3 Another Twist on Bread Sticks

I have been making these soft, buttery bread sticks for many years and love this new shape!

I use my family favorite dinner roll recipe that makes 24 rolls.

After portioning the dough into 24 pieces, I roll each piece into an 18" long rope.

If your "rope" breaks, don't worry, pinch it back together.

Holding your "rope" with two hands, loosely fold your "rope" half and twist it.

Dip it in melted butter and place it onto a parchment or Silpat lined baking sheet.

Sprinkle with your favorite toppings.  I like to use McCormick's Salad Supreme or Johnny's Garlic Seasoning.

Bake as directed for dinner rolls as indicated in the recipe.

Shaping these bread sticks take a little bit more time and effort than these twisted bread sticks, but I think they are so pretty and elegant to serve along side a pasta or paired with a hot bowl of soup.


1 Orange Bowknot Rolls

This recipe has been around forever.  Well, as long as I've known that storebought frozen dinner rolls have existed. These orange bowknots have a crunchy, sugary/orange zest exterior.

I am discovering that my soft dinner roll recipe is a great substitute for any of the frozen dinner roll recipes.  In fact, I think this recipe is better than the frozen rolls.  Once you learn how to make these rolls, you will find endless recipes for them.  (See bottom of post for additional recipes)

Making these orange bowknots are a two step dipping process that is quite messy, but produces a wonderful, crunchy orange crust.

The rolls are shaped and dipped into melted butter.

Then they are dipped into a mixture of grated orange zest and granulated sugar.

Once baked, some of the sugary mixture stays on the roll, some puddles onto the baking sheet.  I take the excess sugar mixture, crumble it up, and use it again on my next tray of rolls. 

When I made the orange glaze to top the rolls,  I used LorAnn's Natural Orange Bakery emulsion in place of the vanilla extract....
The orange emulsion added an extra orange flavor that made these rolls extra special! You'll have to try it!

I have another orange roll recipe that uses fresh orange juice in the dough, along with freshly grated orange zest.  These rolls, like the bowknots pictured above, are drizzles with a fresh orange juice/powdered sugar glaze.

Both of these orange roll recipes are great; it depends on the texture that you want.  Do you want a crunchy exterior, or do you want to bite into a soft, melt-in-your mouth orange roll?

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Orange Bowknots
1 dinner roll recipe (24 rolls)

1 medium orange rind, grated
½ c. granulated sugar
¼ c. butter, melted

1 c. powdered sugar
1 T. butter, melted
3 T. orange juice
½ t. vanilla extract (or use 1/2 t. LorAnn's Orange Bakery Emulsion)

Make dinner roll recipe as directed and let it rise till double in bowl.  In a small bowl, mix orange rind with granulated sugar.  In a separate bowl, melt the butter.
Roll each dinner roll into a 9” rope on a lightly greased work surface.  Tie into a loose knot. Dip each roll into melted butter, and then into the sugar/rind mixture.
Place coated rolls onto lightly greased baking sheet. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and let rolls rise till double in size.

Bake rolls at 350°F for 15-20 minutes.  Remove from baking sheet and put on wire cooling rack.  Drizzle with orange glaze while still warm. 

Recipes & Shapes using the Dinner Roll recipe: 
Buttery Bread Sticks
Yummy Mummy Dogs
Magleby Copycat Dinner Rolls
Chicken Bacon Ranch Bakes 
Puffy Heart Dinner Rolls
Swirl Dinner Rolls  
Bunny Backside Dinner Rolls
4 Ways to Make Dinner Rolls Ahead
5 Favorite Dinner Roll Shapes
Cloverleaf Dinner Roll Shape 
Bread Stick Twist Shape 


6 Cook's Country Roast Beef

I don't have cable, otherwise I'd be in deep trouble watching all the cooking channels!  Fortunately for me, there is PBS and I try to catch America's Test Kitchen and their sister show, Cook's Country.

I'm always on the lookout for the perfect, tender roast beef.  Maybe it is because I grew up with the pan roasted slab of pot roast that as a child, I would spend what felt like hours of chewing....

This recipe looks simple enough, with the flavor coming from a mixture of 1/3 c. parsley,  2 T. thyme, 1 minced shallot, 1 T. Dijon mustard and 1 T. olive oil.

2 Tablespoons of this mixture is spread in to a 4 pound top sirloin roast (which I had a difficult time finding in the stores!) that I had the butcher cut almost in half, and open like a book.

The roast is "closed" with the herb mixture inside, and tied with butcher's string.  The roast is then put into the fridge for at least one hour, or up to 24 hours.

The remaining herb mixture is mixes with 4 Tablespoons of softened butter and set aside for when the roast is done.

I have found that my oven probe is essential to perfecting internal roasting temperature. If your oven does not have one, consider purchasing this one from Amazon.

The recipe calls for browning the roast in a skillet with 1 T. olive oil.  I don't remember doing that, but looking from the rest of my photos, I think I did... Browning is essential to lock in the juices, give color and flavor to the meat.

Hubby loves his meat rare, so I set the probe to turn off at 125°F, which is medium rare, 1 1/2 - 2 hours. The oven is set to 275°F for a slow, even roasting temperature.  I check the meat right out of the oven and it looks pretty good! Pyrex does not make this thermometer, however, this one looks great for the price.

Spread the butter/herb mixture onto the roast and tent with foil for 20 minutes.  This allows the juices in the roast to redistribute throughout, creating a super juicy, tender roast.

Here is the roast, 20 minutes later.  You can see that the butter has melted, leaving the herb/shallot mixture behind.  Oh, and notice the juices....yep, that's a tender roast right there!

I found this roast to be cooked to perfection!  However, I was not a big fan of the parsley/thyme mixture.  Too "herby," I guess.  I found another recipe from ATK that uses garlic, rosemary, and lemon zest, which may be more to my liking.  It uses the same method of putting the herb mixture inside the roast.

Cook's Country Roast Beef
(recipe link)



Have you ever been to the Salt Lake Home Show? 

It is typically held in the summer, but for the first time, over 300 vendors are gathering at the South Towne Expo Center to help you with any home remodeling, renovation, landscaping, etc. (Show details are at the bottom of this post)

This is the PERFECT time to go ~ winter is the time to clean out and update your home.

Did you know that there will be a couple of celebrities there???

Yes, Ty Pennington will be presenting on the Design Stage on Saturday, January 5th at 11 AM!  Everybody knows Ty....he's the guy behind Extreme Makeover: Home Edition and knows how to throw a room together!

Do you recognize this face?

This is Marla Dee of Clear and Simple ~ She is the organizing guru!  She will show you how getting organized can be simple, fun, and freeing.  She is not just about organizing space.  She organizes her time, paper, and energy.  We can learn a lot from her!

Oh, and how about this guy??

Chris Crary, Bravo TV's Top Chef will be there to give us tasty, new recipes!!  Woot!

You can also get FREE design tips from Opal Design Group.  Bring in your floor plan and you will get all the free advice you need to get started!

Okay, wanna know how to get the discount? 

The tickets are $10 at the door, but if you get them online, they are $8.  PLUS, if you put in the PROMO field these six letters...


You will get an additional $3 off!

Sweet, huh?  

Show starts Friday, January 4, 2013 2 PM - 9  PM FREE admission for Military, Fire & Police officers!
Saturday, January 5, 10 AM - 9 PM
Sunday, January 6, 11 AM - 6 PM

Salt Lake Home Show 
9575 South Sate Street
Sandy, Utah

2 Festive Fruit Plate & Dip

When I go to the store, it is easy to pick up an assortment of cut up fruit, ready to eat.  Then I glance at the price and gasp.  $15 for 2 cups of mixed cantaloupe and honeydew melon??

Yes, it is winter and fruit is not in season in Utah.  I had my family over for a holiday gathering and thought that a colorful plate of fruit would be the perfect appetizer to the main course.

This fruit plate can easily serve 30 or more people. This platter measures 15"x26".   I froze the left over fruit (blueberries, oranges, strawberries and pineapple) to use in smoothies.

My husband called the fruit dip "the best whipped cream I've ever had."  It is a combination of cream cheese, powdered sugar, granulated sugar, whipping cream and lemon juice/zest.  Add just enough pineapple juice to get the consistency you want and you will have a wonderful fruit dip to serve your guests.

Cost for this bountiful platter and dip?  $30

A much better deal than 2 cups of melon!

Fresh Fruit Plate & Dip
(4x6 printable recipe card)     (full page printable recipe)

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