Garlic Swirl Rolls

Prep time: 20 minutes + rising time (1½ hours, 25 mins)
Cook time: 30-35 minutes
Total time: about an hour
Servings: 15
Cuisine: Italian
Recipe Info

For the dough:
Cooking spray
4 to 4¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
2 T granulated sugar
1 (¼ ounce) packet active dry yeast (2¼ t)
1½ t kosher salt
1 cup warm water
¼ cup olive oil
2 large eggs
1 large egg yolk

For the filling:
3/4 cup unsalted butter
8 cloves garlic
½ bunch fresh parsley
1 ounce Parmesan cheese, finely grated (about ½ cup)
½ t kosher salt
¼ t freshly ground black pepper

Coat a 9×13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Place the sticks unsalted butter for the filling in a medium bowl and let sit at room temperature to soften while you make the dough.
Make the dough: Place 4 cups of the all-purpose flour, 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, 1 packet active dry yeast, and 1½ teaspoons kosher salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the hook attachment and whisk to combine. (Alternatively, place in a large bowl if kneading by hand.)
Place 1 cup warm water, ¼ cup olive oil, 2 large eggs, and 1 large egg yolk in a medium bowl and whisk to combine. Turn the mixer speed on to low and slowly pour in the egg mixture. Increase the speed to medium-low and knead until the dough is smooth, soft, and forms a ball, 7 to 8 minutes. If the dough is sticking to the edges of the bowl, add more flour 1 tablespoon at a time and continue mixing — you may need up to 4 tablespoons more. (If kneading by hand, stir until the dough comes together, then knead on a lightly floured work surface.)
Gently remove the dough from the bowl and coat the bowl in cooking spray. Tightly cover the bowl in plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until nearly doubled in size, about 1½ hours. Meanwhile, make the filling when the butter is softened.
Make the filling: Prep the following, adding them to the bowl of softened butter: Mince 8 garlic cloves. Finely chop ½ bunch of fresh parsley leaves (about ½ cup) and finely grate 1 ounce Parmesan cheese (about ½ cup). Add ½ teaspoon kosher salt and ¼ teaspoon black pepper and stir and smash together to combine.
When the dough is ready, punch it down and transfer onto a lightly floured work surface. Flour a rolling pin and roll the dough into a 24×10-inch rectangle (about ¼-inch thick), with a long side closer to you.
Spread half of the filling onto the dough. Starting at the long end closest to you, roll the dough up tightly into a log, using a bench scraper as needed to help release the dough from the work surface. Pinch the seam together at the top.
Position the log seam-side down. Cut crosswise into 15 pieces with a sharp knife or piece of unflavored dental floss. Arrange the cut rolls cut-side up in the baking dish, 5 across and 3 down. Loosely cover in plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for 25 minutes. Meanwhile, arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F.
Uncover and bake until puffed, golden-brown, and a toothpick or skewer inserted in several spots comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Immediately spread the remaining butter mixture over the knots and let it melt.

3 Tips for Making the Best Garlic-Swirl Rolls: Before heading into the kitchen to make these rolls, keep these tips in mind.

  1. Add extra flour if needed. If your dough feels sticky after adding 4 cups flour, don’t be afraid of adding up to 1/4 cup more. You’ll know it’s ready when the dough holds together in a tight ball shape and pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
  2. Keep an eye on the rising dough. Over-proofing the dough can make it hard to work with and cause it to collapse when baking, so make sure to set a timer so you don’t let it rise for too long. An hour-and-a-half is usually enough time for the first rise, while a quick 25 minutes is all you need for the final one.
  3. Use floss to cut the dough log into spirals. While you can use a knife to portion the dough if you don’t have floss on hand (busted!), using floss will help the spirals hold their shape instead of smashing them. Just thread the floss underneath the dough log, cross it over the top of the rolls, then pull the ends in opposite directions to create perfect slices.
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