Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

Last week I spent an afternoon with my mom learning how to make the cinnamon rolls we grew up having. She learned from my grandma, who learned from my great-grandma, and so on. I’m going to share the recipe with you.
Cinnamon Rolls
6 tablespoons Crisco
1 cup milk
Heat Crisco and milk on stove top, stirring until the Crisco is melted. Remove from heat and let cool.
¾ cups sugar
2 cups lukewarm water
2 teaspoons salt 
2 packets of yeast, or if you buy in bulk, 2 heaping tablespoons 
4 eggs
Add the sugar, water, salt and yeast to a bowl and mix slightly and let sit for yeast to activate. When the mixture looks bubbly, add the cooled Crisco and milk mixture. Sift in flour (no exact measurement… just dump a couple cups in the sifter and add it… & you may need to add more, it just depends on the consistency of the dough) and mix with a spoon until it reaches a cake batter consistency.
Then add the 4 eggs and beat with a mixer until fairly smooth. Then continuously sift in more flour until a dough forms (you will be able to use a spoon at first but will have to use hands at the end. And once again, there are no exact measurements. My mom said that she ends up using around 4-5 cups total flour in the first step and this step).
Then beat & knead the dough to get out air bubbles and work it into a large ball form.
Once all the ingredients have been mixed, pour just a small bit (no measurement again) of oil in a large bowl and place the dough in the bowl. Work the dough around to get it coated with the oil and place the oil covered side face up in the bowl. Cover with a kitchen towel and let rise. Once the dough has risen (after a couple hours more or less), knead and punch down. Cover with the towel and let rise again.
After the dough has risen a second time, it’s time to form the rolls. Melt some butter (no measurements again! Recognize a pattern?) in a pan and have it melted before you start.  Spray pans with non-stick cooking spray. Sprinkle flour over your work surface. Using your hand, pull the dough up out of the bowl and use a knife to cut a portion of it off.
Spread the dough out on your work surface being careful not to push it down too much, but rather just shape it. IMG_4920
Spread your melted butter out over the dough.IMG_4921
Then cover with brown sugar. IMG_4922
Sprinkle with cinnamon. IMG_4924
Roll your dough into a log and then cut off rolls. Place them in the pan, filling your pan. After your pan is filled, let them rise for a bit in the pan.IMG_4925IMG_4935
Repeat until all the dough has been used. I think the batch we did made 5 pans of rolls.
Bake at 375 degrees until the tops are a light brown (approximately 15-20 minutes). Remove from oven and let cool. IMG_4940   
Once all the rolls have been baked, mix together powdered sugar, vanilla, and water to form a glaze (and again no measurements, just to taste! the glaze should be slightly runny to allow it to go over the rolls easily). Drizzle over your rolls and voila! IMG_4943
These freeze well and are great to give people around the holidays!
Another plus: If you can get the dough made, you can use it for dinner rolls too! My mom often makes up a batch and does a couple pans of dinner rolls and then the rest as cinnamon rolls. Two for the price of one! I’m nervous about trying these on my own but excited to know how!


  1. YUM!!! And now I am craving Cinnamon rolls.

  2. Oh my, yummy! I am going to have to try this out!


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