The guys at work love when I bring in baked goodies, in fact, I think they come to depend on me bringing something in once a week. So I figured, why not cinnamon rolls? It’s been a very long time since I’ve made or had cinnamon rolls. However, the fact is that I did not already have a recipe for them, so I went to the Joy of Cooking website (I do not own the cookbook, my mom does though, and I remember that most all recipes from that cookbook always come out well.) And there it was, the lovely cinnamon roll recipe that I was about to dice up and modify to fit my needs. The dough rose and was nice, fluffy and moist, however, my cinnamon roll efforts were a bit dry because I crammed too many rolls into a pan, and then baked them too long. So make sure you give your rolls plenty of room to cook properly, and don't overcook them. Here it is, my modifications to the Joy of Cooking Cinnamon Rolls.
Walnut Cinnamon Rolls
In a small pot heat until warm (you know, that temperature that yeast likes):
1 ½ cups milk
Pour milk into a very large mixing bowl and add:
½ cup sugar
If the temperature is just right, then add:
2 packages (1/2 ounce) active dry yeast
Allow the yeast to bloom and bubble and get all moist. Now add and mix well:
½ cup butter, softened
½ tsp salt
5 eggs, beaten
Now gradually add flour into yeast mixture.
7 cups flour
I first add in one cup at a time with a wooden spoon, then I switch to using my electric hand mixer with dough hooks, and then finally turn dough onto a floured counter and knead the rest of the flour in. You want a nice elastic dough, not sticky, but not tough and hard. Once the dough is all mixed together and kneaded, place in a greased bowl, cover, and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. I usually fill a pan with boiling water and place it on the lower rack of my oven while the dough in the bowl is on the rack above the hot water.
Meanwhile, make the cinnamon filling by mixing the following in a medium bowl:
1 cup + 2 tbl packed brown sugar
6 tbl flour
¼ cup ground cinnamon
1 cup butter, softened
2 tbl milk
You will also need:
1 ½ cup walnuts
When it’s time to assemble the cinnamon rolls.
You can also make the powdered sugar icing. In a medium-sized bowl stir together:
¼ cup butter, melted
2 cup powdered (confectioners or icing, 10x) sugar
2 tbl milk
1 tsp vanilla
This should be a nice spreading consistency.
Once the dough has doubled in size punch it down. Divide dough in half (just to make it manageable) and place it on a floured surface and roll it out till a ¼ inch thick. Roll out second piece of dough. Spread both dough flats with the cinnamon fillings. Sprinkle filling with the walnuts. Roll dough into a roll and pinch to edges to seal. Slice into 1 inch or so thick pieces. Grease two 9x13 inch glass pans (or whatever pans you happen to have), and place the rolls in pans, leaving room for rising. Cover dough loosely with plastic wrap and let rise till double in a warm place, about 1 hour. You can refrigerate the rolls overnight and bake them fresh in the morning. Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush rolls with milk. Bake rolls for 20 to 25 minutes or until light brown and rolls sound hollow when you tap them. Be careful not to overcook them, they can burn easily and become dry. You can cover the rolls with tin foil for the last few minutes of baking so as not to burn the tops. Take rolls out of the oven and spread with the powdered sugar icing.
How many rolls does it make? A crap ton. Really the number or rolls are up to you, roll the dough out thick or thin, cut the rolls thick or thin, you control the number.
Roll 'em out