Here Comes Peter Cottontail

This past Sunday we all spent the afternoon in the kitchen busy with several different recipes. I wasn’t planning to make dinner rolls, but after I saw the “Bunny Backsides” on Frieda Loves Bread, I knew we had to give them a shot. The kids were definitely game, and having quite the giggles about getting to make (and then eat) “bunny butts.” Now I’m admittedly not a great bread maker. I typically let my bread machine do the work for me, but for these cute little spring treats, I thought I would again try my mom’s dinner roll recipe (to-date I have yet to pull this recipe off correctly).

We began by scalding the milk and then stirring in sugar, salt and shortening. We then set this aside to cool to lukewarm. In the meantime, we sprinkled the yeast into hot water to dissolve and then slightly beat two eggs with a fork. Next we combined the milk, the yeast and the eggs into a large mixing bowl and began to stir in the flour a few cups at a time.  

The remaining flour was added until the dough was soft and then we turned it out and kneaded it for 8 minutes. Once springy, the dough was placed in a greased bowl, lightly topped with shortening and covered in a warm place to rise.

After the dough is doubled it’s time to punch it down. This was one of my favorite parts of making rolls with my mom as a kid and now I think it  might be one of Mr. N’s too.

Next we turned the dough onto a floured surface, divided it in half and rolled it out to a 1/4″ thickness. For the Peter Cottontails, Mr. N and I rolled little balls for the tails and then long, thin rolls to form the bodies. (At this point I was encouraged, the dough tasted fantastic – just like mom’s!)

This is what our Peter Cottontails looked like before baking.

We also prepared a batch of regular rolls which we cut into circles. We then covered half of each circle with shortening and folded them in half.

Both sets of rolls were covered until they doubled in size again and were then baked in the oven at 400F for 15-20 minutes. The rolls are best served warm and topped with butter.

While our dinner rolls tasted right, they didn’t have the same consistency or texture as my mom’s. One of these days I’ll get it right. This recipe was passed down from my grandma to my mom, so I’m not giving up! Nevertheless, the kids loved their “bunny butts,” and their laughter and giggles every time they ate one made this effort worthwhile. Happy Earth Day and Happy Easter!

Print this recipe: Basic Dinner Rolls

11 thoughts on “Here Comes Peter Cottontail

  1. Rufus' Food and Spirit Guide says:

    Great, I read that name and started giggling. My humor is no more advanced than your children’s, who are comic geniuses no doubt. I bet they are as good as your moms. I think it’s a childhood thing. There are so many memories wrapped up in those bunny backsides, goodness, I’m trying here, that they taste even better in your memory. Just think, one day your children will say the same thing. These aren’t as good as moms.


  2. Kay aka Babygirl says:

    You are already close to getting the recipe right. I know you will get it. I struggle with making my moms buttermilk homemade biscuits because she adds an extra ingredient but won’t tell me what it is lol. But Mr. N looks like he is about to go He-Man on that dough LOL. And even with ‘around the house clothes’, there mom still is a gem. Wonderful post.


    • ChefMom says:

      Ha! You mean my Sunday best? LOL! Thanks for the encouragement – I’m going to keep at this recipe. And maybe one of these days your mom will give you the secret ingredient. 😉 Have a great weekend!


Thank you for commenting!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s