Make the dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together warm milk, active dry yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar. Let mixture sit for 5 minutes (it should foam up a bit). Add remaining tablespoon of sugar, egg, butter and 1 cup flour. Attach the dough hook to the mixer and mix ingredients on low speed until combined, about 1 minute.
Knead the dough: Add remaining 2 cups flour and knead the dough on medium speed until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, about 5 minutes. You want a soft, pillow-y dough. If it's sticky and not pulling away from the sides of the bowl, add more flour 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough is no longer sticky.
First rise: Grease a large bowl with oil and transfer the kneaded dough to the bowl. Turn it a couple times so the ball of dough is coated. Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap. Allow the dough to rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until doubled in size. I usually leave the bowl on the counter near the stove.
Shape the rolls: Punch the risen dough down and transfer it to a lightly floured surface. Use a knife or bench scraper to dive the dough into 4 equal parts. Divide each part again into 4 more parts for a total of 16 pieces of dough. The size doesn't have to be exact, but if you're aiming for perfection use a kitchen scale. Shape the dough into a ball and tuck any loose ends underneath the ball of dough (refer to video for visual).
Second rise: Generously grease a 9x13 glass baking pan (or two 9-inch round or square pans) with butter. Place the rolls in the pan not touching each other. Cover the pan with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap. Allow rolls to rise for 1 hour.
Bake the rolls: Preheat oven to 350° F. Wait 10 minutes so the oven is nice and hot, then uncover the rolls and bake them for 20 to 24 minutes or until golden brown. Check the rolls around 15 minutes and make sure the tops aren't brown too quickly (if they are, cover the pan with aluminum foil). Cut and serve rolls immediately.
Yeast: You can also use instant yeast, but it doesn't need to proof in warm liquid. Simply add it with the first cup of flour and continue with the rest of the recipe. Rising times will be quicker with instant yeast.Make ahead instructions: After shaping the rolls, cover the pan tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil (I like an airtight lid). Immediately place rolls in the refrigerator for up to 12 hours. Before baking, remove the rolls from the refrigerator and allow them to rise at room temperature for 3 hours. Bake according to instructions.Store dinner rolls in an airtight container for 2 to 3 days or individually wrap them and freeze the rolls in an airtight container for up to 1 month. Defrost in the refrigerator before bringing to room temperature.High altitude adjustments (Denver CO, altitude: 5,820 ft): Use bread flour instead of all purpose flour. If the dough is too stiff, add an extra 1-2 tablespoons warm milk. Rising times will be quicker. Look for the dough doubled in size and rolls to be puffy.Suggested tools: Kitchen scale, stand mixer with a dough hook, bench scraper and baking pan.