Cardamom Sweet Rolls with Maple Glaze (+ Raspberry Variation!)

*Claire’s Closet earns a small % commission on items purchased through our links, but none of the items shown were provided to me for this post. This is reblog from another blog of mine.

Fresh from the oven, ready to be iced! (pic shows a half-batch; you’d normally use a 9×12 pan)
Finished product – perfection!!!
Mmmmmm, cardamom.

If you’re not Swedish yourself, you might not know it by name.  Even so though, you’d probably associate the taste with Christmas (or winter) if you had a slice of cardamom bread.  It’s a spice made from the seed pods of various plants in the ginger family – and it’s a big time staple in Scandinavian baking.

Every Christmas my (Swedish – but like, 3rd generation) MIL bakes what must amount to 20 loaves of cardamom “coffee” bread, and my husband’s gigantic family eats it for days on end – sometimes toasted with butter and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar, other times topped with a slice of jarlsburg cheese.  If you’re up for a major undertaking, I blogged her recipe before here.  But stay awhile, because these little rolls are much easier to make – and they’re soft and moist and gooey.  They pack a delicious burst of cardamom and they are simply to die for when you slather them with maple-coffee icing.

The dough recipe is a real gem; it makes exactly enough for a 9 x 13 pan of about 12 rolls, and it’s easy to make and easy to work with.  I now use it for our Citrus Sweet Rolls… it’s SO easy to whip up, I made five different batches of rolls last week so that I could experiment with different fillings and icings.  This one and the Citrus Sweet Rolls were the winners, but don’t miss the raspberry variation (below) – also SO good.

For the dough:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 1/4 tsp instant yeast
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs, lightly whisked


For the filling:

  • 1 stick butter
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • Smattering of cinnamon (1/2 – 1 tbsp)
  • 3/4 tsp ground cardamom


For the icing:

  • 2 cups confectioners (powdered) sugar
  • 3 tbsp melted butter

Add in drizzles the following to taste, and to desired thickness/consistency

  • cream or milk
  • maple syrup
  • coffee
  • extra cardamom (optional)

Here’s a pic of the instant yeast I used.  We do NOT have a bread machine.

Place the flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in a mixing bowl (1tsp cardamom too if you’re adding it).  Melt the butter in a saucepan and add the buttermilk – this should bring it to a little warmer than room temp (too hot will kill the yeast), swish it around in the pan to mix it, then add it to the bowl of dry ingredients.  Lightly whisk the eggs – just use the same pan you used for the butter/milk mixture, and add those too.  Mix in mixer a little until it comes together – use a dough hook attachment if you have one – then knead with your hands for about 7 minutes.  If you do this on a baking mat you should not need to add ANY extra flour or make ANY mess (see pic below!!).  

Place in a lightly greased or oiled bowl and flip it over so the top of the dough is also greased.  Cover (I use a wet dishcloth for moisture, you can also use plastic wrap) and let rise in a warm place (I turn my oven on and off briefly so that the oven is slightly warm) for 2 hrs or until doubled.

I can’t say enough about these baking mats (and they’re cheap too!).  It is practically miraculous how the dough does not stick to them at all, even without flouring them.  This pic shows a side-by-side comparison of what happened when I kneaded the (very moist) dough on the countertop versus the mat – you can see how it stuck to the countertop but not at all anywhere on the mat.  You’d be fine without one, but you’d have to add flour.


While dough rises, prepare the filling.  Simply mix everything together.  Then grease or butter a 9 x 12 inch baking pan (just the standard size; in the pics here I split the batch in two, and used two smaller pans).

Punch dough down, and again turn it out on lightly floured surface or baking mat.  Roll until it’s about 18 x 12″ (doesn’t have to be perfect).  Examine the filling – if it’s pretty soft, just spread it evenly all over.  You *may* want to stick it in the microwave briefly, just to soften it for spreading, if it’s not too soft.  

Roll up, starting at one of the longer (18″) sides.  You can definitely pull and stretch the dough as you go, if you prefer thinner roll “walls” and more of them.  Once rolled up, slice it into about 12 slices (so, 1.5 inches each to make 18 inches) – doesn’t have to be perfect!!  By the way, I’m told unwaxed floss is great for the slicing, but I use this dough cutter by OXO – it’s cheap and it’s also really handy for scraping dough or flour off surfaces and into the trash (you won’t need it for that though, if you have the baking mats!).  Place the slices as evenly as you can in the prepared baking dish.  At this point, you can cover and refrigerate overnight if you prefer!

In this batch, I used half the dough for regular rolls, and half for the raspberry variation) *****See that piece of dough at the top that goes beyond the mat?  It stuck to the countertop, but NOT to the mat!!!

Risen and ready to bake! (half-batch)

Cover (I used the same moist dishcloth but you could use plastic wrap) and then let rise again, in a warm place, for about an hour, until rolls are all touching each other and appear to be the proper size for eating.  If you refrigerated overnight, you likely need to let them rise an extra 30 minutes or so.  Then bake at 375 for 15 minutes, or until lightly golden on top.  Do not overcook!!!!  Or undercook.  It’s worth it to test a roll with a knife, you can just eat that one later.  While it cooks and cools a bit, prepare the glaze.  Just add everything in and whisk it up OR mix it in the mixer!

Fresh from the oven, ready to ice! (half-batch)

Cover with the glaze – I actually only use about half the glaze recipe, and I drizzle it, because I don’t like a lot of icing.  I save the other half and make more rolls eventually; it keeps really well.  But if you’re an icing lover, feel free to slather it all on!  Serve.  Heavenly!!!!

It simply doesn’t get better than this!!!!


Raspberry Filling Variation:  For a fresh raspberry edge, add to the above filling recipe 2 tbsp of raspberry preserves (I used raspberry-apricot by Bonne Maman) and the zest of one lemon.  Then rip some fresh raspberries and set on top of the filling before rolling.  

Raspberry filling variation – easy! (half-batch)
Risen and ready to bake! (half batch)
Fresh from the oven and ready to ice! (half batch)
Another option – Here I added apricot jam to the filling and reduced the sugar by 1/4 cup)
 

Holiday Cheer – Our Advent Lineup!

*Claire’s Closet earns a small % commission on items purchased through our links, but none of the items shown were provided to me for this post.

December is ON at the Murakamis!  Here’s what we’ve been up to…

We kicked off Advent with the calendar my children cherish from Pottery Barn Kids.  I bought ours long, long ago – back when my eldest was barely 12 months old; this has been a lifelong dream of mine.  And it hasn’t disappointed – when I asked my kids what they were most excited for this Christmas, they said their advent calendars.  While you can of course do little candies or treats, you can also throw in activities (“Make Christmas Cookies!” “Do One Nice Thing For A Neighbor!”) to up the memories made.

fullsizeoutput_5a7b

BONUS: There are still some left and they’re now on clearance, so you can start late or hoard one for next year for only $30.99 – use this link and be sure to enter code JOLLY for free shipping!

NEW to our holiday speal this year are “Christmas beds” (so named by my kids), also by PBK.  Long story short, we put our house hunting on hold and I gave myself this bedding as a consolation prize.  Honestly… it’s been a pretty good one!  I am so eager to finally start making memories in a permanent home, but this bedding went a long way toward making up the fact that we have almost no space to decorate and no mantle.

fullsizeoutput_5a46

The top bed is current line (“Heritage Santa”) – use code JOLLY for 25% off and free ship. The bottom bed is a past season’s line I got off Ebay, so that my kids would each have their own thing.

fullsizeoutput_5a45

I also surprised them with Grinch pajamas (use code JOLLY for 25% off and free ship) and a new book, “Construction Site on Christmas Night.”

They LOVED it.

fullsizeoutput_5ae3

We still need to get our tree and hang our stockings, but that didn’t stop us from getting our bake on yesterday!

fullsizeoutput_5aeb

I’ve said it before, but these mats  are a TOTAL game changer for baking. The cookies practically slide off of them once baked.

fullsizeoutput_5ab1

Ours aren’t as fancy as many these days, but if you like a super soft cookie and if cream cheese icing appeals, they’re pretty perfect in their own way.  Check out that recipe here.

Whew!  And it’s only December 3rd!

  • Join our Facebook group to see all my best-find products and deals!
  • Follow me on Instagram (I’m totally new, so I’ll REALLY appreciate it)!

BODEN’s Black Friday is LIVE – top Picks!

*Claire’s Closet earns a small % commission on items purchased through our links.

Eeeeeeee you guys!  Hurry over to Boden where you get a whopping 30% off your order, plus free shipping & returns at $49, with code V4N9!

Their entire holiday line is just gorgeous this year – women’s, men’s, AND kids’!  It’s so hard to choose, but our top picks for Claire’s (actual, haha) Closet ended up being the Fair Isle Knitted Dress and the Festive Friends Sweater.  Both run true to size.

IMG_20181116_092507117

She picked the Fair Isle Knitted Dress. Those Christmas trees and snowmen did her in!

sweater2

I picked the “Festive Friends Sweater.” Every year we have a “snow day” outfit (not just for literal snow days, but any day we wake to fresh snow!) – this is perfect!

sweater1

Closeup. Sooooo dreamy!!

I recently read an article detailing “The Norwegian Secret to Enjoying a Long Winter.”  It turns out that they see winter as something to be enjoyed, rather than something to be endured.  Now… I’m not quite sure I’ll get there 100%, but I have to say that our snowy days are absolutely brighter and more fun with such sweet, cozy outfits!

I tried to get my son onboard but he’s currently Too Cool for School.  If your little guy is amenable, I’m just dyiiiiing over these two tops:

Screen Shot 2018-11-19 at 11.37.14 AM

You can check them out here. LOVE!!!!

Shop the full Boden Black Friday sale here.

If you’ve got your own real-life pics of Boden’s winter line, we’d love to see them!!!  Join the Claire’s Closet Finds Facebook group and post them as a comment on our Boden thread!  And don’t forget to follow me on Instagram!

 

TOMS Disney DEAL!!!!

Claire’s Closet earns a small % commission on purchases made through our links.

Ooooh you guys!!!! Finally a discount on the new TOMS Disney line!  And it ships and returns FREE!  Check it out here.

IMG_20181106_093731555

I ordered ours just two days ago and they came super fast – my daughter is ecstatic!!!  They match lots (look fantastic with jeans!) and the shoelaces are faintly glittery.  The pink rubber near the bottom also has a sprinkling of gold sparkles.

IMG_20181106_093234739

IMG_20181106_093451010

SO cute!!!  I love finding ‘character’ items that I still like (read:  not cheesy!) … win for her, win for me.  Again you can pick these up here, marked down and with FREE Nordstrom shipping and returns!  Drop us a line if you grab some – join our Facebook group and chime in on the post!  And be sure to follow me on Instagram!

My Top Rec for Holiday Cards – Minted!

For sigh!  Does anyone else suffer from holiday card obsession?!   While many these days consider holiday cards a thing of the past, oh my goodness, I could not imagine a heartwarming holiday season without them!  Every year I slave over our outfits, our pictures, and then finally… our cards.  When cards from friends and family arrive in the mail, I wait ’til the kids are in bed and I open and read a batch with a cup of hot cocoa (for real!  I know… but it’s also a good excuse for hot cocoa!).

Having been at this for years now, I’ve concluded that Minted really does have the edge, even over Tiny Prints (and yes… their prices do reflect that).  Their foil pressed cards in particular are utterly swoon-worthy.

IMG_20181101_121810028

Discovered Minted in 2014 (bottom L).  Haven’t looked back in 4 years!

Another thing I love about Minted is that they almost always offer free recipient addressing (at least on your first order) – once I’d done our first year, all our addresses were forevermore stored in my Minted account and it saves me literally hours of work (and a sore hand) every year.  When people move, I just update their entry on my Minted account – I don’t even use an address book anymore.

If you’re with me on this, now is the time to start designing your card so that you’re ready to pounce when the sales roll in.  Currently you can get 15% off your order with code JOY18 (expires 11/5) and free ship with FS100 – that’s is actually pretty good; I watched like a hawk last year and the ONLY sale I saw that beat this was for 20% instead of 15% and I don’t recall if there was also a free ship code.

IF YOU’RE NEW, be *SURE* to sign up through a referral link – you’ll get a whopping $25 off your order and YES, that $25 will stack with sales codes!  My referral link:  https://www.minted.com/referral/landing/6o6mb9.  If you’re NOT new, click here for the main site and get cracking!  Have any finished product pics?  I’d love to see them, join my Facebook group and add them to our Minted thread!  Happy Holiday prep everyone!!

Claire’s Closet earns a small % commission on purchases made through our links, at no cost to you!

Fave Find Lately – Science Tee!

Just a super quick post on an awesome find!  My scientist friend found this one and it’s *so* cute and a great price!  With a fabulous girl power message!

target tee

SO cute!

Just a hint of glitter because – why not?!  You can have glitter *and* science these days (at long last)!  The “experiment” shows that if you start with intellect (and apparently distill it) and then add courage, goals, belief heart, strength, and honor, you’ll get to girl power.  Sounds like a plan to me! And for $7.00, sounds like a great grab (free ship at $35 or with red card).  Shop it here!

Claire’s Closet receives a small % commission on purchases made through our links.

Dark Chocolate PB Cup Cookies – My Fave!

b1

O.  M.  G.

When a recipe gets five full stars from over 6k reviews on allrecipes.com, you *know* it’s a keeper.  I didn’t alter much here but the change I made is, in my humble, dark-chocolate obsessed opinion, pretty significant.  If you swap out the standard Reese’s cups for Trader Joe’s dark chocolate version, your final product will be ever-more intense and you’ll spend a fraction of the time unwrapping.  I also skip the whole “mix the dry stuff separate first” – is that ever really necessary??

This recipe looks tricky but it’s actually not.  It’s perfect any time but we especially love the colors for fall and winter.

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cookies

1 stick butter, room temp or softened

1/2 cup white sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup peanut butter

1 egg, beaten

1 tsp vanilla

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp baking soda

2 tbsp milk

1 3/4 cup flour

1 package Trader Joe’s dark chocolate peanut butter cups.  Minus a few you snacked on.

Unwrap your peanut butter cups.  Stick them in the freezer.  Preheat oven to 375.

Mix the butter, sugars, and peanut butter together until fluffy.  Add the egg, vanilla, salt, and baking soda.  Add the flour and milk, alternating a little if you can.

Scoop into ungreased, nonstick mini muffin tins.  Super easy if you have a cookie dough scoop – it’s just the right size if you level it off.  Bake 8 minutes.  Remove pan from oven and immediately press a peanut butter cup into each “muffin.”  Let cool until easily removable from pan (10 minutes)?  Remove from pan with fingers.  Voila.

b2

So easy!!!  No need to grease the pan!

b3

Just push the frozen pb cups gently into the freshly baked dough.

b4

Let cool slightly (5 mins) then gently lift out.

b5

Perfection.

Claire’s Closet uses affiliate links so that we can earn commission on products discussed or mentioned in our posts.

This recipe was a reblog of a post I originally wrote on another blog.

 

This is a good one, guys!

Purchases made through links in my blog generate a small % commission for Claire’s Closet – at no cost to you!

UPDATE:  Mine arrived!!!  And they are GORGEOUS!!!!!!!
fullsizeoutput_595b

I got the Lee Earrings in Silver

 

Original Post…
Guys listen up, this is actually a really good one.  Shop it here:  http://bit.ly/2Jcrhvz
Screen Shot 2018-10-19 at 10.49.54 AM
I’ve stayed a little on top of the “Pinktober” stuff because I have two friends with breast cancer right now… one is thankfully early stage with a high cure rate (she’s a group member!) but the other is a metastatic mom of two and it breaks my heart. She in particular has been really vocal about *hating* the Pinktober stuff – as she says, most of it is just gimmicks to “raise awareness” and only a tiny % – or even none at all – actually goes to help fund research, which is what actually helps. For that reason I never post Pinktober on the page. She’s also very sensitive to what % of research actually goes to metastatic cancer vs. early stage, which is a little more nebulous… my husband is a cancer researcher and it’s complicated because you need to study the pathology of early-stage tumors because they’re cleaner, but actually end-state patients are overrepresented in clinical trials because of course, early-stage patients must stick to the proven therapies while their chances are best.
ANYWAY, this one is actually good and I’m doing it for some of my own holiday gifts!!!  As you know I’m a big KS fan both because her stuff is so pretty and also because she is the real deal in terms of a female entrepreneur (check out how she built her business as a single mom!!) who employs and supports other women. So I’m actually super excited about her Breast Cancer Give-Back Suite; the line is GORGEOUS (if you love pink!) and a **full 20%** of your purchase goes to funding the KS $250,000 BCRF research grant (the Kendra Scott Award in Honor of Holley Rothell Kitchen). **ALSO** for every piece purchased, they donate a gift of jewelry and a handwritten note of encouragement to a woman undergoing cancer treatment.
Screen Shot 2018-10-19 at 11.50.58 AM.png
Finally, I love this – there’s something in there *just* for metastatic cancer families.  Each purchase of the Metastatic Breast Cancer Charm Necklace supports the Legacy Retreat through Inheritance of Hope for 20 families with a parent battling metastatic breast cancer.
Screen Shot 2018-10-19 at 11.58.18 AM

The Metastatic Breast Cancer Charm Necklace comes in gold, silver, and rose gold (shown).  To shop the full give-back suite, use this link instead.

 

So this is one Pinktober promo I feel good getting behind.  It made a few of my holiday gift choices pretty easy ❤

Tea Collection – My Top Picks and SALE!!

Tea Collection has really outdone themselves this season.  The prints are fresh and vibrant and just SO pretty, I was dying to get my hands on them!  It wasn’t easy to narrow it down, but I’ve picked a few –

GIRLS:

I have to lead off with the print getting all the buzz.  “Ocean” is simply to die for – it’s unique, it’s very “now” with its incorporation of gray as the basic, and it somehow keeps Tea’s modern edge while still screaming “Spring!!!”  Check out the Wandoo Wrap Dress in Ocean:

But for us, we just simply couldn’t overlook Han Purple and Waterslide.

Tea2

Above is the Starflower Twirl Dress, in my opinion the cutest dress for the Han Purple print.  To DIE for!  We paired it with the Pin Dot Capri Leggings.

Screen Shot 2017-03-21 at 9.53.33 AM

… and the Waterslide print.  For sigh.  We were delighted that this print is even more vibrant in real life than it is on Tea Collection’s website.  I felt this print worked best on the Wrap Neck Dress and we paired it with the Capri Leggings in “bubble gum.”

Screen Shot 2017-03-21 at 9.56.24 AM

Before I move on to boys, I would be remiss if I didn’t say something about girls’ swim.  SO much cuteness this season but our absolute favorite is the Astilbe Pink print.  We always choose the rash guard option, since it avoids sunscreen hassles protects better against the sun.  Sorry this isn’t the greatest pic but you get the idea – to DIE for!!!

Tea1

Check out all the other options for Astilbe Pink – LOVE!!!

Screen Shot 2017-03-21 at 10.14.15 AM

BOYS:

For boys this time, I found the swimwear was the highlight.  Especially because we had issues last summer with our Boden swimwear fading.  I honestly couldn’t decide which set I liked better so I got both – this way there will always be a dry one, plus, they’ll hold up better for resale next year.

Set 1 is the Shima Rash Guard with Wobbegong Swim Trunks.

NOTE:  We found the swim trunks run HUGE!  Size 1 full size down.  The rash guards are true to size.

Set 2 is the Bonzer Rash Guard with Noosa Swim Trunks.

So there you have it, my top picks for Tea’s 2017 Spring and Summer lineup.  It took me awhile to warm up to Tea but this season’s selections have me absolutely swooning.  Happy Shopping everyone, and don’t forget to join us in my Facebook group “Claire’s Closet Finds“!

__________________________

Please note that this post contains affiliate links; affiliate programs are a means for bloggers to earn revenue by using links that generate a small percentage of commission when they discuss various products.  Thank you for reading, and for supporting the blog!  

NEW brand, Novatx – SO cute and SO cheap!!!

Readers know I’m kind of a brand snob (just a little…ha).  But I recently stumbled on an unheard of brand on Amazon.  It was just SO cheap and looked SO cute, I figured it was worth a try.  And boy oh boy, I was NOT disappointed!!!

The brand is Novatx and here are some pics of our finds.

 

Claire is wearing the “Long Sleeve Girls Cotton Dress in Navy” – get this, it’s only $9.60!!!!  It would look great with jeans, but I found matching leggings at this Amazon listing.  LOVE the rainbows and flowers for spring.  There are TONS of other prints in this exact same dress, ALSO super cheap – check them all out here.  Runs true to size, but just be aware that these are too short to be dresses; these are tunic tops for sure.

Matthew’s top is currently out of stock on Amazon – so sad!  But there are several other adorable Novatx tops at great prices if you click here.  If you’re really hung up on that adorable monster with the primary color scales, there is a listing for almost the exact same shirt but it’s a different brand – click here to see it.  The brand is Fiream, and we’ve had two shirts by them that we’ve been very happy with; I would say they run slightly small.  You can check out the first Fiream shirt we got here – super cute!!  And we also got a hoodie by them; check out their hoodies by clicking here, they are ADORABLE:

I’ll leave you with a few more pics of the tunic – LOVE IT!!!

 

Oh and those ladybug shoes on the right are Zaxy – LOVE.

Screen Shot 2017-03-17 at 10.25.51 AM

Zaxy’s are made by the same parent company as Mini Melissa and Nordstrom Rack currently has several pairs, including those pictured above, for $14.97 each(!!!) Check out that sale here and be aware that they run VERY small.  A full size smaller than Mini Melissas.  

Happy shopping everyone!

_____________________________

This post contains affiliate links; affiliate programs are a means for bloggers to earn revenue by using links that generate a small percentage of commission.  Thank you for reading, and for supporting the blog!  Come chat with us more in my Facebook group, Claire’s Closet Finds.