Melissa commented last week asking if I had a good recipe for cinnamon rolls. This one is near and dear to my heart - and I'm thrilled to share it. (Note: this was originally posted February 4, 2006.)
A family tradition is a gift from generation to generation. It is a way to preserve the past for the future. It requires someone being intentional about keeping the tradition alive. I would like to honor the generations before me who have kept this family tradition alive in our family by sharing a special family recipe!
This recipe is wonderfully versatile because with one dough you can make bread, rolls, and cinnamon rolls. The rolls are traditional at Christmas, Thanksgiving, and Easter. The cinnamon rolls are always served on Christmas morning.
My mom remembers her mom making these rolls in a yellow Pyrex mixing bowl. I remember her telling me how she and her sisters would “fight” over who got the middle cinnamon roll because it had the most goodies!
I remember my mom making this recipe in a yellow bowl as well and seeing the dough rise over the top in the refrigerator. Now the tradition includes making this recipe in the yellow bowl and we each have one.
We have been able to trace this recipe back for four generations. My Grandma got the recipe from her Aunt Louise who found the recipe in a newspaper. And, I intend to pass it on to my daughters for a fifth generation. I think it is so special to carry on this tradition and I am thankful for those before me who were intentional about keeping it alive.
Homemade Rolls and Cinnamon Rolls Recipe
2 pkgs. Yeast
2 beaten eggs
4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
2/3 c. melted Crisco (I use oil)
3/4 c. sugar
1 c. lukewarm water
10-11 c. flour
2 c. scalded milk
Soften yeast and dissolve 1 tsp. sugar in water; add milk (cooled to lukewarm), salt, ¾ c. sugar, and shortening. Add eggs and beat well. Add flour to make soft dough; let stand 10 minutes. Knead until smooth and elastic. Place in a greased bowl (yellow one of course!); turn dough once, cover and refrigerate. Shape rolls into cloverleaf shapes and place in greased muffin tins, cover, and let rise until doubled. Bake at 400-425 for 15-20 minutes. Punch down unused dough and refrigerate.
For Cinnamon Rolls:
Make above dough. Then roll out dough to approximately 12”wide by 18-24” long. Spread butter over the dough, leaving a ½-1” edge with no toppings. Layer brown sugar, cinnamon, and nuts generously over dough. Roll dough finishing with the bare edge. Cut slices about ¾-1” in width using dental floss. Place in round greased pan and let rise until doubled. Bake at 400-425 for 15-20 minutes.
Glaze: Mix powdered sugar and milk until of drizzling consistency. Drizzle and serve warm!
Rolls, cinnamon rolls, and bread can be frozen after baking. Reheat and serve. Add glaze to cinnamon rolls after thawing from the freezer and re-heating.