The Sweet & The Savory: “Half-Pint” Pinwheel Rolls
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Pa’s name for little Laura Ingalls, remember? Yep, these rolls are small, but…and here I could write something like, “but what they lack in size they make up for in flavor” or some such nonsense, but that would make me feel silly…so I’ll go with: they’re tasty. But, you ask, “If they’re so small, what good are they?” Well, they have several things going for them: one is that the dough doesn’t require kneading; and two, you mix up the ingredients and put the dough in the refrigerator overnight where it magically develops flavor while you are happily in dreamland; three, you can fill the rolls with whatever strikes your fancy, from an herby-garlicky deal to your standard cinnamon-sugar-raisin combo; and four, they’re as cute as – little Laura Ingalls with her pigtails.
The original recipe for these diminutive rolls came from an issue of Cooking Light. I added whole wheat flour and played around with the filling – Cooking Light’s filling was thyme and olive oil – making some with different herb combinations and also the aforementioned cinnamon, sugar and raisin batch. Then I filed the recipe and forgot about it. Until I made Chocolate-Hazelnut Spread… Seemed like a match made in heaven. So – I doubled the batch and made some with an herb and nut filling (but no added oil) and some with chocolate-hazelnut spread and dried apricots. Hard not to snarf down these little half-pints. The sweet rolls make for a lovely tea break and the savory rolls enjoy being around soups, stews and salads. As they fit perfectly on a cocktail napkin, they would make great little party snacks, too.
Sweet & Savory Pinwheel Rolls
1 tsp. regular yeast
4 tbsp. warm water
2/3 cup soy milk
1 tbsp. maple sugar or agave nectar
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tbsp. egg replacer + 3 tbsp. water (whisk together until foamy, then set aside for a minute to thicken)
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup Chocolate-Hazelnut Spread
1/4 dried apricots, finely chopped
1/2 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 head garlic, roasted
1 tbsp. nutritional yeast
1 tbsp. Bragg Liquid Aminos (or soy sauce)
2 tbsp. vegetable broth (or water)
1/3 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
dash black pepper
Make the dough:
In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in the warm water and let stand for about 5 minutes. When bubbly, pour in the soy milk, the maple sugar, salt and egg replacer and whisk well.
In a smaller bowl, combine the whole wheat flour and two cups of the all-purpose flour and stir until a dough starts to form. Add more flour if too wet or more water (a little, little bit at a time) if too dry. The flour should be all worked in – no dry spots.
Transfer dough to a bowl that’s been lightly sprayed with cooking oil, cover with plastic wrap and let rest overnight. It won’t go crazy high in there, but will puff up a little.
When ready to bake, line a baking sheet with parchment paper and turn the oven on to 400F. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and divide it in half. Set aside one half and cover to keep moist. On a lightly floured surface, roll one half of the dough into a 12″ x 7″ rectangle. Spread with one of the fillings (below; if starting with the savory filling, brush the dough with water or vegetable broth before spreading on the filling). Roll up beginning with the long side – just like making cinnamon rolls. Using either a knife or a little piece of dental floss (this method prevents the rolls from flattening), cut the log into 8 portions. Now do the same with the second half of the dough.
Cover rolls and let rise for one hour.
Make the sweet filling:
Put the chocolate-hazelnut spread in a microwave-safe bowl and warm for a few seconds or until the spread is slightly warm. Spread the filling evenly over the rolled-out piece of dough and sprinkle with the chopped apricots. Roll up dough and cut as described above.
Make the savory filling:
In a small bowl, squeeze out the roasted garlic and mash until you get a nice, thick paste. Add the Bragg Liquid Aminos, vegetable broth (or water), parsley, nutritional yeast, walnuts and pepper and stir well. Spread the mixture evenly over the rolled out dough, roll and cut as described above.
After the rolls have risen, put them in the oven and immediately reduce the baking temperature to 375F. Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown. Serve warm – or let cool completely on wire racks, wrap tightly and store in the freezer.