Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Nutella Nut Rolls

Today I thought I would give you something new to contemplate. It's not a new recipe - in fact it's not really a recipe at all. Just a new way of looking at an old favorite. I want you to look at a breakfast roll in a new light. Kind of like trying on a new style of jeans that you never thought would look good on you, but somehow they do . . . or like getting your kids dressed in their Sunday best for church - the other members wouldn't guess that during the rest of the week they like to go covered in dirt and mostly naked (especially true of my Angel Girl) . . . or like rearranging your furniture - all of a sudden it looks like a new room, but it's still just your same old furniture looked at in a new light. That is what today is about.  I want you to change the way you think about a cinnamon roll, and make it into a Nutella Nut Roll.
   As I'm sitting here, enjoying my English Muffin smeared with Nutella, I couldn't sit on my hands with this "recipe" any longer. Who knows how many Nutella/chocolate fans out there I would be depriving if I didn't share my moment of genius with them? (I'm by no means saying that I'm a genius, but the Nutella Nut roll will make you feel like one.) I'm here to share with all of you, that Nutella is not just for a last minute smear on toast, waffles or muffins, or even an ingredient in Nutella Crinkle Cookies. No Nutella is more than that. It can elevate your morning breakfast roll into so much more than mediocre.
  That being said. If you don't like Nutella or chocolate, you won't like this recipe and I feel so sad for you.

Here's what you do:
Use whatever cinnamon roll/sticky bun dough recipe you like. Today I used this brioche recipe from Flour's Famous Sticky Buns. It makes a double batch, so the last time I made it I froze half. Now I have the dough ready (after a couple days defrosting in the fridge) without all the work.
   Roll out the dough just as you would for cinnamon rolls/sticky buns. I think my rectangle was around 12x16 inches and about 1/4 inch thick.

Now, instead of sprinkling on the cinnamon and sugar, just spread on the Nutella. I don't know how much I used. Somewhere around a cup, I would guess. Just cover the dough from edge to edge - leaving 1/2 to 1 inch uncovered on the long side furthest from you.

Then come the nuts. Hazelnuts would be ideal, but I didn't have any on hand. You favorite nut would do. I used almonds today. I find it's easiest to chop them in my mini food processor.

When they are chopped to you're liking, stop. You'll need about 1 cup. (At least I used 1 cup. You can use how much or how little you would like.)

Just sprinkle on the chopped nuts evenly over the Nutella.

Now comes the rolling. I find that I can roll a more even log if I start in the middle, and work my way to the sides.

Keep rolling, keeping it as tight as possible, without squeezing out all the Nutella and nuts in the process.

When you get to the end, lay the roll seem side down. (I'm using my dad's old Tupperware pastry mat. I love this thing.)

Using a serrated, long knife, cut through the center of the log - making two equal halves. (If you are cutting on a mat like me, be very careful not to cut the mat too.

Now cut each half in half again.  So you now have 4 equal parts.

Finally, cut each quarter of the log into three equal parts. When you are done you will have 12 equal rolls. (Thank you Alton Brown, you are forever my culinary hero.)

Place the rolls into a greased baking dish. 9x13 would work. I used a 10x15.

Cover them and let them sit until touching and tripled in size.

Then just bake per your dough recipe's instructions. I cooked mine @ 350F for 35 minutes. When they come out they should look something like this. (If you used a 9x13 your rolls will be closer together.)

As for the frosting, you can spread on some more Nutella - but I found myself wanting the traditional twang of the cream cheese frosting. My solution: mix equal parts softened cream cheese and Nutella with a tough of powdered sugar and a splash of milk. The best Nutella Cream Cheese frosting ever. :)

Here's the "recipe"

Nutella Nut Rolls

1 batch of your favorite cinnamon roll/sticky bun dough recipe (I used this one)
about 1 cup chopped nuts (Hazelnuts would be ideal, but use your favorite)

Roll out the dough to a rectangle 12x16 and 1/4 inch thick. Spread Nutella in an even layer, from edge to edge - leaving 1/2 to 1 inch of dough uncovered along the longest side away from you. Sprinkle the chopped nuts evenly over the Nutella. Roll the dough into a log, starting at the longest side facing you. When you reach the far end, without the Nutella, place the log seem side down. Cut the log in half. Cut each half in half again. You now have 4 equal parts. Cut each quarter into 3 equal parts. You will end up with 12 equal rolls. Place the rolls into a greased 9x13 baking dish. Cover an let rise until touching and tripled in size. Bake per the dough's directions. I did 350F for 35 minutes. Frost with more Nutella, or Nutella Cream Cheese Frosting. Enjoy!

Nutella Cream Cheese frosting:
    Equal parts softened cream cheese and Nutella. Add powdered sugar and milk, 1 Tbsp at a time until the desired taste and consistency are achieved. Spread over Nutella Nut Rolls.

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