Looking for a fabulous breakfast cinnamon roll-type item that will impress in both presentation and taste? I have your answer. When I was in high school I found this recipe somewhere. I really don’t remember where it came from. I may have even had it at someone’s house and asked for the recipe. I do remember that my first time making it, I doubled this recipe and had four Swedish tea rings on my hand. My mom suggested I take the extras to some of her friends. This became a Christmas tradition for me. Her friends would anticipate receiving these amazing rolls every Christmas. They not only taste amazing, but they are beautiful. They kind of look like a Christmas wreath, and is a perfect recipe for Christmas morning. Pair this beauty with the sausage, egg casserole I shared, and you will be satisfied. We had some friends over for breakfast this morning, and this is what we had. I gave the other one to my neighbor who was pretty excited about it.
Swedish Tea Ring (makes 2 rings)
5 1/2 cups flour (divided)
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp dry yeast
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter
2 cups milk
Inside of Rolls:
6-8 Tbsp butter
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 Tbsp cinnamon
4 Tbsp melted butter
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
3-6 Tbsp hot water
Combine 4 1/2 flour, sugar, yeast and salt in a large bowl. In a saucepan over medium heat melt and mix 1/2 cup butter and 2 cups milk. Heat until melted, stirring occasionally. Add this to dry mixture and mix well. Add 1 cups flour and knead until elastic. Cover with plastic, and let it rise until double. This can take a couple hours. Once it is doubled, you can move on to the next steps or you can refrigerate it overnight (which is what I did).
Combine together white sugar, brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.
If you refrigerated the dough, knead it 10-15 times after you take it out of the refrigerator. Divide the dough into two sections. Roll one of the dough balls out onto lightly floured surface. You want it to be a 9″x16″ rectangle. This takes a little bit of work to warm the dough up if it has been in the refrigerator. Spread 3-4 Tbsp butter on the rectangle. Sprinkle half of the cinnamon and sugar mixture onto the rectangle.
Roll up the rectangle and form it into a log. I cut the ends off to square them off a bit more and make the two end seams come together nicer. Pull at the log dough to elongate it to about 16-18″. Then, form your log into a round wheel. Keep the seam side down.
Next, it is time for the designs. There are a few things you can do.
For the one we had for breakfast, I took kitchen scissor and cut the dough almost all the way through, but left the bottom attached. Here’s another picture of that:
I then take the cut pieces and alternate them left and right all the way around the ring.
This design gives you the first picture you see on this post.
Here’s another option:
This is a Swedish tea ring that is braided. You snip from the seam toward the center, this time just cut the top layer into strips.
Next, braid the pieces.
Braid the entire roll and then tuck the braid ends under the roll.
The braided version ends up beautiful also.
I know there are other designs out there. Another thing I like to do is take the top idea but loosen it up a bunch, so it looks like the strips are layered on top of each other. I don’t know if that makes sense to you. I know there is another traditional design you can search for on the web.
After you have created your designs, let the roll sit, loosely covered with plastic wrap, for 45-60 minutes. This will give the bread a chance to expand again. After it has risen a bit, bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes. Test with a toothpick.
For glaze, mix melted butter, sugar and vanilla. Add hot water 1 Tbsp out a time until desired consistency. This make more than enough icing. I like it a bit less sweet, but I add the extra frosting on the table for those who like it sweeter. Drizzle some of the frosting on top before serving.