Ah yes, another rainy weekend ahead.
Well, it might not rain the entire weekend, but we'll have enough precipitation and gray skies that you might get the urge to bake something cozy. These pistachio and dark chocolate cinnamon rolls are from "Cocoa: An Exploration of Chocolate, With Recipes" by Sue Quinn (Quadrille, $35), and they combine salty, crunchy pistachios with bitter dark chocolate and citrus peels for a surprising twist on an old favorite.
With Mother's Day on Sunday, you'll get bonus points if you bake these and share them with a mom in your life, even if it's a neighbor raising three kids and two dogs on a teacher's salary.
Pistachio, Citrus and Dark Chocolate Cinnamon Rolls
These rolls make a decadent brunch, served warm from the oven, with a pot of good strong coffee on the side.
For the dough:
1 cup whole milk
1/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus extra for greasing
3 cups (14 ounces) white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
1 3/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Vegetable oil, for coating pan
1 egg yolk, lightly beaten, for brushing
For the filling:
2/3 cups pistachios, finely chopped
1/2 cup soft dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2/3 cup (about 2 3/4 ounces) dark chocolate (between 70 to 80 percent cocoa solids), chopped
1/3 cup finely chopped citrus peels
1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
To make the dough, heat the milk in a small pan until almost boiling. Remove the pan from the heat, add the butter and stir until melted. Set aside to cool to lukewarm.
Meanwhile, in a mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk the flour, yeast and salt together. Add the whole beaten egg and then the cooled milk. Knead with a dough hook attachment for 5 minutes or turn out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead by hand for 8 to 10 minutes. The dough will be quite sticky at first but becomes smooth and elastic as you knead — add a little more flour if it’s too wet to work with.
Place the dough in a large lightly oiled bowl (it will expand considerably) and turn over to coat. Cover with a clean dish towel and set aside somewhere warm for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
While you’re waiting, mix all the filling ingredients, except the butter, together. Butter a 9-inch round loose-bottomed or springform cake tin with sides at least 2 inches high. Wrap the base in foil, as the filling sometimes melts and seeps out a little.
When the dough has risen, press down on it to let the air out and tip out onto a lightly floured work surface. Roll into a 14-inch-by-10-inch rectangle, making sure the middle is no thicker than the edges. With the long side of the dough parallel to the edge of your work surface, spread the butter evenly over the top. Sprinkle over the filling and press down on it gently. Working with the long side, carefully roll the dough into a sausage shape, like a jelly roll.
Cut into 7 equal pieces each about 2 inches long and arrange, cut-side up, in the prepared tin: place one roll in the center and the others around it, with a little space in between. Cover with a clean tea towel and set aside for 30 minutes. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
Brush the tops of the rolls with the beaten egg yolk and bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden on top. Leave in the tin for 5 minutes, then release and pull apart when cool enough to handle. These are delicious served warm but will keep well in an airtight container for a couple of days.
— From "Cocoa: An Exploration of Chocolate, With Recipes" by Sue Quinn (Quadrille, $35)