Papos Secos | Portuguese Bread Rolls

Try out this traditional Portuguese bread roll. This bread roll is often served alongside dinner and also used as sandwich bread.


Papos Secos | Portuguese Bread Rolls

Papos Secos | Portuguese Bread Rolls

Try out this traditional Portuguese bread roll. This bread roll is often served alongside dinner and also used as sandwich bread.
4.60 from 5 votes
Prep Time 4 hours
Cook Time 20 minutes
Course Bread
Cuisine Portuguese
Servings 14


  • 1000 g flour 8⅓ cups
  • 700 g water 3 cups
  • 45 g butter 3 tbsp
  • 20 g salt 3½ tsp
  • 8 g sugar 2 tsp
  • 10 g active dry yeast 1 packet


  • Measure out all the ingredients in individual dishes.
  • Scoop out about ½ cup of water from the pre-measured amount. Warm the removed water to between 105-115°F. To the warm water mix in the sugar and yeast, stir and let sit for 10 minutes.
    Pasted Graphic 5
  • Into a stand mixer, or large bowl, add in the flour and water-yeast mixture. Warm the remaining water to about 110°F and add that to the mixing bowl. Add in the salt. Mix until the dough comes together. Add in the butter. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes, in the mixer or by hand. The dough will be sticky. Cover the bowl with a damp towel and place in the oven. Turn on your oven to the lowest possible temperature for 1 minute then turn off. This will warm the oven and provide a perfect temperature for the dough to rise. Around 80-90°F is the ideal temperature.
    If you have a dual probe barbecue thermometer available, place one probe in the oven and one into the dough. Monitor the temperature and adjust the temperature of your oven as needed.
    Let the dough rise for 1-2 hours, or until it has doubled in size.
  • Once the dough has doubled in size, remove the dough from the bowl and place it on a floured work surface. Knead the dough, pulling it and stretching it over itself to promote gluten development. Continue for about 5 minutes. Place the dough back into the bowl, in the oven for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
    Pasted Graphic 6
  • Remove the dough from the oven. To check if the dough is done proofing, stick two floured fingers into the dough up to your knuckle. If the dough does not spring back, and the indentations remain, the dough is ready to move on to the next stage.
  • On a floured work surface section your dough into about 4.5oz pieces, or the size of your preference. Roll each piece into a round ball. Cover the balls with a towel and let rest for 10 minutes.
    Pasted Graphic 7
  • Form each ball into a disc shape. Using the side of your hand, or the handle of a wooden spoon, form and indention down the center of each disc. Place the discs on a lightly oiled baking pan. Brush each disc with milk and dust with a small amount of flour.
    (NOTE: If you like the the crust of your papos secos to have a thicker/drier/crumbly/crust, don't brush with milk, just dust with a liberally with lot of flour. Then let it proof for an additional 15 minutes. [the flour absorbs moisture from the crust] To see which type of crust do you like best, I suggest brushing half of the rolls with milk and liberally coating the other half of the rolls with flour- to see what you prefer).
  • Preheat the oven to 500°F. Place an empty rimmed baking sheet onto the bottom rack of the oven. Place your papos secos into the oven in the middle rack. Add 1 cup of water to the rimmed baking sheet on the bottom rack to create steam in the oven. This will help the bread develop a crisp crust. Cook for 15-20 minutes until the bread is golden brown.
    JPEG Papos secos Portuguese 6



If you like a  drier crusty/powdery/chewy crust. Roll the dough on all sides with some flour before the final proofing. This will encourage a dry crust to form, resulting in a more rustic appearance with a chewier crust. I can try both styles :The first half of the rolls coat heavily in flour before the final proofing. (The other half of the rolls brush with milk and lightly flour just before baking.   Decide what style you I prefer.
digital instant read thermometer
bread making
Keyword bread rolls, papos secos, Portuguese bread, Portuguese bread rolls
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Hello, I'm Michael!

I aspire to share recipes that you and your family can enjoy while also learning about cooking fundamentals along the way. I attended the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, CA and now enjoy cooking as a hobby.

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