Back in the day where I used to eat giant breakfast pastries for breakfast every morning, I would eat enormous biscuit rolls from Walmart every chance I got. Because I wasn’t much of a baker, I didn’t know exactly why they were called “biscuit rolls.” They looked like cinnamon rolls. But they were yummy.
Then I was reading my Joy of Cooking the other day and came across a recipe for Pinwheel Biscuits. I realized I was reading a description of those yummy rolls I used to be so obsessed with.
I’m not a huge fan of biscuits. But add brown sugar to anything and roll it up like a cinnamon roll, and I’ll eat it.
Well, maybe not anything. I don’t want my husband to take that as a challenge and try to serve me something repulsive, filled with brown sugar. Although I’m sure his imagination is running wild as he reads this.
Because Chris and I are big fans of breakfast suppers, I made the pinwheel biscuits after work one night and served them with scrambled eggs and bacon. I almost burned them—I’ve been having difficult with brown sugar and burning lately—but I pulled them out of the oven just in time. They were warm and gooey and had chewy edges. I love chewy edges.
The boys wouldn’t touch the rolls (they never do, because the rolls aren’t made of chocolate), so there were several left over. They froze well, and I’ve been eating the leftovers for a Sunday morning breakfast on the way to church.
This is the quickest way I’ve found to make sweet rolls. If you like biscuits and don’t have an hour and a half to make sweet rolls, this recipe will be perfect for you.
But watch the rolls carefully—brown sugar can be tricky.
Position a rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the pan to 450 degrees. Grease a large baking sheet or a 13×9-inch pan. Prepare the dough for Fluffy or Shortcake Biscuits as directed below.
Whisk together thoroughly in a large bowl:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 ½ tsp baking powder
¾ tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
5–6 tbsp cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
Cut in the butter with a pastry blender, tossing the pieces with the flour mixture to coat and separate them as you work. For classic fluffy biscuits, continue to cut the butter until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Do not allow the butter to melt or form a paste with the flour.
Add all at once:
¾ cup milk
Mix with a rubber spatula, wooden spoon, or fork just until most of the dry ingredients are moistened. With a lightly floured hand, gather the dough into a ball and knead it gently against the sides and bottom of the bowl 5 to 10 times, turning and pressing any loose pieces into the dough each time until they adhere and the bowl is fairly clean.
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface. With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll out the dough into a 10-inch square ¼ inch thick. Spread evenly with:
5 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
Sprinkle evenly over the surface:
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans (I left these out because Chris hates both)
2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
½ cup raisins
Roll the dough up fairly tightly (it will lengthen slightly as you roll). Cut crosswise into 12 equal slices, each about 1 inch wide. Place the slices, cut side down, on the baking sheet or in the pan. Bake until golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes on the baking sheet, about 14 minutes in the pan. Remove from the oven and invert onto a plate to unmold. Serve warm, sticky side up.