Bread-baking day again, and this time with a real challenge-  the whole goodies should be ready in the evening, to be baked the next morning. Most times only part of the dough gets night rest in my kitchen and so it took some time until an idea presented itself. General opinion is that rolls are most suited for this task, but what kind of rolls? Then, last week, two of my favourite baker-bloggers got my inspiration started- cocolate and fruit was on the menu! (take a peak here and here). And I remembered having enjoyed „Cranberry-Chocolate-Rolls“ from my favourite bakery-  they went out of production some years ago never to be seen again. And no recipe available.
So I gathered all my courage and improvised- and here they are, my rolls, dark from cocoa, red from cranberries, and sprinkled with walnuts.
Around 1pm on a foggy November day I started, logically,  with a starter, made of flour, milk and fresh yeast and let that work for about three hours.

starter dough ready to be completed

This having worked well, I went on with my imagination, completed the dough, being fascinated by its unusual colour.

dark, isn’t it?

Again it had to work nearly three hours, being folded twice in the process. Finally having risen to my satisfaction, in came the cranberries and the walnuts and 12 rolls I tried to form. My patience for this forming process is rather low….
The rolls on the baking sheet rested overnight in the pantry, where the temperature is around 11°C- and in the morning I found they were lazy, nearly no visible rising to be found. So I put them in the oven at 35°C for 45 minutes, to get them working at last, brushed them with liquid butter, made some cuts with the scissors and baked them.
Oh, what a nice aroma filled my kitchen….

The looks can surely be improved- any ideas for a wash that brings out the fine colour are welcome. Also I would have liked to sprinkle them with sugar crystals, but none were found in my pantry. So, plain they may look- but looks can deceive as we all know, the taste is really very nice, matches my memories and in this case I’m totally satisfied with my improvisational skills.

nice november breakfast

The hard facts:


100g flour (wheat, type 550)

7gr fresh yeast, dissolved in

75ml milk

let rest about three hours, or until sufficiently „bubbly“

final dough:

250 g flour (wheat, type 550)

50g chestnut flour (if not available, you may use type 550)

pinch of salt

50g sugar

60g butter (room temperature or warmer)

10g cocoa powder

1/4 tsp vanilla sugar (10% vanilla)

1/4 tsp „Lebkuchengewürz“ (what you would use for gingerbread)

4g fresh yeast, dissolved in

75 ml milk

50g dryed cranberries

40g coarsely chopped walnuts

Melted butter for brushing (as said above, suggestions for substituting this are warmly welcome)


10 Gedanken zu “Chocolate-Cranberry-Walnut-Rolls

  1. Das ist ja wohl sonnen (nebel) klar, dass ich die ausprobieren werde.
    Meine heißgeliebten Walnüsse mit Frucht und meinem liebsten Teig…

    but I think I’l try my Tangzhong Dough .

    With fluffy wishes 🙂

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    1. Hi Sybille, ich war auch in Versuchung deinen Tangzong zu testen- nur ließ sich der schlecht mit der „overnight“ Vorgabe verknüpfen, zwei Nächte erschienen mir doch übertrieben. Berichtest du? Da würde ich mich freuen
      „fluffy weekend“

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  2. thank you, Barbara, for your praise, and sharing the impatience with rolls-shaping… What little light there is in November those dark rolls just swallow. And see how your chocolate bread gave a spark to try this!

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  3. they sound wonderful, and with better lighting I am sure they also look beautiful (I understand you regarding the boredom of shaping rolls: my favorite ones ever I left unshaped, just divided the dough with a cutter and let them rise). I totally love the fact that you did not follow any recipe but just went your way, following your idea and the memory of a taste you liked. thumb up for these original and yummy buns!

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