British Bites: Buttery Rowies

British Bites

Classic British dishes updated for the modern American cook.

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Buttery Rowies


[Photograph: Sydney Oland]

About the author: Sydney Oland lives in Somerville, Mass. Find more information at (or read

Buttery rowies are native to Aberdeen, and are typically made with lard and served with butter and jam. This is a version of the crisp, layered rolls that uses salted butter to achieve the fatty layers and adds a tablespoon of brown sugar to the last layer of butter. Adding a thin layer of brown sugar gives the rolls a bit of sweetness that complements the salty butter perfectly.

This roll may seem like a bit of an undertaking, what with its folds and layers, but once you're actually in the middle of making them, they are pretty simple. The important parts are remembering to pinch the edges in between the folds, and making sure that the dough gets a full 30 minute rest before you bake them. Keep in mind, even if you do an incredible job of pinching, these rolls will leak out butter and fill the pan with a browned butter (remember to use a lined baking sheet!). To me, that toasted butter coating is part of what makes these rolls such a treat.

A very big thank you to one of the British Bites readers (Bigbananafeet) for suggesting this recipe, and even sending me the recipe for a version that she has made at home. I'm always open to suggestions from readers—so please keep them coming.

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