These rolls are amazingly delicious, easy to make, and healthier than most other sweet roll recipes you might find. They are a great way to start off the day!
Step 1: Gather the Ingredients
1 cup milk
1 stick of butter (or ½ stick of butter and ¼ cup coconut oil)
½ cup warm water
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1 tablespoon salt
5 cups all-purpose flour ( or a mixture of flours: I suggest 1 cup bread flour, 4 cups white whole wheat)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 ¼ cups chopped dried apricots
1 cup chopped almonds (or any other type of nuts)
16 large dates
2 tablespoons cinnamon
Step 2: Mix the Milk, Butter, and Eggs
Scald the milk in the microwave or in a saucepan over medium high heat. Cut the butter into half inch chunks and add it to the milk. Stir until the butter is completely melted. Add the eggs and beat until combined. While the milk is in the microwave, pour the water into the bowl of a stand mixer, and add the sugar and the yeast, and stir until dissolved. Let the yeast mixture sit until it starts to bubble.
Step 3: Combine the Two Mixtures
Add the milk mixture to the yeast mixture and stir. Add the salt and stir again.
Step 4: Finish the Dough
Add three cups of flour along with the baking powder. Mix with a dough hook and gradually add in the remaining 2 cups flour. Knead for 10 more minutes or until the dough forms a ball and is still slightly sticky. Cover and let rise for about 40 minutes (until doubled in size).
Step 5: Divide the Dough
Separate the dough into two equal parts. Leave one half in the bowl and empty the other half onto a well-floured surface.
Step 6: Add the Fillings
Roll out the dough to a 16 x 12 inch rectangle, about ⅛ of an inch thick. Evenly sprinkle half of the apricots over the dough. Do the same with half of the almonds, dates, and cinnamon. To prepare the dates, instead of chopping them, remove the pits and tear them into quarters. Make sure that if you were to draw a vertical line on the dough every 1 ½ inches, that there would be an equal amount of each ingredient in every stripe. Also, make sure to put the filling all the way out to the edges (this ensures that every roll gets an equal amount of filling).
Step 7: Roll and Cut the Rolls
Slowly roll the dough into a log from bottom to top. After completely rolling the dough into a log, cut the log into 10-11 1 ½ inch rolls.
Step 8: Repeat
Repeat steps 6 and 7 with the other half of the dough and fillings. Line a baking dish with parchment paper, and pack the rolls into the dish as close together as possible without deforming the rolls (you may need two dishes to fit all of the rolls). Cover the rolls and allow to rise for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.
Step 9: Bake the Rolls
Bake the rolls for 30-40 minutes or until they are firm to the touch on top, but not fully browned. Serve immediately.