Featherbed Rolls II - 1939 New England Yankee CB

“Take 2... Slight variation from Farmer's Almanac Featherbed Rolls. This one is egg-less. There are lots of "feather" bread or roll recipes, or those that use leftover mashed potatoes. This is an oldie, goody, and keeper! The key ingredient is not just the potato, but the potato WATER that the potato was boiled in. The starches help to create a light, fluffy bread or roll. This recipe is from New England Yankee Cook Book. Side note: breads made without much sugar will not brown. You will have a white roll, which, at one time, was a desirable trait (white, light & tender).”
3hrs 20mins
16-20 rolls

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 1 large potato, peeled, cubed, cooked and mashed
  • 34 cup potato water
  • 12 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 12 tablespoons butter
  • 4 tablespoons milk
  • 1 (1 tablespoon) package active dry yeast
  • 3 12 cups flour (approximate)


  1. Peel, cook and mash potatoes, save 3/4 cups potato water
  2. Add butter, salt, and 1 tablespoon sugar to mashed potatoes.
  3. Add 1/2 C potato water to mashed potatoes.
  4. Scald milk, cool to lukewarm and add to mashed potato mixture.
  5. Dissolve yeast in 1/4 C warm potato water and 1 tablespoon sugar.
  6. Add to mashed potato mixture and stir in 2 cups flour. Beat well
  7. Add enough remaining flour to make dough just firm enough to knead
  8. Knead until smooth, approximately 8 - 10 minutes.
  9. Place in a large bowl, brush top with melted butter or oil.
  10. Cover and let rise until double in bulk (original recipe states “at least 5 hours”) Author’s experience = about 1 - 1.5 hours.
  11. Place on floured board; pat into pieces ½ inch thick; pinch off small pieces and shape into 16 - 20 rolls (or can be rolled & cut).
  12. Place on greased pan; let rise until more than double in bulk (35 - 45 min).
  13. Bake in 400 degree oven for 20 minutes, or until done.
  14. Rolls will be white or barely browned.

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