Cloverleaf Yeast Rolls!

This is a really easy little yeast roll you make in a muffin tin.  The rolls take on an interesting shape and are just delicious!   It's so easy, even those who don't make homemade breads can do this one!  When making yeast breads, there are a just a few key things to know about that can make it or break it.  I will let you know what those are as I give you this recipe! 

Here is what you will need:

3  1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 pkg. (1/4 oz.)  dry quick acting yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup warm milk
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 tsp. salt
1 egg, slightly beaten
vegetable oil
1/4 cup half and half cream

Place the flour in a large mixing bowl.

In a separate small bowl, dissolve the yeast in the warm water.  The water should be warm, not hot.  If it's too hot it will kill your yeast! It should feel just warm to the touch.  This is one of the keys to yeast breads and a mistake so many make.

Mix the warm milk, sugar, butter, salt and egg.   Stir this wet mixture into the flour and mix just until combined.
Now add the yeast mixture to the flour and mix again until it is all well combined.  Make sure to add the yeast mixture after the other wet mixture has been added and mixed, because the salt and yeast to do not need to make direct contact.  Salt added right with the yeast can also kill the yeast and your rolls will not rise!  This is tip #2!

Put about 1 Tbs. of oil over the roll dough and turn it over in the bowl to just cover it.  Cover loosely with clean kitchen towel and place in  warm place in your kitchen to rise for about 2 hours or until it doubles.

Punch the dough down and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface.  Shape into a ball and with a knife cut it into 4 pieces.  Cut those 4 pieces into 3 pieces.    The cut each of the 3 pieces into 3 more pieces and roll each one in a ball.   This assures you get uniform size rolls.

Brush a 12 cups muffin tin with the oil.  Be sure  to brush around the tops and of each tin, because the will rise over and bake onto the edge and top of each tin.

Place three of the dough balls in each tin to make a shape like a cloverleaf.

Brush each roll top with a little half and half cream. 

Place in a warm spot in the kitchen allow to rise for 1-2 hours or until they have doubled in size again.   The amount of time they take to rise depends on how warm the area you place them in is.  If I have the oven on, I try to put the pan on the counter by the oven for faster results.

Place in a preheated 400 degree oven and bake for  12-18 minutes or until just brown on top.

Serve immediately with butter!

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