You won’t believe the intense pineapple flavor of these Pineapple Sweet Rolls! Or maybe you will—I mean, they have four doses of the stuff.
These are for serious pineapple lovers only. I absolutely count myself as one and yet, somehow, these rolls were something I didn’t know I wanted.But then a grocery store display of King’s Hawaiian Sweet Rolls caught my eye and I had a craving for pineapple sweet bread. Instead of purchasing a package of rolls though, my “baker brain” took over and I went home to make a buttery, sweet pastry dough with pineapple juice.That went so well that I wrapped it around a layer of soft crushed pineapple filling…sliced it into rolls and let them rise…before baking them until golden.Then I topped them with a simple pineapple icing…and sprinkled them with sparkly, sugar-coated dried pineapple.And then I had the gall to put them on the internet in the middle of a work day so you’d have a craving, too.Sorry, not sorry.
Pineapple Sweet Rolls
makes 12 rolls
16 ounces canned crushed pineapple in juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 3/4-2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup bread flour
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 packet (2 1/4 teaspoons) instant yeast (I use Fleischmann’s Rapid Rise Yeast)
1 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
1/3 cup whole milk
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/3 cup unsweetened pineapple juice (reserved from making filling)
2 large eggs, beaten, room temperature
2 cups confectioners sugar
pinch of Kosher or sea salt
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
4-5 tablespoons unsweetened pineapple juice (reserved from making filling)
Sparkling Pineapple Garnish:
1/3 cup chopped unsweetened dried pineapple (about 1 ounce)
1 tablespoon coarse sugar (I use turbinado)
Make the filling. Set a sieve over a mixing bowl. Pour canned crushed pineapple into the sieve and use a spoon to press out excess juice. Set juice aside.
Combine pineapple, sugar, ginger, and cornstarch in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring frequently, until juices are clear and mixture thickens slightly, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in butter. Let cool to room temperature and then refrigerate until cold (about 1 hour). Filling may be made up to a day in advance.
Make the dough. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, bread flour, sugar, instant yeast, and salt. Set aside. In a small saucepan, heat whole milk and butter until they reach 115F and are hot to the touch. Stir milk mixture into dry ingredients, followed by pineapple juice and beaten eggs. Stir in remaining flour in 2 tablespoon installments, just until a smooth, soft dough forms. Dough is ready when it pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
Knead dough on a floured surface for 5-6 minutes. Form into a ball and place in an oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit for 10 minutes at room temperature.
On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into an 8×14-inch rectangle. Drop filling over the dough by the spoonful. Use an offset knife or spoon to spread filling mixture over the dough, using a 1/2-inch perimeter on all sides. Starting with the long edge furthest from your body, tightly roll filled dough toward you, smoothing any seams with your thumbs. Slice dough into 12 rolls. Place rolls close together in prepared pan. Cover the pan with plastic wrap. Place covered pan in a warm, draft-free place for 60-90 minutes, until rolls have doubled in size.
Preheat oven to 375F. Uncover rolls. Bake 25-30 minutes, tenting the pan with foil if anything begins to brown too quickly.
Let rolls cool for 10 minutes while you make the icing and garnish. In a small bowl, use a fork to whisk together confectioners sugar, salt, vanilla, and 4 tablespoons of pineapple juice. Mixture should be very thick, but pourable. Add more pineapple juice by the teaspoon, up to 3 teaspoons (aka 1 tablespoon) until desired texture is achieved.
For the garnish, toss chopped dried pineapple with coarse sugar until well-combined and sparkly.
Pour/spread icing over warm rolls. Top with garnish. Serve immediately. Leftover rolls will keep for about a day, covered at room temperature. Icing will sink in over time.