About This Kolachi Roll Recipe
What is a Kolachi roll? Kolachi rolls originated in Eastern Europe but were brought to the United States by Czech immigrants in the 19th century. The traditional recipe is made with a sweet yeast dough filled with different ingredients such as cheese, nuts, fruit, jam, or sausage.
The word “kolachi” actually comes from the Czech word for “roll” (kola).
Kolachi rolls come in many shapes and sizes, but they all have one thing in common — they taste amazing! Whether you opt for a sweet roll filled with nuts or raspberry jam or a savory roll filled with sausage and cheese, these treats always hit the spot.
What makes them so special is their combination of soft dough and flavorful filling. Plus, kolachi rolls can be eaten on the go as an easy breakfast or snack option.
Food has a way of uniting people, and there’s nothing quite like the kolachi roll. This family specialty has been passed down through the ages, enjoyed religiously at every festivity with just as much love and enthusiasm as it was served a hundred years ago. Made with simple ingredients like milk, butter, sugar, and flour, this dessert offers more than just a sweet aftertaste — it carries my family history in its recipe.
The best part? This simple yet delicious recipe is surprisingly easy to make and doesn’t require any complex ingredients or techniques! All we need to do is prepare an enriched yeast dough, roll it up with walnuts and cinnamon sugar, and then bake until lightly golden. You’ll be amazed at how tasty they turn out!
If you haven’t yet tried a kolachi roll, you should definitely give this recipe a go!
What You Need for This Kolachi Roll Recipe
- Flour: I have used plain/all-purpose flour.
- Milk: When it comes to baking, I’m all about going the extra mile for that rich flavor. That’s why I use whole milk instead of low-fat — it just makes the dough so much richer and more flavorful!
- Butter: I like to use unsalted butter so that I can control the salt quantity.
- Egg: Make sure the egg is at room temperature so that it blends easier with the other ingredients.
- Yeast: I like to use instant yeast because it can be added straight into the bowl with the other ingredients and doesn’t need to be rehydrated before using it in the recipe.
- Sugar: I have used granulated white sugar.
- Walnuts: Walnuts have a unique taste, and they add a nutty, earthy flavor to these rolls.
- Cinnamon: It has been a beloved spice for centuries and provides an aromatic sweetness that can be found in many popular treats from around the world, including in this kolachi roll. Although it has a strong presence that is difficult to miss, its subtle sweetness will melt on your tongue and leave you craving yet another delightful bite.
- Instant Yeast: It can be replaced with active yeast. The difference between instant and active yeast is that instant yeast has smaller granules and can be added directly to the recipe combined with the dry ingredients. If you’re using active yeast, make sure to rehydrate it in warm water before using it in the recipe.
- Butter: I have used unsalted butter, but you can also use salted butter instead — just skip the addition of salt.
Can I use bread flour instead of plain/all-purpose flour?
The original recipe uses all-purpose flour, but if you have bread flour on hand, you can use it, too. The plain/all-purpose flour makes a tender kolachi, while the bread flour adds a bit of chew and structure to the loaves. I would not recommend using only bread flour, though, because the kolachi roll will be too chewy.
How can I store these kolachi rolls?
Wrap the cooled kolachi rolls in cling wrap, and store them in an airtight container for several days at room temperature.
Originating from Eastern Europe, the Kolachi roll is made with a rich dough that envelops a walnut mixture spiced with just a hint of cinnamon. Serve with a hot cup of coffee or tea for a truly delicious treat!
Yield: 2 rolls
For the dough:
For the filling:
For brushing on top:
How To Make Kolachi Roll Step By Step
Heat the milk in a small saucepan until it is slightly warm but not hot, then remove it from the heat, and set aside.
Combine the water, lukewarm milk, butter, egg, sugar, and yeast in a large bowl.
Add most of the flour and the pinch of salt, and mix with a wooden spoon until clumpy.
Add most of the remaining flour and knead until the dough clears from the bowl’s sides.
Turn out the dough onto a flat surface that’s lightly floured and knead it until smooth, about 7 to 10 minutes.
Lightly grease another bowl and place the dough in it. Then, cover it with a loose cling wrap and a kitchen towel, place it in a warm place, and let the dough rise for about 1 to 2 hours or until doubled in size.
To make the filling, combine the finely chopped walnuts, sugar, and cinnamon and set aside.
Line one baking tray with parchment paper.
Punch the dough to get rid of any gas, then divide it into two equal parts.
Take one part and roll it with the rolling pin into a rectangle about 0.5 centimeters (0.2 inches) thick, using a handful of extra flour to keep it from sticking if needed.
Brush the rectangle with melted butter and cover it with half of the filling, leaving a little space at the edges.
Roll the dough lengthwise and pinch the seams closed. Place it on the prepared baking sheet seam side down. Repeat with the remaining half.
Cover the two rolls loosely with cling wrap and a kitchen towel, and let them rise for one hour.
Preheat the oven to 180℃/350℉.
For a shiny crust, mix the milk with the egg yolk and brush the top of the loaves, then place them in the oven and bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until the tops are lightly browned. Let them cool completely before slicing, and enjoy!
- It is essential to use warm milk and water but make sure they are not hot, or they will kill the yeast.
- I have kneaded the dough manually, but you can also use a stand mixer with a dough hook if you want and knead for 5 to 7 minutes.
- If you have whole walnuts, just pulse them in a food processor until they are finely chopped.
- If the loaves are browning too quickly in the oven, you can cover them with some aluminum foil.