These happened by accident. Some accidents are happy. I wanted to make homemade cinnamon rolls for brunch the next morning. I started to proof the yeast in warm water….no foam. When you add yeast to warm water and a pinch of sugar, the yeast wakes up and comes to life, creating a beer-like foam. I had no foam. I looked at the jar of yeast and discovered that it had expired. It was too late to go to the store and I wasn’t sure if I could change the menu, so I started rooting around in the freezer and found a bag of Rhodes frozen dinner rolls. I usually use them to make Cabbage Rolls (recipe to come soon) but I thought, maybe these will work. They did! Hooray, delicious homemade cinnamon rolls – almost as much work as making them from scratch so you can still feel like you are a bad-ass brunch maker. If I ever decide to become a super hero that might be my title. B.A.B.M.? Plan on starting these the night before.
- 1 package of Rhodes frozen dinner rolls- they come in a bag of about thirty.
- 2 sticks of salted butter, softened and divided.
- 1/2 C. sugar
- 3 T. cinnamon
- flour for dusting
- 1 1/4 C. powdered sugar
- 3 T. heavy cream
- 1 t. vanilla
In the evening before you want to serve these, take the rolls out of the freezer and place them into a large, greased bowl. Just pile them in. Spray a piece of plastic wrap with cooking spray and cover the frozen rolls loosely. Let the bowl sit on the counter. It takes about 6-8 hours for the rolls to thaw and rise. In the morning, punch the dough down and form it into one big ball. Knead it a few times to get most of the air out. The dough will be very elastic. Butter a 9 x 13 baking pan or dish. Dust a cutting board with a bit of flour and roll the dough out into a big rectangle. This dough will keep springing back at you, don’t give up. Keep rolling till you get to about 11 x 17 inches. Spread 1 1/2 C. of the softened butter onto the dough. Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl and sprinkle it all over the rectangle of dough.
Roll the dough into a 17 inch log, lengthwise and place the seam-side down on the board. Use a sharp knife to cut the log into round slices about 2 inches thick. Place each roll into the buttered pan. It’s ok, even preferable if they touch a bit. You should be able to get about 12-14 rolls from this recipe. The rolls need to rise again. I found the fastest way to do this is in the oven with just the light turned on. Cover them loosely with plastic and set them into the oven to rise for about an hour. Take them out of the oven. Preheat it to 350 and bake the cinnamon rolls for about 20-25 minutes. They should be just golden and if you check the center, the dough will be cooked through, but still soft. Let the pan sit on the counter for a few minutes to cool a bit. Meanwhile make the glaze. Melt the remaining 4 T. of butter in a bowl. Add the powdered sugar, cream, and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Pour the glaze over the warm rolls.