Blue Ribbon Recipes From the Minnesota State Fair

by | Mar 2024

Posie Dinner Rolls

Posies. Photos: Chris Emeott

Pick a posie or a loaf.

Minnesota State Fair baking veterans share two award-winning recipes.

Jim Lind recommends celebrating springtime by baking flower-shaped dinner rolls. This recipe has resulted in seven total ribbons (three blue ribbons). “Unlike some more elaborate dinner roll shapes (ie: knots or crescents), these are handled minimally, which results in a more tender roll,” he says.

Posies – contributed by Jim Lind of Minnetonka
  • 4 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 tsp. instant yeast
  • 1 ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • ¼ cup butter, unsalted
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup honey

Combine 1½ cups of the flour, yeast and salt in a large mixing bowl. In a saucepan, warm milk and butter to 120-130 degrees F. Gradually, beat the liquid into the dry ingredients, beating for several minutes. Beat in eggs and honey, along with a bit more flour.

Using the dough hook on a KitchenAid mixer, work the dough, adding more flour as required until you have a soft dough. You may not need all of the flour. Knead for about eight minutes. Let rise for one hour in an oiled bowl in a warm place. Oiled plastic wrap placed directly against the dough prevents drying.

Prepare two baking sheets, lined with parchment paper. After one hour, punch down and cut dough in 1.8 oz. pieces, 20 pieces total. If you don’t have a scale, divide into 20 equal pieces. Form pieces into tight round balls, press down with your palm to flatten into disks. Using a clean scissors, make six cuts into each disk, equal distance around and ½-inch deep.

Place dough on baking sheets, and cover with lightly oiled plastic wrap. Let dough rise until doubled. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Brush whole milk onto the rolls just before baking for a nice sheen. It works better to bake one pan at a time. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, until golden brown. Move to cooling rack.

Rolls can be baked the day before and left on the counter wrapped in plastic, or they can be double bagged and frozen for weeks. If frozen, give them a couple hours at room temperature to thaw before dinner. Prior to serving, warm them in the oven at 350 degrees F for six minutes.

White Honey Bread – contributed by Kim Narveson of Minnetonka

Regardless of the time of year, White Honey Bread can be a staple at any meal. “I feel as though this is a simple recipe that works all the time,” Narveson says.

White Honey Bread

White Honey Bread

  • 1 package dry yeast
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ½ cup warm water
  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 cup warm milk
  • 3 eggs
  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup honey

In a mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, butter, honey, ginger, 2 eggs and 3 c. flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.

Knead for 6-8 minutes, until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl, and cover and let rise until doubled, about one hour.

Punch down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Divide into three equal balls. Divide each ball into three equal smaller balls. Roll into 12-inch ropes, and braid, tucking the ends under.

Place into 7.5 x 4-inch pan. Cover; let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes. Beat remaining egg, and brush over loaves. Bake at 350 degrees F for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown.

Remove from pans to a wire rack to cool.


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