Kuglhopf Breakfast Rolls

Lately, I find myself reading new and old favorite blogs and noticing a recipe I must try IMMEDIATELY! In this case, it was the Kugelhopf Breakfast Rolls on Apartment Therapy The Kitchn.

I think this is a perfect recipe for a special occasion or house guests (or some house guests are special occasions). Luckily, my friend Andy was bunking at my place this past weekend while he was between homes. It was his luck that I experimented with this recipe! I also gave the extra 8 away to my neighbors – they didn’t complain either.

Try this for Father’s Day this weekend. 

Kugelhopf Breakfast Rolls from Apartment Therapy The Kitchn
Inspired by Bread and Chocolate Bakery and graciously adapted from Dorie Greenspan’s recipe

Makes 12 rolls

Kugelhopf Dough
2 tablespoons warm water (not hot)
1 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
1/3 cup whole milk, warmed (not hot)
1 3/4 cups flour (divided into 3/4 cup and 1 cup)
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 large eggs
1 large yolk
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon table salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

Filling
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Sugar Coating
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup granulated sugar

Stir the water and yeast together in a small mixing bowl until the yeast dissolves, then stir in the milk. Add just 3/4 cup of the flour and stir until it forms a smooth batter, about 100 strokes. Cover the bowl and let this poolish sit for at least 20 minutes or up to 60 minutes. In this time, the poolish should rise to twice its original size and you should see lots of little bubbles on the surface.

In a small bowl, combine the eggs, yolk, and almond extract. Stir this into the poolish.

In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine the remaining cup of flour, the sugar, and the salt. Pour the poolish-egg mixture into the flour and stir until it becomes a shaggy dough. Fit the mixer with a dough hook attachment and knead this dough on medium-high speed until it comes together and becomes smooth, five minutes.

Reduce the speed to medium and start adding the butter in blobs, waiting until the blob is nearly incorporated before adding the next. You may need to stop the mixer and scrape down the sides of the bowl during this time. Once all the butter has been added, increase the mixer speed back to medium-high and knead the dough for 10 minutes. The dough should come together in a ball, look glossy and supple, and jiggle like a custard if you tap it with your spatula.

Turn the dough out into a clean bowl, cover, and let rise for about an hour and half, until doubled in size. Put dough in the refrigerator and let it rest overnight (or up to two days). It may rise a little more in the fridge before cooling completely down. You can punch the dough down if it looks like it will rise over the edge of the bowl.

The next morning, turn the chilled dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Roll the dough out to roughly 10″ by 8,” or 1/2″ thick. Use more flour as needed if the dough is sticking to the work surface or your rolling pin. Brush the dough with melted butter, leaving an inch of un-buttered dough at the top. Sprinkle the buttered areas with the sugar. Roll the dough up and pinch it closed at the seam.

Using a pastry cutter or a chef’s knife, cut the dough into 12 equal pieces. Spray a muffin tin liberally with non-stick spray, including the wells and the surface of the tin. Nestle each roll into a well, pressing gently to make sure it settles in the bottom. Cover the tin and let the rolls rise for about an hour, until they’re just starting to peak over the tops of the wells.

Fifteen minutes before baking (when the rolls are almost to the top of the tins), preheat the oven to 375°.

Uncover the rolls and bake them for 25-30 minutes. When the rolls turn golden brown about halfway through cooking, tent them with foil to protect the edges from burning. The rolls are done when a cake tester comes out clean and the internal temperature registers at 200°.

Let the rolls cool just until you can handle them. Melt the butter in a small bowl and combine the cinnamon and sugar in a second bowl. Dip each roll into the butter and then roll it in the cinnamon-sugar. It’s easiest to dip and roll the bottom and then go back to dip and roll the top. Eat immediately, preferably with coffee and good company.

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