Thursday, November 22, 2012

Some Thanks and a Recipe I am Thankful For

Happy Thanksgiving all!  Ah, I love holidays and all the joys and excitement it brings.  Despite it being a pretty busy day, I think we all need to slow down and take a moment in our day to think about all the things we are thankful for.  My rolls are rising in the oven, so this is my perfect time.

This year has been a particularly thank-full year.  I am thankful for the lovely situation that came about and put us into our new cozy home.  I am thankful for all the little birdies outside who are currently enjoying a Thanksgiving feast from the recently refilled bird feeder.  Chickadees eat hastily, before the juncos shove them aside, finches take a bite here and there, while the nuthatches hang upside down and feast.  All movement and flitting about is temporarily disturbed when the big guns show up: Stellers Jays and Flickers scare the little ones away for a bit, but their sheer number gives them the courage to hold their own.  This lovely scene is simply topped off by the pair of hummingbirds that come daily to visit our hanging fuchsia plant.  (Sigh.)

I am also thankful for the ladies getting their feathers back.  Frannie looks better then ever, and both her and Elsa are back to their normal selves.  Also, I, as well as the chickens I assume, am thankful for the awesome chicken coop that we built this year that is impervious to large rains.  Gone are the days of coop flooding!

I am thankful that I live in a household where we both have jobs, considering the struggles that so many people are still going through in finding employment.  What we have might not be much, but it brings us satisfaction and sometimes you just have to be glad for that.

I am thankful for my Gus and Nikolai, and even Skipper for welcoming me home each day, keeping me warm while on the couch and giving me unconditional love and affection daily.  They may be a pain in the ass at times and prevent us from going on any trips, but they are my babies and I wouldn't know what to do without them. 

I am thankful for my friends and family, who I can always count on to make me laugh, keep me grounded, and who's presence will never allow me to feel the pangs of loneliness.

Finally, I am thankful for my Shawn.  I am thankful for the amazing epic day we shared called our wedding that I still look back on with excitement.  I am thankful for his "stepping up" that suddenly happened after the wedding and all the hard work he puts into our household and keeping our home feeling warm and cozy.  I am thankful for his daily dealings with my crazy and reminding me it's ok to be myself.  But most of all, I am thankful for the love that he shows me each day, I only hope that I am able to reciprocate in a way that makes him as happy as he makes me.

May we be this jolly for ever and ever.
Now back to those rolls.

This is a recipe that my family has been making for as long as I remember, and since they are SO DELICIOUS, naturally, they only get made for the Thanksgiving and Christmas feasts.  Though I would like to make them more often since they are SO DELICIOUS, they would probably lose their charm so I painfully await them each year.  I've taken them to many a Thanksgiving feast outside of our family and I get rave reviews each time.  I've heard people call them Firecracker Rolls, Orange Rolls, or just "those amazing rolls."  Seriously, you'll be thankful for this recipe.

Holiday Citrus Rolls

One large orange
1 1/2 tsp. Lemon or Orange Zest
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cardamom
1 packet yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
5+ cups bread flour
1/2 cup sugar
4 tbs. butter (plus 2 more for later)
2 eggs

First, zest the lemon or orange.  Then squeeze all the juice out of the orange into a 2 cup Pyrex measuring cup.  Add one cup of water and the butter to the juice and heat until the butter is half melted.  In a large mixing bowl, stir together a cup of flour, the yeast, the cardamom, the sugar, and the salt.  Add the warmed mixture and stir till smooth.  Then add the eggs and zest, stir until smooth again.  Now add the rest of the flour until the dough gets to kneading consistency.  Turn out onto floured surface and knead for about 10 minutes.  Place into greased bowl and let rise for about an hour or two.  (I did it overnight since I wouldn't have time to make it and bake it the next morning and it rose really well.)

After first rise, punch down and knead for another couple minutes.  Cut them into the size of your choice and shape them into balls.  Place them into a greased casserole dish or a high sided jelly roll pan about a half an inch apart and let rise again until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.  Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a dish.  Paint the tops of each roll with the butter then sprinkle with some sugar.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes or until golden.  Enjoy.  The fluffiness, the crunchy sweetness of the sugar, and the citrus/cardamom combination is to die for.  Try not to eat them all before dinner.  I've eaten two already.  You know, for poison testing.  But don't worry, I made a batch and a half so there's plenty left... as long as I don't eat them all on the ferry to our dinner destination.

I am so lucky to have so many things to be thankful for.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...