More pumpkin: Spiced dinner rolls.

Magazine Cuisine

It might seem excessive to serve pumpkin rolls with Harvest Pumpkin Salad. But not for me! These "Spiced Dinner Rolls," from the same issue of Victoria Magazine as the pumpkin salad, have a small amount of brown sugar as well as nutmeg and pumpkin pie spice, but they can swing sweet or savory. Savory or sweet. They work just as well sopping up bacon-flavored balsamic vinaigrette as they do smothered in butter and honey. Such versatility is handy in a bread! And pumpkin + bread = two of my favorite food experiences in one. Bonus: I've included the recipe below.

Pumpkin rolls ingredients
Just 1/4 cup of brown sugar gives these rolls the barest hint of sweetness. And of course there is the requisite canned pumpkin lending its lovely color to the kitchen on a cool autumn afternoon.

Pumpkin rolls 2
I thank the Yeast Goddess (and a sprinkling of sugar) for once again activating my expired yeast!

Pumpkin rolls proofed yeast
You'd almost think you were making a spiced pumpkin cake, what with the egg, heavy cream, sugar, nutmeg and flour.

Pumpkin rolls makins in bowl
The batter is such a pretty color. But it's very wet, so a good deal of flour must be added to get a workable dough that isn't too sticky.

Pumpkin rolls mixed together
This lovely orange-hued ball of dough has been kneaded to perfect elasticity and is ready to rise.

Pumpkin rolls dough ball
The recipe calls for rolling the dough into balls and placing each ball into the individual wells of a muffin tin. I don't have enough muffin tins to accommodate this in one baking, so I tucked about a dozen balls each into two round cake pans. The dough balls rose and puffed into each other nicely, and browned wonderfully in the oven.
Pumpkin rolls finished
What's the first thing you do with a batch of freshly baked pumpkin rolls? Split one open and let butter melt all over the warm insides! I love butter. Pumpkin + bread + butter = ORGANIC. Oh my. Well, you probably know I meant to type something else, but this is more or less an all-ages blog. (I did use organic pumpkin in this recipe.) After butter, try other toppings like apple butter, or cheddar cheese. But not at the same time. Although, wait ... apples and cheddar go well so I just might have to try them together. Any excuse to dig into those rolls! The "spice" is very subtle--they aren't overly pumpkin-pie-like. A nice complement to an autumnal meal whenever a warm (preferably buttered) roll is called for.

Pumpkin rolls apple butter

Spiced Dinner Rolls
From the September/October 2008 Victoria Magazine

Makes 24 rolls

1 cup fresh or canned pumpkin puree
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup light brown sugar
3/4 cup warm heavy cream (110 degrees F)
1 package dry active yeast
4 cups bread flour, divided
1/4 cup clarified butter
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
1 egg
Walnut Caramel Butter (see for recipe)

  • In a small bowl, combine the pumpkin puree and vanilla extract; set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, stir together the brown sugar and warm cream until sugar is dissolved; sprinkle the yeast on top, and let mixture stand for 10 minutes.
  • Add 2 cups flour, pumpkin puree mixture, butter, salt, vinegar, pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, and egg to the yeast mixture.
  • Using an electric mixer at medium speed, beat mixture until smooth. Stir in 1-1/2 cups flour to form a sticky dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until smooth and elastic, adding enough of the remaining flour to prevent the dough from sticking to hands.
  • Place the dough in a large lightly greased bowl, and turn to coat. Cover with a clean kitchen towel, and let the dough rise in a warm place, free from drafts, for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  • Coat 2 (12-cup) muffin tins with cooking spray. Punch down the dough, cut into 24 equal pieces, and shape each piece into a ball. Place each ball into a well of prepared muffin tin. Cover with the kitchen towel, and let rise 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Uncover dough, and bake for 15 minutes. Cool rolls slightly on wire racks before serving. Serve warm with Walnut Caramel Butter.