Parker House Rolls are one of New England’s many trademark culinary offerings, and one that is perfect for this time of year, when the weather turns cool and we start thinking about comfort food and holiday dinners. Whether you are serving roasted turkey, hearty soup, or spaghetti with marinara, there should always be an accompanying basket of warm, buttery rolls to bite into and help clean your plate.
Parker House Rolls are a homerun. A crisp, buttery exterior makes way for a soft, tender crumb that steams when broken apart. In addition to their dinner table pedigree, they are equally delicious slathered with butter and jam at the breakfast table. This was how I enjoyed them on a recent morning.
The rolls are named after the Boston hotel where they originated during the 1870s. Legend has it that a disgruntled hotel baker threw a batch of unfinished rolls into the oven after an altercation with a hotel guest. When the rolls emerged from the oven, they had a distinct folded “pocketbook” shape that made them light and puffy on the inside, while staying crisp and buttery on the outside.
The oldest printed Parker House Rolls recipe on file is from an April 1874 issue of the New Hampshire Sentinel, and they have been a favorite in homes and restaurants ever since.
Make a large batch this fall for a family dinner, or freeze the rolls for a warm, toasted, buttery addition to any meal, at any time.
GET THE RECIPE:
Parker House Rolls Recipe
This post was first published in 2011 and has been updated.