These rolls are best served warm but can be made one day ahead and stored in an airtight container at room temperature.

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Ingredients

Directions

  • Combine milk with butter and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring until butter melts. Gradually whisk in cornmeal. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring frequently, until thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool completely.

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  • In a large bowl, whisk yeast and sugar into 1/3 cup warm water (110 degrees). Let stand until foamy, then stir in cornmeal mixture. Lightly beat 2 eggs; stir into yeast-and-cornmeal mixture. Stir in 3 1/2 cups flour until dough is tacky but not sticky. (If dough is sticky, stir in more flour.) Transfer to a work surface dusted with flour. Knead with floured hands, dusting more flour onto hands and surface as needed, until dough is elastic and springs back when pressed with a finger, about 5 minutes.

  • Transfer dough to a large bowl brushed with butter. Cover and let rise in a warm spot until doubled in volume, about 1 hour. The dough can be made up to this point and left torise up to 12 hours in the refrigerator; remove from refrigerator 1 hour before proceeding.

  • Punch down dough. Form into a ball and place on a clean, undusted work surface. Quarter dough, then divide each quarter into 4 pieces. Form each piece into a ball and space evenly on two rimmed baking sheets that are generously dusted with cornmeal (8 per sheet). Loosely cover and let rise until doubled in volume, about 45 minutes.

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees with racks in upper and lower thirds. Beat remaining egg. Brush tops of rolls with egg, then slash a 1/4-inch-deep X in tops. Lightly dust with cornmeal and sprinkle with flaky salt.

  • Bake, rotating sheets halfway through, until rolls are puffed, golden, and hollow-sounding when tapped on bottoms, 18 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a basket lined with a clean towel and cover to keep warm until ready to serve.

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