April 4, 2009
Nothing says home like the smell of hot fresh baked goods coming out of the oven (that I didn't have to bake)! TLMM's mother, Marilyn Moon ("MM"), is getting ready for Easter. That includes baking her famous nut rolls. I better hurry up and have a slice before Passover starts.
MM and TLMM's father, Jack, recently relocated to Miami from Pittsburgh. Fortunately for us, baking was almost like a competition for the women at the various congregations Jack served as a Methodist Minister for 35+ years. You should see the recipes this woman has in a fireproof lock box! They take their baking seriously, and this recipe is one of my favorites.
This recipe makes 8 nut rolls- so share them with your friends or wrap them tightly in aluminum foil and freeze them until the "churchers" as I call them come over for tea.
The day before or the morning you make the rolls, throw a bag of recipe ready walnuts into a food processor and blend until fine. You'll need these as you assemble the rolls.
9 cups flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup sugar
4 sticks softened butter
Put the above ingredients into a large bowl and mix well by hand. Break up with fingers into small pieces. Yes, with your hands. Wash them first please.
Mix 4 eggs into mixture. Add 1 cup of canned milk (not fresh). Dissolve 1 1/3 cake of yeast into 1 cup warm water; stir until dissolved. Put in mixture.
Knead with your hands. This will be sticky so put flour on your hands and fingers. Plastic bowl is best to put it in. Cover and let it rise for 45 minutes in a warm place.
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Divide dough into 3/4 pound pieces (makes about 8 pieces). Let it sit for awhile- about 10 to 15 minutes.
Knead each in hand with floured hands. Roll on floured board to 1/8 inch thick (very thin!). Keep the edges clean as you add the following ingredients on top of the dough.
Melt butter. Brush on dough generously.
Add 1/2 cup brown sugar and spread over dough.
Put 1 cup of finely chopped walnuts on that and spread over dough.
Remember the edges that you kept clean? Dip your fingers in water and spread it on the edges so it will seal. Roll the roll tightly. Wet end again if necessary to hold it together. Place edge on bottom. Put two in the pan at a time- don't bake more than two at a time or they will go together. Poke a few holes across the top with a fork to vent. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.
Let them sit for 15 minutes and then brush with melted butter.
These are so good, you can't have just one slice. I don't even like nuts in my food- but they are so finely chopped in this recipe, they aren't like nuts, they're more like textural candies.
Sure, they are a little work but if you can catch someone else in the holiday baking spirit, maybe they'll make them and share them with you. That's what I did! Seriously, MM was making them anyway- I just asked her if I could blog it. So happy Easter, Happy Passover, Happy Spring...and the eggs.