Cooking From Memory ~ A Recipe Journal

Buttermilk Cluster Rolls


There was something about the simplicity of this recipe, not to mention the photograph that got me up and out of bed at 6:00 AM on this Saturday morning, into the car and down to the grocery store by 6:30 and back home and “aproned” by 7.  What a morning! Everything worked perfectly. Well, nearly perfectly. I forgot the salt and noticed that right away when I bit into the first little pillow of happiness. So don’t forget the salt when you do this.  These soft, sesame seeded dinner rolls are based on a popular recipe on the baking website

So give this a shot. I hope your kitchen smells as good as mine does.

Ingredients ~

  • ¼ oz. active dry yeast (I use one 5/16 ounce package od Hodgson Mill Active Dry Yeast)
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 1 ¾ cups buttermilk
  • 1 Tablespoon honey
  • 5 cups flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Unsalted butter, for greasing
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tablespoons sesame seeds

 Method ~

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine yeast, sugar, and ¼ cup water heated to 115°; let sit until foamy, about 10 minutes.


Whisk in buttermilk and honey; add flour and salt. Mix on medium-low speed until dough forms a ball and pulls away from the side of the bowl, 6–8 minutes  (sprinkle in a little water if dough seems dry).

Cover bowl with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place to let dough rise until doubled in size, about 2 hours. 

Heat oven to 400˚. Grease a 9″ round springform pan with butter. Uncover dough; divide into 12 portions.

Roll each dough piece into a ball; transfer ball to pan; repeat with remaining dough.

Cover pan with plastic wrap and set aside to let dough rise until doubled in size, about 1 hour. In a small bowl, whisk together egg and 1 tsp. water. Uncover dough and brush egg mixture over the top; sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake until golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of dough registers 190°, about 35 minutes.

Transfer to a wire rack and let cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.

This article was first published in Saveur in Issue #126

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