Orange-Cinnamon Danish Rolls

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We like the Pillsbury “whomp biscuits” version of Orange Danish Rolls. Yep, the store-bought, heaven-knows-what’s-in-them version. That little can is a special treat.

I’ve tried to replicate them with various recipes from the internet, but they are usually just cinnamon rolls made orange — in other words, too bread-y to compete with the whomp can. Enter the Overnight Cherry Danish Recipe from Taste of Home. Simple to make, and the result is somewhere between bread-y and puff-pastry flaky. (Translation:  This could work.)

The rolls fresh out of the oven….

My camera died just in time to miss any photos of the process, and I didn’t think of the phone camera until the very end, so this is sort of light on photos, but some of you just want to me stop rambling and get to the recipe anyway, so……. Here are my tweaks to the recipe and the process (original is available at the link above) to make soft, fluffy orange-cinnamon Danish rolls.

And the rolls with orange icing, all yummy and warm!

Next I’ll experiment with a Tangzhong version to see if I can get them to stay softer for longer (so stay tuned!)

NOTE that the instructions look long, but it’s because I divided the parts up and was pretty thorough. This dough goes together in about 15 min at night, then about 15 minutes to roll out and shape to rise. Plan on the 45 min rise time and then the 15ish minutes baking time. Also, if you don’t have/use honey, then for the spread, you can use some softened butter spread in a thin layer over the rolled-out dough, then sprinkle with sugar and the cinnamon (I just figure this is slightly healthier with honey).

Enjoy!

Orange-Cinnamon Danish Rolls
Author: 
Recipe type: Bread
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 16 rolls
 
Adapted from a Taste of Home recipe (see link above in post) Note that prep time is 15 minutes at the start and then 15 min to prep for oven. Recipe may be doubled.
Ingredients
  • DANISH
  • 1 pkg active yeast (I use a scant Tbsp instant yeast)
  • ¼ cup warm milk (about 110-115 F)
  • 3 cups flour (all purpose unbleached, or mix with some whole grain)
  • 3 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) cold butter, cut into small cubes
  • ¾ cup warm half-and-half (I just mix cream and milk)
  • 3 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • ½ tsp orange extract
  • zest of 1 large orange (about 1 Tbsp fresh or about 1.5 tsp dried)
  • honey (to drizzle, about ½ cup, divided into two parts)
  • cinnamon (about 2 Tbsp, divided into two parts)
  • ICING:
  • 1.5 cups 10X sugar
  • 2 Tbsp butter, softened
  • ½ tsp orange extract
  • 3 Tbsp orange juice
  • 3 Tbsp cream (or milk)
  • Dash of salt
  • Zest of about ½ orange
Instructions
  1. Dissolve the yeast in warm milk. (This next part I do in my Bosch Compact mixer, but you can do by hand):
  2. In mixer bowl with flat whisk attachment (or paddle), combine flour, sugar, and salt till well distributed. Add cold butter in small cubes and mix till crumbly, about 60 seconds on medium speed. (You don't want to cream the butter; you want to keep small pieces of butter in the dough.)
  3. Add yeast mixture, egg yolks, orange zest, orange extract, and warm half-and-half and mix with paddle/flat whisk on medium speed until it is all moistened and makes a soft, sticky dough.
  4. Cover and refrigerate overnight (or for several hours).
  5. Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease two 9" cake pans (or two 9" square baking pans or one 13x9 baking dish). Remove from refrigerator and let the dough warm up a bit at room temperature for about 15 minutes.
  6. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured counter and knead a few turns to make a smoother dough. Divide into two portions. Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll each portion into a rectangle approximately 12 x whatever it spreads to at that width. (This will be roughly 6-8 inches - just don't roll too thin. You want it about ⅛-1/4 inches thick, to roll.)
  7. Pat half the honey onto each rectangle to cover the surface evenly (If it's too sticky, just get it distributed the best you can). Sprinkle 1 Tbsp cinnamon over the honey on each rectangle. Starting from a long edge, roll the dough into a spiral, encasing the honey and cinnamon. Cut each roll into 8 portions about 1½ inches wide each (I use a piece of dental floss to cut the rolls).
  8. Place 8 rolls into each pan (for round pan: one in center, surrounded by 7 evenly spaced rolls, not too close to the sides of the pan). Cover and let rise for 45 minutes.
  9. Bake rolls uncovered at 350 for 14-15 min in 9in pans or 18-20 min in 13x9 pan. Internal temperature should be 190F or slightly higher.Remove from oven and cool slightly on cooling rack while making icing.
  10. ICING:
  11. In a bowl, mix softened butter, salt, orange extract, orange zest, 10X (powdered) sugar, orange juice, and cream. Stir to mix well to a thick, spreadable consistency. Add a bit more 10X sugar or cream, as needed for correct consistently.
  12. Slather generously over still warm rolls.
  13. To reheat: Microwave one roll on HI for 10 seconds.

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