You might be wondering who is Tillie and why am I making her rolls? Well I’ve had cinnamon rolls on the brain for the past few weeks and had been checking out various recipes when I came across a card in my massive recipe file that was titled “Tillie’s Never Fail Rolls”. I’ve never met Tillie. She was from Kansas and the grandmother of an old friend of mine. The card was actually stuck on a recipe for french bread that I baked earlier in the week. It was well worn and looking at it brought back memories of baking in my teeny tiny kitchen (it was so small that when I opened the fridge I had to back up into the living room) many years ago when I lived in Denver.
It’s been years since I used this recipe and I had forgotten how easy it is to work with this dough. Next time I think I might sprinkle some sesame seeds over the dinner rolls before baking or make a savory batch of “cinnamon rolls”-spreading the dough with sautéed scallions and and a little cheddar cheese, then rolling and slicing.
Never Fail Rolls
2 cups lukewarm water
1/2 cup sugar
2 packages yeast
2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
Mix all together and beat until smooth. I did this by hand with a wooden spoon.
2 eggs, well beaten
1/2 cup vegetable oil
4-1/2 cups flour
Beat together. I used the kitchen aid mixer with the dough hook for about 3 minutes. If you are kneading by hand you will want to knead until you have a very smooth dough, probably about 6 minutes. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let rise for about 40 minutes.
Tillie’s recipe says “roll into any shape you desire, place in pan and let rise for 40 minutes”. At this point I divided the dough in half and formed balls for dinner rolls and placed in a round, buttered cake pan. I took the other half, rolled it into a rectangle, brushed it with melted butter, covered it with cinnamon, sugar and chopped pecans, then rolled the dough into a log and then sliced it into individual rolls and placed in a buttered pan and let them rise for 40 minutes. Take a look at the photo above on the left. Preheat oven to 400 degrees,
Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and place on a cooling rack.
***I halved the recipe for the dough and made 7 dinner rolls and 10 cinnamon rolls.
Frosting for the cinnamon rolls:
4 tablespoons butter, softened
2 cups confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
3-6 tablespoons hot water
Mix butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla. Add hot water 1 tablespoon at a time until the glaze reaches desired consistency. Spread over slightly cooled rolls.
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