Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas to All

Grandma's Caramel Rolls

I have a confession.  I wrote this blog about my Grandma's caramel rolls LAST Christmas and I forgot to post it!  So now, one year later here is the recipe for you.  

These caramel rolls are a tradition in my family.  Each year my dad will bake the rolls and my family enjoys them together 0n Christmas morning.  This year however, I decided it was time for me to attempt this recipe passed down from my Grandma.  As soon as you take your first bite, you will know it was worth all the time you spent in the kitchen making these oh so good caramel rolls.

Roll Ingredients 
1 cup of milk
1/2 cup of sugar
1/2 cup of butter
1 tsp of salt 
2 beaten eggs
2 pkgs of dry yeast
1/2 cup of warm water (105 to 115 degrees)
1/2 tsp of sugar
6 cups of flour 

Mix the milk, sugar, butter and salt together and bring to a boil
Cool to luke warm
Add the beaten eggs
Dissolve the yeast and 1/2 tsp of sugar into 1/2 cup of warm water and add to the previous ingredients
Add flour and knead by hand or with a kitchen aid
Let the dough rise

Caramel Ingredients
1 cup of brown sugar
1/4 cup of dark corn syrup
1/2 cup of butter

While the dough is rising, bring brown sugar, dark corn syrup and butter to a boil, making the caramel sauce  
Spread the caramel sauce on a 9 by 13 pan (or a 9 by 9 square pan could be used)
Once the caramel sauce is evenly spread, place 36 pecan halves evenly on top.

When the dough has risen, punch it down and roll it into a 16 by 20 rectangle
Brush enough melted butter on the dough to cover it and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar
Cut the dough into 12 strips that are each about 16 inches long
Roll each strip (like a rolled bandage) and place each one in the 9 by 13 pan
Be sure that the ends of each strip is facing inward toward the center of the pan
Let the rolls rise 

Bake in the center rack of a 375 degrees oven for 25 minutes
Let the rolls cool in the pan for 2-3 minutes, then invert on a rack and the rolls will fall from the pan

If you want to make the rolls ahead of time, wrap them in aluminum foil when they have cooled and stick them in the freezer.  When you are ready to serve them, heat the oven to 300 degrees and place them in the oven for about an hour or until they are soft and hot all the way through.  Once heated through, sit down and enjoy every bite you have with your caramel rolls.  Before you know it they will be gone!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Let the Fall Baking Begin!

 from "Taste of Home's Complete guide to Baking"

I'm not going to lie, I love that Fall is here and Summer is over.  Although I love Summer, I kind of put my baking on hold then because honestly, who wants to turn on their oven when its 90 degrees outside.  Now that the leaves are changing colors and it's beautiful outside, it's the perfect excuse to bake (and eat) as many apple and pumpkin desserts as possible.  

Make this Apple Spice Cake and I promise you will not be disappointed.  

Cake Ingredients
 2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
1 2/3 cups sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups chopped and peeled baking apples
3/4 cup chopped walnuts

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.  In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, oil and vanilla.  Add dry ingredients and mix well.  Fold in apples and walnuts (batter will be thick).

2. Spread batter into two greased 9 in round baking pans.  Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.  Let cakes cool completely on wire rack before frosting.

Frosting Ingredients
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup milk
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups confectioners' sugar 
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 to 1 1/4 cups chopped walnuts

Warning:  I have made this frosting a few different times.  Sometimes it turns out delicious, other times it's a complete failure.  This time was a failure so I had to alter the recipe so the frosting wouldn't ruin the cake.      

1. Combine flour and milk in a saucepan until smooth. 
2.  Bring mixture to a boil; cook and stir for 1 minute.  Set aside, uncovered at room temperature for 20 minutes.  
3. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter, confectioners' sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy.  Add salt and cooked flour mixture and beat until smooth.  
4. Frost between layers, over top and on the sides of the cake.  
5. Carefully press the walnuts around the sides.  

Eat up and enjoy on a nice Fall day....soon Winter will be here!