I love two things: Cinnamon Rolls and Blueberry Coffee Cake.
For as long as I can remember, my mother has baked blueberry coffee cakes for every occasion. Her cake is a dense sour cream cake dotted with LOTS of blueberries with a cinnamon/brown sugar layer running through the middle of the cake with another layer on top.
These rolls replace the dense cake with a light, yeast dough — but the same filling and blueberries are swirled through the rolls and they’re topped with a streusel — even more delicious cinnamon and sugar.
When my father first tasted these he told me they weren’t cinnamon rolls — they were so much better than cinnamon rolls! These are really delicious.
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1 1/2 tsp dry active yeast
- 6 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 15 ounces / 425 grams all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 ounces / 56 grams butter, softened (1/4 cup)
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)
- 1 1/4 ounce / 35 gram AP flour (1/4 cup)
- 1 1/2 Tbsp ground cinnamon
- 2 ounces / 56 grams butter, melted (1/4 cup)
- 9 ounces / 255 grams blueberries, fresh or frozen (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar (light or dark)
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3 3/4 ounces / 105 grams AP flour (3/4 cup)
- 2 ounces / 56 gram butter, softened (1/4 cup)
For the dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the water, yeast, 1 Tbsp of the sugar and 1/4 cup of the flour. Mix together with a fork and let sit for 5-7 minutes or until it starts to bubble and froth. Add the remaining flour and sugar and the salt and combine with a dough hook on low. Add the eggs and vanilla and and mix until everything comes together then add the softened butter and mix on medium-low until all of the butter is incorporated.
Turn the mixer up to medium-high and continue kneading until the dough forms a smooth ball – if the dough rides up on the dough hook midway, stop the machine and push the dough off of the hook. The kneading will take about 8 minutes. Once the dough is a smooth ball place in a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside to rise for approximately 60 minutes, or until the dough has doubled in size.
For the filling: While the dough rises, use a spoon to mix all of the filling ingredients (except for the blueberries) in a mixing bowl. Set aside.
Forming the rolls: When the dough has doubled, turn it out onto a work surface and roll into a large rectangle, 18″ x 14″ or about the size of a cookie sheet. Use the spoon or a spatula to spread the filling evenly over the dough then sprinkle the blueberries over the filling.
Starting with the dough closest to the edge if the counter, roll up the dough, forming a long log. Cut the log in half and then cut each half into 6 pieces. Butter or oil a baking dish (I used an 8″ × 12″ dish) and place the rolls in the dish, spacing them out evenly. Cover with plastic and set them aside to rise another 30 minutes. If you use frozen blueberries, let them rise an additional 30 minutes as the berries will slow down this rise.
While the buns rise again, preheat your oven to 350°F and prepare the streusel. Place all of the dry ingredients in a bowl and stir together with a fork. Add the butter and use the fork or your fingertips to work the butter into the dry ingredients. Set aside.
When they’re ready to bake, remove the plastic wrap and evenly sprinkled the streusel evenly over the rolls. Bake on the middle rack of the oven 20 minutes, turn and bake another 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool for at least half an hour and dive in!
These are best the day they’re baked, but on day 2 or 3 (if there are any left) zap them in the microwave for 15 seconds and they are still delicious. If they hang around longer or do get a little dry, cut them in half and toast them in your toaster oven.
Look at all those blueberries!!