Sweet Orange Rolls

By Posie (Harwood) Brien
May 11, 2017
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Author Notes: My mom used to make us these as a special occasion weekend breakfast when we were little. They have all the wow factor of a cinnamon roll, without the fuss of a yeasted dough. Basically a biscuit dough patted flat and rolled up, they're filled (and topped) with a very simple and quick orange sauce that, when cooked, gets deliciously jammy and marmalade-like. Read the full story on these rolls Posie (Harwood) Brien

Makes: 15 rolls

For the filling

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 2 tablespoons orange zest
  • 1/2 cup sugar

For the dough

  • 2 cups (240 grams) flour
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
  • 1 cup cold milk
  1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. As soon as it melts, whisk in the flour until smooth. Add the orange juice and orange zest and cook until the mixture thickens slightly (about 1-2 minutes). Remove from the heat, add the sugar, and stir until the sugar dissolves. Set aside to cool while you make the dough.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cut in the cold butter until it's in small pea-sized lumps.
  3. Add the milk to the flour mixture and stir with a fork until the dough just begins to come together. Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead it very gently—folding it over on itself as you go—until the dough is fairly smooth. (You should still see chunks of butter which is good!)
  4. Roll the dough out to a rectangle, roughly 15" x 10" and about 1/4" thick. Reserve 1/2 cup of the orange filling, and spread the remaining filling in an even layer over the dough. Leave a narrow strip of dough bare around all the edges.
  5. Preheat the oven to 400° F. Grease a muffin tin VERY WELL (the filling makes these rolls very likely to stick!). You can also bake them all nestled together in a 9" x 13" pan.
  6. Starting with a long edge, roll the dough up lengthwise into a long log. Pinch the seam closed very firmly so the filling doesn't escape. Using a serrated knife (or non-flavored dental floss!), slice the log into 12-15 equal pieces. Place each piece in the well of your greased muffin tin, or arrange them all together in a 9" x 13" pan. If you use a regular muffin tin, you might have extra slices, so just bake them in another tin or in a mini pie pan.
  7. Bake for about 18 minutes, or until the rolls are lightly golden brown.
  8. Remove from the oven, run a knife around the edges to help prevent sticking, and let them cool a bit before serving. Drizzle with the extra reserved orange filling.

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