The dream house that I hold in my head is sunny and smells like banana bread. It has a real-life adult couch and big, fluffy, matching, totally not hand-me-down bathroom towels. The bookshelves aren’t dusty and my desk is huge and spotless. There’s also a lovely woman that comes over everyday to help me clean my kitchen. She’s wise and knows everything about life. She’s my secret, dream house guru… and she does dishes.
My dream house has hints of food everywhere. Raspberry colored lamps in the living room. Black coffee colored walls in the bedroom. A French vanilla bathroom. Avocado rugs. Pink Himalayan sea salt for a little girl’s room. Fig colored guest room. Cauliflower whites through the office.
This is what my brain does. It makes a dream house and fills it with beautiful food smells, food colors, love, cat hair (why!?), and kid laughs.
I’m going to try hard not to call these cinnamon rolls. These are not cinnamon rolls. They’re something better and messier… that starts out just like cinnamon rolls.
We’re making a soft yeasted dough, with lemon zest.
This dough gets kneaded with a dough hook in an stand mixer for about 10 minutes.
It’s a soft dough… that means you really need a stand mixer to make this dough. Otherwise, the dough will stick to your hands like mad.
After kneading in the mixer, I quickly knead it in a bit more flour and get it ready for its first rise.
Can you see the sheen in the dough? That means the dough is a bit sticky. That’s what we want!
After an hour of warm resting, the dough is ready for action. Time for rolling and filling.
Dough is doused in browned butter and topped with a crushed raspberry, lemon zest, sugar, and cornstarch mixture.
And then it gets messy.
Yes… there is a raspberry juice mess going on here. After rolling and slicing, and carefully lifting these rolls into the buttered pan you’ll totally have sticky hands. Don’t freak out. Sometimes food gets messy.
Let the rolls rise in a warm zone and bake up to perfection.
Believe it or not, these rolls aren’t overly sweet. The dough is soft and tender. The filling is bright and fruit studded. I topped the cooled rolls with a quick lemon glaze. Doughy and fruit sweet. These rolls TOTALLY belong in my dream house. What more do you want from life?
Lemon Raspberry Breakfast Rolls
makes 12 rolls
adapted from Food and Wine
For the Dough:
1 cup milk (I used 2 percent)
2/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted buttered, softened to room temperature
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus 1/2 cup for kneading, plus more for sprinkling the counter
For the Filling:
1 heaping cup fresh raspberries (if using frozen, do not thaw)
1/3 cup sugar plus 1/2 cup sugar for dusting
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, melted, browned and slightly cooled
For the Glaze:
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon water
To make the dough:
In a small saucepan over low heat, warm the milk to about 95 degrees. Pour the warm milk into the bow of an electric stand mixer fit with a paddle attachment. Stir the sugar and yeast into the warm milk and let sit for 5 to 7 minutes. The yeast will foam and bubble. That’s how you know it’s alive. After frothy, add the butter, eggs, lemon zest, and sea salt to the yeast mixture. Add 4 1/4 cups flour. Beat on low speed with the paddle attachment for 2 minutes. Stop the mixer, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and replace the paddle with a dough hook. Beat dough with the dough hook on medium speed for about 10 minutes.
Dust a clean counter with flour. Scrape the dough out onto the work surface. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup of flour and knead for about 2 minutes. Dough will be soft and slightly sticky. That’s right!
Place dough in a large, lightly oiled bowl. Sprinkle a bit of flour on top of the dough. Cover with plastic wrap and a kitchen towel, and place in a slightly warm place to rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
While dough rises, grease a 9×13-inch pan with butter. Set aside.
To make the filling:
In a medium bowl toss together raspberries, sugar, lemon zest, and cornstarch. Crush the raspberries just slightly as you stir. Set aside.
In a medium saucepan, melt butter until it is browned and fragrant. Set aside to cool slightly.
To assemble the rolls:
When the dough has doubled in size, turn out onto a floured work surface and gently knead for 1 minute. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a roughly 10×20-inch rectangle.
Spread the butter over the dough. Spread the filling over the dough. Raspberries will be here and there across the dough. Sprinkle the dough and fruit with 1/2 cup granulated sugar.
Working quickly, tightly roll up the dough into a 20-inch long log. Cut the log into quarters, then cut each quarter into 3 pieces. Carefully and quickly lift the rolls into the prepared pan. The rolls will release juice into the bottom if the pan. That’s fine! Cover pan with plastic wrap and a kitchen towel and let rest in a warm place for 1 hour, until puffed.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Bake rolls for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden and bubbling. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 30 minutes.
To make the glaze:
In a small bowl, whisk together sugar, lemon juice, and water. Drizzle glaze over cooled rolls and serve. Rolls are best served the day they are made but will last up to 3 days well wrapped at room temperature.