These rolls are a part of my childhood. From McCarthy's, a fantastic restaurant that was in business for decades in Northern NY. It's from the Cookbook "McCarthy's Restaurant Recipes" published by the Friends of the Canton Free Library, gifted to me by a friend (Thank you!). A photo of the original recipe (that makes 4-6 dozen rolls!!) is posted below, but I reduced the recipe and made it more straightforward for the baker who isn't feeding the neighborhood. (Although I can promise you, the neighbors don't complain when fresh bread is dropped off. )
Combine yeast/water mixture with sugar. Mix. Add instant potato/water mixture. Mix. Add veg. oil, egg, salt. Mix. Add the flour one cup at a time, kneading it for 5-8 minutes. (Tip: I use the hook on my kitchen aid mixer to mix and knead. I know that I have enough flour and have kneaded long enough when I can lift the hook and all the dough sticks to the hook. Don't be afraid to add more flour, flour needs change with changing humidity.).
Place dough in a large bowl sprayed with cooking spray. Put dough in bowl and then turn over (so the top is covered with cooking spray). Dampen cheese cloth and put over bowl. (Or use plastic wrap). Let rise in warm place for one hour. Tap bowl on counter to punch down.
Flour your hands and lightly flour the dough. Pinch pieces of the dough off, tucking the loose ends under to make rolls. Place on a greased sheet pan.
Let rise for another 30 minutes.
Bake in a 375 degree oven for 20-30 minutes (varies depending on the size of your rolls) until golden brown. Brush with butter while still warm if so desired (which I desire).
Yield 1 dozen- 1.5 dozen