they are golden brown. Let the rolls cool slightly in the pan, remove the side of the pan, and serve these rolls warm.

These rolls are crusty on the outside and warm and soft on the inside, and it's a simple, easy Halloween recipe to make. They go well with a Halloween dinner party. Great with squash soup or for making Halloween or Thanksgiving sandwiches.

Preparation and Baking HINT: If your home or apartment is cool, and to cut down on rising time, let the dough rise in your oven, preheated to 200F. and then turned off. Bake the rolls for about 35 minutes instead of the 45 to 50 minutes as noted in the recipe.

Makes 24 rolls

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