17-48: Buttery Vanilla Rolls

In my holiday baking batch from last year (XMAS 15), I included 17-67: Coconut Crescents to offer some variety to the endless types of cookies. ? 17-48: Buttery Vanilla Rolls were included in this year’s holiday baking (XMAS 16) for much the same reason, although I think I ended up with a better mix of items this year. ??

I liked that these were baked in muffin cups as well–I thought that might make them easier to pack up and distribute/ship as gifts. To make them holiday-ish, I sprinkled them with a bit of red and green decorating sugar while they were cooling. ?

I learned a lot about cake yeast during the shopping/planning for this recipe.

  1. Cake (fresh) yeast is not the same as active dry yeast.
  2. Cake yeast is found in the refrigerated section of the market, not the baking/dry section.
  3. Active dry yeast can be substituted for cake yeast if you are like me and did not learn these things until after a frustrating and unsuccessful trip to the market.

Ingredients. There’s not a lot to these–it’s more about process than content.

As per this link from above, it basically works out to about 1 packet of dry yeast to 1 packet of fresh yeast. If you’re working off a big container of yeast like I do, a standard package is equivalent to 2¼ tsp of yeast. ?

I foolishly tried to mix this by hand originally (like I do with most bread doughs), but it quickly occurred to me that this was not going to work the same as a bread dough–this was much more similar to a pie or pastry dough, where the butter needs to be cut in quickly and evenly. Before it turned into even more of a greasy mess, I stopped and got out my new food processor.

My (early) Christmas present, getting used a lot for these recipes. I started off first with the regular sharp metal blade, which was not working well–the dough still wasn’t coming together properly. I scooped all the contents back out into the original big mixing bowl, cleaned all the processor parts, switched to the dough blade, and put it all back in. With a bit of added flour and some well-timed pulses, I was able to even it out and save the dough. It probably wasn’t as great as it could have been, but I think it worked out well enough.

I tripled this recipe (hence the way over-filled food processor bowl in the previous picture), and so I ended up with 6 dough balls instead of just the two. I originally missed the part about letting the dough rise (before I cut them up), so I piled all of these into a big bowl and let them rise just like that.

While my dough balls rose, I cleaned the food processor (again) and used it to whip up the vanilla/butter filling for the rolls.

They did get a bit bigger, although it’s tough to tell since the balls are made up of bits I stuck together to roughly get each “ball” to the same size/weight.

After rolling out each “ball”, I experimented with a few different methods of dividing up each rectangle for the triangles needed to make the rolls. The one I liked the best was this one, it gave a lot of long skinny triangles that made nice tucked rolls. The triangles that were too small got combined together into big-enough triangles.

Rolls with a bit of filling in the middle and then tucked/rolled up–I wanted to keep them as closed as possible. As they rose a bit more, they started to pop themselves back apart.

I stuffed some of the trays really full–I figured the paper cups would keep each roll from sticking together.

After baking and a sprinkle of powdered sugar & some red/green sugar crystals. I wrapped up each one and tossed 2-3 in each giftee bag–I didn’t get too many rave reviews on these ones, but they made a nice mild, nut-free option in each assortment.

Grade: B+

?? Interested in the full list of Simply Delicious treats we made for 2016’s holiday baking extravaganza? (XMAS 16) ?

How about another year’s Simply Delicious holiday bake-off?  XMAS 15