Sunday, March 25, 2012

Food Adultery: Lemon Poppy Seed Rolls

Good things, they are happening.

A best friend is closing the gap and moving just 5 short hours away? Excitement!

A trip to see the family is right around the corner? Awww yea!

Sundays off? Delicious.

Cinnamon rolls for breakfast AND lunch. I have no words.

I take that last one back, these are not cinnamon rolls. They are what happens when cinnamon roll dough cheats on its filling and wraps itself around a lemon poppyseed muffin.

A fancy phrase that means you have everything in its place before making a recipe as opposed to furiously trying to measure flour and sugar while you are creaming butter and trying to remember how much salt you were supposed to add. One tablespoon? Teaspoon? Was the "t" lower case? Where is my recipe?!? Mise en place is organization, an important thing to have when ingredient lists are long and ratios are exact.

Making dough is a cool thing because it is never the same. The dough reacts to the temperature, the humidity, your hands- everything. You have to give it what it needs in order to get the right consistency. More liquid, more flour, more kneading- whatever it needs to turn into something elastic and orb-like.

Should the dough be limited to its long term partner cinnamon sugar? It is consistent, safe and we all know it will work out well.

But what about when granulated and brown sugars get infused with lots of lemon zest and juice then tossed with poppy seeds?

It is different, new and exciting. It is a one time thing, no strings attached, just to see what it would be like-

Good things, they are happening.

Lemon Poppyseed Sweet Rolls

makes 7-8 large rolls
(for the rolls)
3+ cups of AP flour
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1/4 c plus 1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 c milk
1 heaping tablespoon lemon zest
2 1/4 teaspoons yeast (equivalent to one .25oz packet)
1/4 c warm water
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick butter, softened and cubed

(for the filling)
3/4 c sugar
1/4 c brown sugar
2 tablespoons poppy seeds
juice from 1/2 a lemon
zest of 1 lemon

(for the frosting)
6 oz cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon butter, softened
1 1/2 c confectioners sugar
dash vanilla
2 tablespoons orange juice
juice from other 1/2 of lemon

1. Make your dough: In a small bowl, combine yeast, 1/2 teaspoon sugar, and warm water. Allow to sit for 10 minutes until foamy. While your yeast is yeasting, rub zest into sugar to perfume. When yeast is ready, pour the mixture into standing mixing bowl fitted with a whisk and add eggs, zesty sugar mixture, vanilla and milk. Stir until just combined. Change to dough hook and add in 2 3/4 c flour. Mix on medium for 4-5 minutes (dough will be sticky). Add butter and mix on medium-high for 6 more minutes. Pour dough onto a well floured surface and knead 1/2-1/3 c more flour into it. Place dough into a greased mixing bowl, wrap in plastic and drape with a hand towel. Allow to rest for 1 hour.

2. While dough is resting, make your filling by massaging the zest with the sugars. Add juice and then fold in poppy seeds; set mixture aside.

3. Make the rolls: Once the dough has doubled in size, return it to the well floured surface and knead/incorporate small amounts of flour until dough is elastic and slightly tacky but no longer sticky (about 2-3 minutes). Allow to rest for5 minutes then roll dough into a rectangle about 8" by 10". Keep 1" x 8" of dough at the top of the rectangle plain and brush remaining dough with melted butter and cover evenly with filling. This strip of plain dough will be your seal. Beginning with the 8" side that is covered with filling, roll dough tightly into a cylinder and pinch the seal to ensure your rolls won't unravel. Slice into 7-8 equalish pieces.

Place rolls cut-side up in a greased 9x13 pan. You can bake them now at 350 for 20-25 minutes or refrigerate them overnight. Just cover tightly with plastic wrap and allow to rest on the counter for 1 hour before baking the next morning.

4. After baking, brush rolls with melted butter and ice with cream cheese frosting (to make frosting cream the butter and cream cheese until smooth; add sugar and flavorings and whip until fluffy)

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