- 1 1/2 packages (about 3 1/4 tsp) dry yeast
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup milk (room temperature)
- 1 egg (room temperature)
- 4-5 cups sifted flour
- melted butter
- brown sugar
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 Tbs melted butter
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 2-4 Tbs milk or cream
Add the warm water to the yeast and soak 10 mins. Scald milk (remove from heat just as the bubbles start to form around the edge of the milk); pour over the shortening. Add sugar and salt and cool to tepid. Add the dissolved yeast and beaten egg. Add 4 cups flour, adding one at a time, beating after each addition. Dough should be soft yet firm enough to handle. Knead on floured board until elastic and smooth. Avoid too much flour. Turn dough into well oiled bowl. Let rise for 1 1/2 hours.
Press dough down and divide into workable size. Roll dough out into a rectangle. Slather with melted butter. Layer with a generous thick layer of brown sugar. Sprinkle on cinnamon as desired. Roll up jellyroll fashion. Using scissors or a piece of string, cut off slices about 1- 1 1/2 inches thick. Place slices in an 8 or 9 inch round greased cake pan. Place one slice in the middle and other slices around it. Press rolls down to even out and fill pan. Let rise until rolls fill the pan generously (about 1 hour).
Bake in a 350 degree oven about 15-20 mins. I don't like to preheat the oven because I think the cook better when they can gradually cook as the temperature rises. Make sure not to over bake the rolls. Pull them out just as they are starting to turn light golden brown and let them sit in the pan on a rack for a few minutes so they can continue to cook. After a few minutes of setting, remove from the pan by inverting them onto a plate and then tip over onto another plate to bring them upright again.
For the frosting: In a medium bowl, place sugar, butter and vanilla. Then stir in enough milk or cream to reach a thick, hardly-able to stir consistency. Spread over warm rolls as soon as they are placed on a plate to let the frosting melt and run into the rolls.