If you want your house to smell like sweet, home-baked goodness, if you want something swirly and hazelnut-y and cinnamon-y, if you love the taste of rye bread but also cinnamon rolls, if you need an idea of what to eat for breakfast for the rest of your life, folks, make these hazelnut rye rolls.
And even if none of the above applies to you but you are still a fellow carb lover, you should make these hazelnut rye rolls. If nothing else, do it for the glaze: the drippy cream cheese glaze. OK and maybe also the sweet swirly filling. Oh, and the buttery rye roll itself, YES. It’s just the right thing to do.
There have been a lot of sweet roll recipes in my day, and while each has been delicious in its own right, none can compare to the unique deliciousness of these rolls. I love the combination of toasted hazelnuts and rye flour going on here — it gives the flavor profile a little bit of earthiness and savory flavor that is a perfect complement to the sweetness imparted by the butter, cinnamon, sugar and cream cheese glaze. I made these on a whim, actually — meaning, the idea of hazelnuts and rye flour in a roll came to mind and I was all, “Well that sounds interesting and I will take any excuse to get a cinnamon roll in my life/belly,” and so it was. Grabbed the Red Star yeast, grabbed the butter, grabbed the flours and the sugar and salt and egg, and I got to work.
A few hours later, warm, fresh-baked roll on a plate in one hand, a mug of hot coffee in the other, and I was ready for full-on swirly sweet roll bliss. And so it was.
Apart from the potential finickiness of the dough (that is to say, you may find that your rye flour absorbs a lot of the liquid in the recipe and so you’ll need to add maybe an extra tablespoon, 1/4 cup, or even 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour as you knead the dough, no bigs!), this recipe could not be simpler to put together. And that’s a good thing, especially when you’re probably planning to make these for breakfast or brunch and so it’s early and you’ve only gulped down one cup of coffee and the sun isn’t even up yet and wait, why am I awake already again? Oh, right. Delicious sweet rolls in my life/belly, that’s why. Honest, it will all be worth it. And you can have an extra cup of coffee — and an extra roll or two, too — to make up for it. It’s the right thing to do.
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 2¼ teaspoons (1 packet) Red Star active dry yeast
- ½ cup warm milk (about 100 degrees F)
- 2½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 cup rye flour
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 egg
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
- ½ cup coarsely chopped and toasted hazelnuts
- ¼ cup packed brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- Pinch ground cloves
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
- ¾ cup powdered sugar
- 3 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
- 1 to 2 tablespoons milk
- In a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, stir sugar and yeast into milk to dissolve. Let stand 10 minutes until foamy.
- Add flours, butter, egg and salt; stir until a dough forms. Use dough hook attachment to knead dough on medium speed 5 minutes, adding more all-purpose flour as needed until dough pulls away from sides of bowl and is smooth, elastic and only slightly sticky; OR, knead dough by hand on a lightly floured surface 10 to 15 minutes, adding more all-purpose flour as needed until dough is smooth, elastic and only slightly sticky.
- Shape dough into a ball and place in a lightly greased bowl; turn once to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let dough rise 1 to 1½ hours until doubled.
- Punch down risen dough. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to a 15-by-9-inch rectangle.
- Brush dough with 1 tablespoon melted butter. In a small bowl, combine toasted hazelnuts, brown sugar, sugar, cinnamon and cloves. Sprinkle mixture over surface of dough, leaving a 1-inch border along edges.
- From the long end, tightly roll up dough into a log. Use a sharp knife to cut dough into 9 equal-sized rolls.
- Grease bottom and sides of an 8-inch square pan with butter or cooking spray. Place rolls, cut-side up, in prepared pan. Cover pan lightly with a towel or plastic wrap and let rolls rise 1 hour until nearly doubled.
- Heat oven to 375 degrees F. Uncover pan and bake rolls 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven and drizzle 1 tablespoon melted butter over rolls.
- To make the glaze, beat powdered sugar, cream cheese and milk into a smooth, drippy glaze. Spoon or spread glaze over warm rolls.
Disclosure: I received compensation from Red Star Yeast for recipe development purposes. All opinions are my own.