I like to sleep. Now that I’ve had children, my sleeping abilities are impressive. At one time I needed a bed and complete silence, but now I can sleep sitting up in a room full of people. And I like to sleep late, probably because I enjoy staying up late. But there are a few things that make me hop out of bed with a smile of anticipation: family birthdays, traveling, and food. Specifically, sweet rolls.
Ever since I can remember, my mother made sticky buns for Christmas morning. After making the dough, she would spread it with cinnamon filling, nestle the sliced dough into a lake of buttery stickiness, then freeze them until Christmas Eve. My brothers and I would awaken to the smell of cooking butter and brown sugar on Christmas morning and would dive into the trays of sticky buns after opening gifts. As a child, I never appreciated the amount of planning and work that went in to making a meal magically memorable. I just enjoyed it. And that’s how I know mom did it right. She let us enjoy the fruits of her labor without moaning about how long the planning and baking processes took. She included me in the preparations and made it fun and exciting. This is what I hope I am passing on to my children. The joy of lovingly planning and putting together a family holiday so that everyone can feel included and special. For our family, that means working together in the kitchen, delegating shopping and prepping tasks, and finally pulling up a chair and telling the same old stories that still elicit fresh laughter.
So what do you do when you get an undeniable craving for sweet rolls but it’s not Christmas yet? You hit the net and search for a cinnamon roll recipe of course! I like to save the sticky buns as an annual treat, so cinnamon rolls are the next best thing. There are no words to tell you how incredible my house smelled the morning I baked these Overnight Cinnamon Rolls. And I think I danced out of bed at 6 a.m. or so in order to have these ready with my coffee. Even now as I am writing this, I am lamenting that I didn’t make a batch last night. Because morning is too late for the craving. Plan ahead, then enjoy. It’s so worth it.
To encourage the timid baker out there, here are a lot of photos (click on the link above for the recipe). This dough was very easy to work with, and I followed the directions exactly, except for omitting the raisins. These rolls are not overly sweet and have a nice yeast flavor. If you like a wetter cinnamon roll, then add 1/3 cup of softened butter to the filling ingredients. I like mine light and fluffy, but I would think the butter would make a denser, richer cinnamon roll (let me know if you try this).