Thursday, November 08, 2007

Cinnamon raisin rolls

1/3 cup sugar
1 cup warm milk
1 1/2 tsp yeast
4 Tbsp butter, melted
2 eggs, beaten
1 Tbsp orange zest
1 1/4 tsp salt
4 to 4 1/4 cups flour

4 Tbsp butter, melted
1/2 cup sugar
2 Tbsp cinnamon
3/4 cup raisins (soaked in hot water 15 minutes, drained)

In a large bowl, dissolve sugar in warm milk. Add yeast and let sit until foamy, about 5-10 minutes.

Add butter, eggs, orange zest, salt and 3 cups flour. Stir until well until it evenly mixed. Turn dough our onto a floureds surface. Slowly incorporate the remaining 1 cup of flour, kneading dough until smooth and slightly sticky about 5 to 10 minutes. Shape the dough into a ball and place in a large, lightly oiled bowl. Turn dough over in bowl to coat with the oil from the bowl.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 2 hours. After the dough has risen, punch down. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and let sit 20 minutes.

In the meantime, make the filling. Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Drain raisins. Melt butter. Keep each of these separate. Roll dough out into a 12" x 20" rectangle. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture evenly. Top with raisins.

Starting with the long side, roll dough into a cylinder. Place seam side down on a flat surface and cut crosswise into 12 slices. Place dough slices, flat side down, in a greased 9x13 pan, preferably glass. Crowd them so they touch - this way they'll rise up nice and tall! Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

The next morning...

Remove the rolls from the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature while the oven pre-heats to 375°.

Bake rolls until just golden, 30 to 35 minutes. Remove pan from oven and immediately take them out of the baking dish (you don't want them to overcook). Let the rolls cool slightly and serve warm, sprinkled with cinnamon sugar.

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