Thursday, December 15, 2011

Test Kitchen Thursday - Candy Cane Rolls

This week my bread machines have been humming.  Sunday made some Oatmeal Bread to go with Alan's Chicken Noodle Soup.  Monday made a couple loaves of beer bread.  Tuesday made some sweet braided loaves.  Yet to make this week - Stollen (see photos and recipe from last year) and a Hefenkranz Wreath (ach du lieber - my German heritage is showing). 

These little candy cane rolls were a delightful treat.  These were made for the teacher breakfast at school (where my husband signed up and then let me know he needed to take something).

Ever since seeing them in the 2011 Taste of Home Homemade Food Gifts magazine I knew I had to try them.  They reminded me of the big candy cane coffee cakes that were a Christmas tradition growing up.  I made a number of modifications to this recipe to make it my own - so it does differ from the printed version.

Candy Cane Roll Recipe (my version):

1/4 Cup warm water
3/4 Cup warm milk
1/4 Cup sugar
1 t  bread salt (or regular salt)
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 1/2 T orange peel, small zest
3 1/4 - 3 3/4 Cups all purpose flour
2 1/4 t instant yeast
3/4 Cup red candied cherries, chopped
1/4 Cup dried apricots, chopped

1 Cup powdered sugar
1 T milk

Place water and milk together in a glass measuring cup.  Microwave just until warm (not hot).
Place the ingredients (except fruit) into the bread machine.  Set machine to the dough cycle.  Add the dried fruit when your bread machine asks for add ins.

If you don't have a bread machine:  In a large bowl, dissolve yeast (use 1 pkg active yeast) in warm water.  Add warm milk, sugar, shortening, salt, egg and 2 cups of flour; beat until smooth.  Stir in cherries.  Add enough of the remaining flour to form a soft dough.  Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6 - 8 minutes.  Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top.  Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.

Continue for both methods:
Punch dough down, let rest for 10 minutes.  Divide dough in half.  Roll each half in a 12" x 7" rectangle.  Cut twelve 1 inch strips from each rectangle. 

Pizza cutter worked great to make the cuts.
Twist each strip and place 2" apart on greased baking sheets, shaping one end like a cane.  Cover and let rise until doubled, about 45 minutes.

Ignore my poor pan.
Bake at 375 degree F for 12 - 15 minutes or until golden brown.  Cool completely.  Combine powdered sugar and milk; frost rolls.

These rolls turned out GREAT!  Ask Grant - he ate 3 of them in one sitting (and would have eaten more if mommy hadn't stopped him).  We all liked them!

The main thing I changed from the printed recipe was the addition of the dried apricots - this was the secret ingredient in mom's large candy cane coffee cakes.  Truly it really makes the roll delicious.  The other ingredient I added was the orange zest.  Again - gives sweet roll dough a great flavor especially when paired with other fruits.  If you remember my post from this past Tuesday - you may notice in some of the pictures that the oranges were missing their skin when we made OJ.  Yeah - I was sure to zest them prior to making these yummy rolls.


Mom said...

Did you have to make 2 batches then, if most of them got eaten at your house? Look YUM!

RA said...

I have a batch rising right now! Wanted to let you know, though, that you left the amount of shortening out of your posted recipe. I think it's 1/4 cup.