Radiating Sunshine: The Best Christmas Rolls

Thursday, December 19, 2013

The Best Christmas Rolls

#71 on my 101 in 1001 list was to 'Learn a New Recipe from My Grandma' and boy is that what I did this past Wednesday. To start this post, I wanted to let you all know how extraordinary my Grandma is.  So, many of my childhood memories have her in them and I am so blessed that I have the opportunity to learn so much from her, including this delicious Potato Rolls recipe that we made together and that I wanted to share with all of you. Maybe, you'll make them this holiday season for your family to enjoy. 

Anyways, Grandma Bee got this one of a kind recipe from an old friend, probably 15 years ago at least. The potato rolls have been made appearances at all of our holiday dinners since I can remember, so it was definitely a recipe I wanted to learn. When I was younger, I loved them so much my Grandma made some for my birthday -- thats true dedication to roll eating right there. Anyways, if you were considering buying your rolls for your holiday feast… I would strongly recommend you reconsider that plan and maybe take an alternative route. 

Check out this cute recipe card that was typed on the typewriter and has clearly been put to use!
Below is the potato roll recipe. Now, since this recipe has been passed down from a number of different people and my Grandma has made this thousands of times... I inserted asterisks where my Grandma made special notes about what to do, the notes are also typed below. 

** cold water: My Grandma recommends that after you boiled the potatoes, save a cup of the water and put it in the fridge to keep it cold. The potato water really adds extra flavoring.
** yeast: make sure that the yeast is fully dissolved. This is crucial otherwise your dough may not rise and you will not want to start from scratch! Warm water activates the yeast. 
** kneading the dough: set the egg time and knead the whole time. 
** dough rising: Make sure you place the bowl in a warm spot...we put ours next to the fire place. And you will know the dough is ready to be rolled when it had risen twice its original size. 
** biscuit cutter: if you don't have one, a cookie cutter will do. Just make sure it comes out in a circle. Also, don't over roll the dough. You want the dough to be light and fluffy, not completely flattened.
** parker roll: fancy way of saying take the top half and laying it on top of the other half. Place the bottom half on the baking sheet. The buttered side of the dough should be on the outside of the roll. 

I have also taken some pictures of the process, if you needed some reference points! I am know roll master, but hopefully the directions and notes will come in handy.

one- before my grandma starts baking she lays out all of her ingredients and measures them all out properly too. Definitely saves time and helps her stay organized in the kitchen
two- this is what the potato, crisco, potato water, scalded milk, sugar and salt mixture looked like after being mixed. There are a few potato chunks and that is fine.
three- after the flour has been added
four- the dough has fully risen!
five- rolling out the dough on my Grandma's flour mat and cutting out our rolls
six- the finished product! We taste tested after they were out of the oven and they were so good!

If you decide to make them a week or so before your holiday party or dinner then put them in the freezer. Make sure they are in a sealed container and pull them out 2 days before so that they can thaw. Heat the oven to about 300 and put them in just to warm them up. Remember, they are already baked!

And while you wait for your dough to rise… grab a friend or your Grandma and play a few rounds of cards… Our game of choice: rummy! But, you can play whatever you'd like! Thanks Grandma for teaching me how to make this holiday favorite.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you try out this wonderful roll recipe! 


  1. This is just amazing!!! What a wonderful way to check off one of your 101! I love that photo of you and Grandma, too!

    1. Thanks, Meg! Did you get my email with the French Toast recipe?

      - Alex @ Radiating Sunshine

  2. This sounds so yummy! Stopping by from NE bloggers!

    Amanda Rose

    1. Thanks Amanda! I would definitely recommend them, they are delicious!!

      - Alex @ Radiating Sunshine


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