Week 31: Hoagie Rolls

Rumour has it that hoagie rolls got their name from the “hoggie” sandwiches made by Italian immigrants who worked at the Hog Island shipyard in Philedephia during WWI. Call them what you will, (“subs” in North Jersey, “hoagies” in South Jersey, “heroes” in NYC, and “grinders” if you’re from New England), but the style of the roll remains the same: dense and sturdy with a hard crust.

STEP 1: Proof yeast

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1-1/4 tsp yeast
  1. Warm milk to about 105 degrees, but not hotter than 110.
  2. Add yeast and mix

STEP 2: Hydrate flour

  • 400 g bread flour (AP is okay)
  • 10 g sugar
  • 20 g olive oil
  • 8 g salt
  1. Mix the flour, sugar, oil and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer.
  2. Add the milk/yeast mixture
  3. Cover and let rest for 15 minutes.

STEP 3: Knead and first rise

  1. Place bowl in mixer and with the dough hook attachment, knead on #4 for 3 minutes, then #2 for 5
  2. Dough should come away from the sides, and be able to stretch with out breaking
  3. Cover and let rise until doubled in size. This could take about an hour, but it depends on the temperature of the room, so check on it often!

STEP 4: Shape rolls

  1. Gently punch dough down, then turn out onto your countertop. You can put a little oil on the countertop, rubbed in well, to keep it from sticking, but you shouldn’t have to. Same goes for dusting with flour. If you really want to use flour, don’t use too much!
  2. Separate dough into 4 even pieces, weighing about 175 grams each.
  3. Flatten each one into a square, then roll up and press seam together to seal.
  4. Roll each one to a length of about 10″

STEP 5: Second rise

  1. Place rolls on a baking sheet, covered, and let proof about 30 – 45 minutes, until doubled in size. I place glasses in the corner, than cover the whole thing with a clear kitchen trash bag.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees, so it’s ready by the time they rise

STEP 6: Score, top and bake

  • 1 egg white beaten with a Tbsp of water and a pinch of salt
  • Sesame seeds
  1. When oven has reached 400, pour boiling water in a iron skillet, or baking pan with high sides and place on the bottom rack. Careful – it’s easy for the water to slosh out a bit!
  2. Brush the tops of the rollswith egg white, score, then sprinkle with sesame seeds
  3. Place in oven, shut the door, and turn the heat down to 375 degrees.
  4. Bake for 10 minutes, rotate, and then bake for 10 minutes longer, until golden. Internal temperature should be between 190 and 200.
  5. Cool on wire rack.


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