Friday, May 22, 2009

Nutty Cinnamon Rolls

Nutty Cinnamon Rolls

Dorcas Annette Walker

Motherhood is filled with stress juggling multiple tasks. Just ask any mother. Today we are bombarded with articles touting the importance of setting aside time to exercise to lower one’s heart rate and relieve stress, not to mention the flood of advertisements on a daily basis claiming that a certain machine is the best way to exercise. In my grandmother’s day a mother got plenty of physical exercise without using a tread mill or exercise machine. Weeding a large vegetable garden and flowerbeds, putting up produce for winter, washing clothes by hand, and cooking meals from scratch gave women lots of exercise.

Bread making was a known stress reducer. You could punch, pull, and slap the dough around to your heart’s content as the more the dough was kneaded the lighter the bread would be. Not only would women feel better after a session of working warm dough between her fingers, but her family got to enjoy fresh hot bread. The day would finish with satisfaction knowing that she was providing for her family’s basic necessities. Talk about an unbeatable combination. I don’t know of a nerve pill or exercise machine that can give those results. Maybe it would be smarter if women went back to making up a batch of bread each week.

Today there are zillions of recipes and methods on how to make bread varying from the old-fashion day-long bread, using frozen dough, or a bread machine. The one thing all bread recipes have in common is the guarantee of having your house filled with a heavenly aroma of baking bread and finishing with a mouth-watering culinary treat. A woman can’t go wrong making a bread product. Included within the assortments of bread recipes is a variety of rolls ranging from plain dinner rolls to elaborate dessert buns.

My Nutty Cinnamon Rolls are an easy version of the old-fashion cinnamon rolls perfect for a snack or with a brunch eaten either hot or cold. You can quickly mix up a batch of these rolls and let them rise while doing something else around the house. These Nutty Cinnamon Rolls have a soft velvety texture from using a cake mix, yet they still have the homemade yeast flavor. For a different flavor try a cream cheese or chocolate frosting. You can also substitute the nuts with dried fruit. My Nutty Cinnamon Rolls take only fifteen minutes to prepare (not counting rising or baking time) and this recipe makes two dozen cinnamon rolls.

Nutty Cinnamon Rolls

In a large bowl mix together:
4 c self-rising flour
2 pkg yeast
1 white cake mix
2 c warm water
Pour the dough out on a floured surface and knead for a couple of minutes until the dough is smooth.

Then roll and shape into a rectangle and spread on:
½ c shortening
3 c brown sugar
1 c chopped nuts (your choice)
Roll up the dough lengthwise and with a sharp knife cut into one inch pieces. Place dough rounds flat on a cooking sheet and let rise until double. Bake at 350ยบ for 25-30 minutes until golden brown. Let the rolls cool for five minutes and then frost with a vanilla flavored icing. Garnish with cinnamon!

Weekly tip: For no clean-up baking trays first line the trays with parchment or wax paper. The baked goodies won’t burn and you always end up with a clean tray!

Dorcas Annette Walker is a published author, columnist, speaker, freelance magazine writer, and photographer from Jamestown, Tennessee. Contact her at: For more recipes check out her Creative Tennessee Mountain Cookin blog at:

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