When my husband's grandparents were alive, every time we went up there to visit them, they'd always want to eat at Olive Garden. Every. Single. Time. I mean, I like mediocre, over-priced Italian food as much as the next guy, but come on! One of the perks of Olive Grden is their breadsticks. I used to get those bad boys and a side of alfredo sauce for dipping. I would drench the bread sticks in the alfredo and be in seventh heaven (and a caloric overload.) I loved those bread sticks when they came out warm. Well, my friend, this recipe blows their bread sticks out of the water. You're dead to me, Olive Garden hot dog bun breadsticks! These were the softest bread sticks I've ever made. They blew my mind, and I may have eaten three of them and I may have wanted to eat three more. *Hangs head in shame.* They come together quickly and turn out fantastic. You've got to try them!
World's Best Breadsticks
yield: 24 breadsticks
1 c warm water
1 T yeast
2 T softened butter
3 1/4 c white flour
1/4 c sugar
1 t salt
6 T butter
1/4 - 1/2 t garlic salt
Combine all bread ingredients in a bread machine on the dough setting. (If you don't have a bread maker, combine them into a stand mixer and use a hook attachment.) Set the bread machine to start and walk away. If you're using the hook attachment, set it on low and mix it for 5 minutes. The dough will be soft and a bit sticky. Turn it out onto a floured surface and knead it a few times. Place it in a greased bowl, cover with a kitchen towel. When I need bread to rise, I boil some water in a Pyrex container, put it in the microwave, and put the bread in there. The heat from the hot water makes perfect conditions for rising.
Once it's doubled in size, turn it out onto a floured surface. Roll it in a 12x10 inch rectangle. Cut it in half lengthwise. Then cut up and down 12 times to make 24 breadsticks.
Place them on a greased cookie sheet. Let them rise for 30 minutes or until slightly puffy.
Bake at 350 for 14-18 minutes or until they are golden brown on top.
Make the garlic butter by melting the butter in a pie plate. Add the garlic salt. Roll each bread stick in the butter. If you don't want to roll the whole thing in the butter because you're watching calories, you can just brush the tops with it.
I sprinkled mine with Parmesan cheese- just because cheese makes everything better.