In a large glass measuring cup (see note), heat milk, 1/2 cup (1 stick) of the butter, and the honey in the microwave until melted and just starting to boil about 3 minutes. Set aside to cool.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 8 cups of the flour, salt, and yeast.
Add the cooled milk mixture, water (see note), and the egg to the dry ingredients.
Stir well, until almost totally combined.
Add the last cup or two of flour (see note) - the dough should be slightly sticky and difficult to stir (reference video).
In the same bowl, proof the dough until doubled, about an hour.
After the dough has doubled in size, turn it out onto a well-floured surface and divide it into 4 equal pieces. Additionally, divide the remaining stick of butter into 4 equal pieces.
To cut the rolls, I roll each quarter of dough into a rectangle that is about 12 inches by 8 inches by 1/3 inch thick.
Spread 2 tablespoons of butter on half of this rectangle and then fold the rectangle over on itself cross-wise so it measures 6x 8 inches (reference video).
Cut the folded piece in half lengthwise and then cut each length into 5 pieces, or rolls.
Repeat with remaining dough quarters.
Place formed rolls onto baking sheets, 20 fit snugly on each cookie sheet (reference video).
Proof until doubled again, about 45-60 minutes.
Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes or until golden brown on the top.
Brush additional butter on the top of the rolls, if desired.
If you want to bake these in advance (like for a holiday) and then heat them up the day you need them, bake them a few minutes shy of being done and then finish them off the day you want to serve them.
Heating the milk, butter, and honey until just boiling is called scalding. This can be done in a pan on the stovetop but is also easily done in a large (4-cup) glass measuring cup in the microwave if you are lazy like me and hate washing pans. I will often add the 2 cups of water (room temperature) to the milk mixture to help it cool off more quickly. Because in addition to being lazy, I am also impatient. :) The exact amount of flour you will need for this recipe (or any baking recipe) can vary by as much as a cup. This is due to altitude, humidity, and weather. I live in an arid high-desert mountain climate, so often my readers need to add additional flour if they live at a lower elevation with more humidity. Reference the video for how sticky the dough should be. I use instant yeast which is more potent than active dry yeast and doesn’t need to be bloomed in water like active dry yeast does. If you’re using active dry, don’t worry, just put it in with your water for a few minutes instead of straight into the flour. If you forget which kind of yeast you have, it really won’t make too big of a difference in this recipe.