Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Caramel Pecan Rolls

Normally on weekends you'd think we would have extra time to devote to special breakfasts. For us, we still have to be up early and out the door by 8:45 at the latest. With five bodies needing to get showered and dressed, that doesn't always leave much time to eat, let alone something extravagant.

Of course I like to make sure the freezer is stocked with homemade waffles and the such but it's also nice to pull a fresh baked pan of sweet rolls out of the oven. So that's what I did Saturday night; I made up the dough, let it rise and then right before bed baked these most beautiful caramel rolls. Of course since the house was filled with the most amazing aroma, we had to sample one...or two!

We warmed up the pan again in the morning right before church and they were the perfect start to our day! I love how soft the rolls themselves are and the homemade caramel, oh where do I begin? My hubby is one tough critic and he even told me "they are amazing", if I can get him to say that about a baked good then I know it's good. He's not much of a sweets person.

I know baking with yeast can be intimidating for some, it's really quite one of the easiest things ever. Especially when you use a stand mixer such as one from KitchenAid. I let it do all the work for me. You won't be sorry when you taste how good these are. In fact, I'm trying to think of a good excuse just to make another pan!

Caramel Pecan Rolls

2-1/4 tsp active dry yeast
1 cup milk, room temp
2 eggs
5 tbsp melted butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
4 cups flour

for the filling:
1 tbsp melted butter
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

for the caramel:
2 sticks butter, cold
2 cups brown sugar
1/4 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup chopped pecans

In a bowl of a stand mixer, dissolve yeast into milk and let set for 5 minutes. Add in eggs, melted butter, sugar and salt; mix to combine. Gradually add in flour and beat until dough forms. If you need a little bit more flour to form a soft dough, add in small increments. Then switch to a dough hook and let knead for about 5 minutes. Remove dough and place into a lightly buttered or oiled bowl (large). Cover and let rise in a warm spot for one hour.

For the sauce, start melting butter in a medium sized saucepan. Add in brown sugar and corn syrup, stirring well. Bring to a boil and let cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Pour mixture into a greased 9x13-inch baking dish. Sprinkle chopped pecans over caramel and set aside.

When dough is ready, punch down and turn over onto a floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll dough out into a large rectangle, about 18-inch x 16-inch. With a pastry brush, spread melted butter all over dough. Then sprinkle both sugar and cinnamon over dough as well. Starting with the long side, roll up dough, making sure to pinch seams to seal. Cut into 14-15 slices. Place rolls down over caramel. Cover and let rise another 30 minutes before baking.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or just until golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool for a few minutes, then invert onto a cookie sheet or large platter. It may seem like there's a lot of caramel, don't worry! It softens up nicely and you'll appreciate the extra for your rolls.

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