Tuesday, July 5, 2011

I am Pam's son Dallas, and I would like to talk to you about some soft, poofy, sweet, rich, decadent pillows of love. Sue's cinnamon rolls. This recipe comes to you as a continual labor of love from Sue Grey, and myself. It started out as a very difficult recipe with great results, and now is much easier with the same results. It does take time, patience, and a heavy electric mixer like a Kitchen Aid, but the pay offs are wonderful. These kick Cinnabon in the putooty.


2 teaspoons active dry yeast (most of 1 envelope)
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 cup milk
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
4 large eggs
6 to 7 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter
3 tablespoons corn syrup
1 heaping cup pecan pieces, toasted in a dry skillet
2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Begin to prepare the rolls, first sprinkling the yeast over 1/2 cup lukewarm water.
In a heavy-duty electric mixer with a dough hook on medium speed, cream together the 2 sticks butter and 2/3 cup sugar until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is light and fluffy.

Beat in the yeast mixture, milk, salt, 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla, eggs, and 5 1/2 cups of the flour. Beat for several minutes, adding flour 1/4 cup at a time until a cohesive but very sticky dough forms. Beat in no more flour than necessary to avoid hopeless stickiness. Beat for 5 minutes longer, until the dough becomes smooth and satiny and only a bit tacky. Pat the dough into a fat disk, transfer it to an oiled bowl, and turn to coat it with oil. Cover the bowl and set it aside in a warm, draft-free spot until the dough doubles in bulk, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. (I have found that if you put the dough covered in the fridge for about 8 hours, and let it rise there, it is much easier to roll out.)

Begin the filling and topping. You will need 2 baking pans for the rolls, one a 9 x 12- or 13-inch size and the other an 8- or 9-inch square. Or I use three deep nine inch cake pans. Combine the granulated and brown sugars and the cinnamon in a small bowl. Melt the 4 sticks butter in a small saucepan with the corn syrup. Combine the sugar cinnamon mixture with the butter mixture. Take 1/4 cup of the butter and sugar mixture and spread it out on the bottom of the small pan. Put 1/3 cup of the mixture on the bottom of the larger pan and set aside. Refrigerate the remaining butter, cinnamon, and sugar mixture for 20 minutes until it re-solidifies into a spreadable mixture the consistency of soft frosting.

Punch the dough down and roll it out into a 12 x 18-inch rectangle. Turn the edges up just the tiniest bit, to keep the butter you will be topping the dough with from running off. Spread the cinnamon butter, sugar mixture on the top. Sprinkle with the pecans. Roll up the dough from one of the rectangle's longer sides, snugly but not too tightly. Cut the dough with a sharp knife into 1 dozen slices. Arrange the slices, one of the cut sides up, in the 2 pans, placing 7 or 8 of them in the large pan and 4 or 5 in the small pan. Cover the pans loosely and let the dough rise until doubled again, about 1 hour longer. (Alternatively, the rolls can be placed in the refrigerator to rise much more slowly overnight, for 8 to 10 hours. Let the rolls sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before baking.)

Near the end of the dough's rising time, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bake the rolls for 25 to 30 minutes, until puffy and golden brown. I cook them with an over proof thermometer inside and remove them at 185 degrees. Let them sit in the pans on a baking rack for 5 to 10 minutes. Run a knife around the inside edges of both pans and invert the rolls onto one or more baking sheets. If any of the gooey topping remains stuck in the pans, scrape it out and plop it onto the rolls.

Prepare the glaze, mixing the ingredients with 1 tablespoon warm water. Add up to 1 tablespoon more water if the mixture is too thick to drop easily from a spoon. Drizzle the glaze over the warm rolls and serve. MAKES 1 DOZEN LARGE ROLLS.


  1. Congrats on the new blog! Long time email follower:) Loved the 'wave' video:)
    Cheers from Victoria, B.C. Canada!

  2. Thanks for the recipe...I know what I'm baking tomorrow!

    Vanessa in Oklahoma

  3. Thank you Dallas for this wonderful recipe, I'm going to give it a try!

  4. Hi you all! Just about to call it quits for the night - working on new patterns. Denise - Isn't The Incredible Hulk a real cute piece of work? He sits up between Robert and I and hands each of us a paw. We feel like walking out with him. He looks just like ET!

  5. Oh now its just plain mean to post things like this. =)

  6. I made these wonderful cinnamon rolls last Sunday and I must tell you they got rave reviews from everyone who was lucky enough to get one. Thank you for posting this. Soft, decadent pillows of love, indeed!