This recipe for butter horns was hand written by my wonderful Grandma, Janice Nordstrom. My Dad tells me that she and her Mother were both famous for making butter horns. As a kid, I remember eating them at holidays and at the occasional casual family dinner, but it never occurred to me to ask her about them. I probably assumed they were store bought or baked from a tube. Also, being a kid, you never think of asking your Grandma exactly what is homemade on the table and what is store bought. With Thanksgiving right around the corner, I figured now would be a good time to give this recipe a try!
The only modification I made to this recipe right from the beginning is using butter instead of shortening. A lot of old recipes from my Grandmas use shortening, Oleo specifically. Which I almost always substitute with butter. Here are the quantities of ingredients that I used:
2 1/4 tsp yeast w/ 1 T sugar
1/4 cup warm water, to dissolve yeast + sugar
1 cup milk, warm
4 oz butter, melted
3 eggs, beaten slightly
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
5 cups flour
While I melted the butter and warmed the milk, I allowed the yeast + sugar mixture sit in the warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer. I then mixed the milk, butter, remaining sugar and salt, and eggs. All of which goes into the bowl with with yeast mixture. Mix with a dough hook and add flour 1 cup at a time until it is all incorporated, and mix until dough comes together and flour is absorbed. The dough will be very wet, but do not add more flour! Cover, leave in a warm place in the kitchen, and let it rise for 3 hours.
After dough rises, punch the dough down with flour dusted hands, lightly knead, and divide into four equal pieces. Keep surface dusted with flour as needed, only add more flour if dough starts to stick to your hands or to the table.
Form each portion of dough into a round ball, and roll out evenly with a rolling pin. Dough should be about 1/4 inch thick. Make sure dough is not sticking to the table as you roll.
Next, cut rolled out dough into 12 equal pieces. First cut in half, then in quarters, then cut each quarter in thirds. Use the center of the circle as a guide for making equal sections. To roll each piece, start with the wider side and roll tightly towards the point.
Place on a sheet tray with parchment paper about 1-2 inches apart from each other. Make sure the point is facing down. Cover sheet tray with plastic, and rest for 1- 1/2 hours until dough is about doubled in size.
1 1/2 hours later, we have beautiful butter horns ready for the oven! The recipe calls for 10--15 minutes at 400 degrees. 14 minutes later...
Perfectly, imperfect butter horns! Make sure to rotate the pan halfway through the cook time to ensure even browning. This recipe yields 48 butter horns, and I decided to freeze half of them. Instead of letting them rise after rolling and forming, you can freeze them in a bag or container and have fresh baked butter horns at another time with little to no effort. Just pull them out of the freezer and let them thaw until soft at room temperature. My favorite way to enjoy these would be warm with some butter and a bit of coarse salt. Enjoy!!