The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts.


browndog's picture


Here is an adaptation of an adaptation. The original recipe was featured in a bed & breakfast cookbook, adapted and published by the Boston Globe, and tweaked once again by me.

Cranberry Nut breakfast Rolls

1/4 c orange juice

1/3 c sweetened dried cranberries

1/4 c unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1 c buttermilk or 1 c water + 2 tbsp buttermilk powder

2 eggs

1/4 c granulated sugar

1/2-2/3 c marmalade

1 1/8 tsp salt

2 tsp active dry yeast

3 c unbleached all-purpose flour

1/3 c coarsely chopped roasted pecans

6 tbsp butter, softened

(This is a good place to use up some starter discard if you have it. I used 50 grams firm discard and reduced the liquid by 1/4 c initially, then added a little more during kneading to make a tacky, silky dough.)

1. Combine juice and berries in a small saucepan, bring to a boil, remove from heat and let sit 10 minutes. Drain and reserve liquid.

2.Warm your buttermilk, add yeast to proof, then combine with the melted butter, eggs, 1/4 c sugar, and salt. Stir thoroughly.

3. Add flour and knead til dough comes together. Add cranberries and nuts, continue kneading til dough is smooth and elastic.

4. Let rise til doubled. Grease two 9" cake pans. Divide dough in half. Roll one half into a 12x8 rectangle. Spread with 3 tbsp soft butter, then enough marmalade to cover in a thin, even layer. Roll up from the long side and seal seam well. Cut into 12 even slices. Place the slices cut side down, in one of the cake pans. Repeat with remaining dough. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

5. 30 minutes before bake time, remove from refrigerator and set in a warm place to rise til doubled. Set the oven at 375. If desired, drizzle 1/4 c heavy cream over each pan of rolls. (My Puritan up-bringing would not allow this.) Bake 20-30 minutes, til golden brown.


1 c powdered sugar

reserved juice

additional milk as needed

Combine, stir, and spoon over rolls. Serve warm.

Note: Not needing, for a family of three, 24 rolls to face first thing on a Saturday morning, I chose to make and bake the same day a small pan loaf with the remaining half of the dough. I spread the dough with butter and marmalade, rolled it without slicing and baked it for about 30 minutes. Lovely. The original recipe did not call for marmalade but a quarter cup of granulated sugar and half an orange's worth of zest. I found the marmalade to donate a fine bit of texture and piquancy.

And with this entry I'm pleased to be part of Bread Baking Day #2.


zainaba22's picture

 That looks delicious! Your recipe is on my list to try this week.


susanfnp's picture

Oh my goodness, those look fabulous!


zolablue's picture

Browndog, those look so lovely and delicious.  Yum.  I love the way you used marmalade in the loaf.  It's a tip I can use! 

browndog's picture

Thanks, ladies, your compliments mean a lot to me, you're such an accomplished bunch.

Zainab, I'm so impressed that you have a weekly 'to try' list! My poor list is good for years, quite literally. These cranberry rolls were from a recipe I've been clinging to for at least six months--I think I cut it out last fall. Bread Baking Day with fruit was just the motivation needed to try them out.

Zolablue, I am a marmalade fiend and I don't think I have that much company. (Ginger preserves too, oh!) In the loaf I was very sparing not from caution but only because my jar of marmalade was looking low enough to worry me, I wasn't ready to run out.

beenjamming's picture

mm those looks tasty. sweet rolls are something i've been meaning to try but just have never gotten around to, but it certainly looks rewarding. One of my favorite breakfast treats are cooks illustrated cream scones with dried cranberries, oranges zest, walnuts and white chocolate. I made some recently and it was totally strange to go back to baking non yeasted anything.  Maybe next week i can make these without leaving my bread safety net!

bluezebra's picture

And once again, your photo is beautiful! I adore cranberry bread. So I am putting this in my TDF must try soon file!

Quick question? Where do I find powdered Buttermilk? In a super market next to the powdered milk or do I need to special order it online? TIA!

Hugs and happy baking!

browndog's picture

>Beenjamming, those scones sound decadent and wonderful. I've been mucking about with sourdough so much lately that having dough ready in a couple hours seemed bizarre and like I must have screwed up somehow; I imagine your scone experience was similar.

>Bluezebra, yes, it seems most supermarkets have powdered buttermilk in the baking supplies, though I can usually find mine at the co-ops.

bluezebra's picture


zorra's picture

I would like to sit at your breakfast table!

Thank you for participating in bbd#02.

1 x umrühren bitte  -

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

I think some of my sleeping brain cells have awaken.   ...Mini Oven

holds99's picture

Good Morning Browndog,

I want to thank you for sharing your "adapted" recipe for Cranberry Nut Breakfast Rolls.  I used your recipe and made both the rolls and the loaf this past weekend and they turned out terrific. As you suggested I also used 50g of starter.  I wasn't sure whether to grate the orange rind from the orange I used for the juice (plumping the cranberries) or not so I left the zest out.  The rolls came out absolutely perfect.  Next time I think I'll finely grate the orange rind and include it in the dough and see if it enhances the flavor.  I refrigerated them overnight as your recipe calls for then the following morning I removed them from the fridge for an hour to let them come to room temperture before baking.  They rose very nicely and got excellent oven spring.  I haven't tasted the loaf yet, that happens this morning. I'm sure it will be excellent.  The texture is perfect, it reminds me a little of brioche.  Since I didn't have any orange marmalade I used some Italian lemon marmalade (which is tart) that I had in the fridge, and it worked fine.  Spreading the dough for the rolls with butter before applying the marmalade is a fine idea as it keeps the marmalade insulated from the dough during rising.  The icing, using the orange juice from the cranberries is a nice idea and lends a very distinct and delicious taste.  You've got a real winner there.  

Thanks again,



browndog's picture

Good morning! Snow Day here, I'm as happy as an 8 year-old, and I still have to go to work, but I'll snowshoe.

I love how these past adventures resurface now and then. I'm so glad you liked the recipe and did so well with it.

Your comment about the zest made me go back and check the original recipe, because it seems such a natural step to include it, but no mention was made. I'm with you, orange zest in the dough can only ever be a good thing.

Lemon marmalade, sounds wonderful! Marmalade is something I wouldn't have considered edible as a child, but somewhere along the line I learned to prefer it almost (but not quite) to the exclusion of other spreads. For Christmas my niece sent me a jar of lime marmalade. It never occured to me that citrus is citrus in the end, and why must it always be orange?

Well, your suggestions are so interesting I think it's time to whip up another batch of these myself--thanks, holds!

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

I've got all the ingrdients just sitting here including the cream. (Does anyone know what it does?)  Now's my chance to try this.  I've got roasted walnuts and cranberry jam.

Thanks, Mini O

browndog's picture

 Mini O, did you go for it? And did you try giving it a good dose of cream?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

OK, took a while to find my camera, but here we go.... Just for y'all....

 drizzle, drizzle, sploosh, dab, drizzle

I hope a good dose of cream.

 The cream turned into buttery pudding between the rolls.

Out of the oven: The cream turned into buttery pudding between the rolls.

Most of the cream filled the cracks to make moist rolls. I would recommend it. Using cream, left the browner edges very buttery tasting, naturally, cream being practically butter.

I didn't use butter but just cranberry jam in filling with a little brown sugar sprinkle. I didn't come out with 24 rolls, just 12, guess I make bigger rolls. I was afraid if I split the dough in half, some of it might sneak off. My coffee is hot and the steaming rolls are disappearing....until I choked on Browndog's frying egg comment.  Laptop endangerment that one is.  Those eggs are really lovely to behold.  

Mini O

browndog's picture

Ahem...I was wondering if anyone would actually catch that...and understand age is showing again, *sigh*

Those rolls look fabulous, and the cream looks like it really gilded  the lilies, I'd love to try it.  Maybe I can sneak it in without my conscence noticing sometime. Thanks for the pictures!

CraigFromNewcastle's picture
CraigFromNewcastle (not verified)

yummy :)

Elisabeth's picture

Does anyone know if you can make the second portion into rolls, and then freeze them?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

but make a note in the freezer bag to drizzle cream before rising & baking.   

I would freeze in a lined pan and when frozen, bag up without the pan.  :)