Homemade (vegan) dinner rolls for a warm welcome on Meatless Monday

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Soup is a winter favorite for lots of cooks -- it's easy, it's cheap and it's filling on a cold day. And a little effort nets you a big pot that can last several days (or feed lots of people). But for hungry eaters who aren't satisfied by a bowl of soup, homemade dinner rolls are just the ticket. And you can't beat the way they warm the house, filling it with the smell of fresh-baked bread!

See also: Split-pea soup to help chase away winter for Meatless Monday

(Note: This recipe is for high-altitude baking. Sea-level bakers will want to adjust flour amounts accordingly.)

You will need:

3 cups flour (possibly more) 2 tablespoons sugar 1 teaspoon salt 1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) active dry yeast 1 cup warm water 3 tablespoons vegan butter (we used Earth Balance brand -- and brand does matter!) 1 egg's worth of egg replacement plus water (for Bob's Red Mill, 1 tablespoon powder plus 3 tablespoons water)

1. Mix the yeast with 1/4 cup of the water, which should be very warm, but not boiling. Stir until yeast is dissolved. Add one teaspoon of sugar and stir until sugar is dissolved. Set it aside; we'll let it activate while we get the egg replacement ready. Combine the egg replacer with as much water as needed to make the equivalent of one egg (this will vary depending on the brand of egg replacer used). 2.In a large bowl, whisk together 1 1/2 cups flour, the rest of the sugar (one tablespoon plus two teaspoons) and the salt until thoroughly combined. 3. Melt two tablespoons of the vegan butter and add it to the flour mixture, along with the remaining 3/4 cup of water (which should also be as hot as your tap can get it). Mix together. By now, your yeast mixture should be ready; it should have risen and look foamy, like this. Add it to the dough. Stir the dough until everything is mixed together. 4. Add the rest of the flour, a little at a time, stirring to incorporate. Excellent. Cover and set aside, allowing it to rise for thirty minutes or so. While the dough is rising, grease a pie pan. 5. Knead the dough for a little bit -- five minutes or so. If it's too sticky, add more flour. Form the dough into balls and place in the pie pan. (It's okay if they're not all that pretty -- the rising and baking should make them look nicer.) Cover and set aside for another thirty minutes to allow them to rise. See? Much better! While the rolls are rising, melt the remaining tablespoon of vegan butter in a small dish and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. 6. Brush the rolls with the vegan butter. Bake for eighteen minutes, or until the tops of the rolls are golden brown. Serve with the soup of your choice -- we tried these with split-pea soup, and they were fantastic!

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