When it comes to breakfast during the colder period of the year, nothing beats fresh, pillowy rolls first thing in the morning. With a cup of tea, or maybe a glass of cold milk. These aren't the quickest rolls you will ever make, they do require nearly two hours of rising and baking before you can enjoy them, but they are worth the wait.
Fluffy dough, sweet jam and a dash of toasted coconut make for a wonderful treat. Maybe even a Christmas morning meal. I have left the choice of jam up to you, although I recommend using a jam that is not overly sweet. I used my homemade apricot-bourbon jam, it paired very well with the coconut.
For the dough
350 grams plain flour
150 ml warm whole milk
100 ml warm water
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons dried yeast
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon oil
For the filling
150 grams jam (orange, apricot, plum)
2 tablespoons desiccated coconut
1 teaspoon orange zest
½ teaspoon cinnamon
To make the dough, sift the flour twice, add the yeast and sugar and whisk very well. Whisk together the hot water with the milk and vanilla in a small bowl. Make a centre in the middle of the flour and pour in the wet ingredients. Start mixing with a wooden spoon until the dough comes together, then transfer it to a floured surface and continue to knead with your hands for about 5 minutes. Depending on the flour, you may need to add a bit more flour as you knead. When the dough is smooth and elastic, transfer it to a large bowl, add a tablespoon of oil and knead it in. Keep kneading until the dough absorbs all for the oil. Cover it with a kitchen towel and let it rise until doubled in size, about an hour.
When the dough has risen, knead it for a few minutes on a floured surface and let it rest for about 5 minutes before rolling it out. Flour the surface well, place the dough in the centre of the surface and roll it out to a large rectangle (30x30 cm; 12x12"). Heat up the jam slightly to make it easier to spread. Add the orange zest and the cinnamon, mix well and brush the jam evenly over the entire dough rectangle. Sprinkle the coconut over the jam and carefully roll up the dough. Roll it up tightly and cut it into 12 pieces with a very sharp knife. Use a gentle sawing motion for best results. Place the rolls on a baking sheet lined with baking paper and let them rise for 30 minutes. Bake them in a preheated oven, at 190˚C (375˚F) for about 15 minutes. Let them cool slightly and serve. Yields 6 servings.