Tara on Nov 25th 2008

Tara has made several appearances on the Better Nashville program. 

The following is her first appearance.  It originally aired in the Spring of 2008.  And then again on August 26, 2009)

In May of 2008 Tara got a call from a friend of ours whose daughter is a producer for the Better Nashville program which airs on channel 4. She was asked if she would like to prepare some Mother’s Day recipes for the program. Oh…and they would be there the next day! Well, Tara was helping the kids with a homeschool project in the kitchen which was a mess. There was dirt on the counter top (from the snails our youngest had brought inside), and dishes in the sink. She called me to see what I thought. I said definitely to do it. We all pitched in and helped clean the kitchen. Jennifer Herron, Kacy Haggerty, the producer and a cameraman arrived and they made her famous cinnamon rolls.   Here’s the video and recipe:
Better Cinnamon Rolls Part 1:

Better Cinnamon Rolls Part 2:


In large pot add:

  • 1 quart whole milk (4 cups)
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup sugar

Clip a candy thermometer to pan and into milk mixture. Turn on medium heat and stir frequently. You want the temp to be between 105 and 115 degrees. Turn off heat when liquid is between this range and sprinkle 2 packages fast rising active dry yeast over the top of the mixture. Let it set a couple of min’s and then whisk the yeast to mix it into the liquid.

Add 8 cups plain bread flour. Work flour into liquid using a wooden spoon. Keep dough in pot and place in a warm (80degrees) place. I like to turn on my warming drawer for a couple of min’s and then turn it off when I place the dough in there. It also works well to put dough in an oven with the light on.

Let dough rise until doubles in size. This may take about an hour. I have also left this dough covered overnight and it was ready to roll out the next morning.

Then add 1 more cup flour to the dough along with 1 Tablespoon salt, 2 heaping teaspoons of baking powder, and 1 teaspoon baking soda. Work all this into the dough. Turn onto floured surface and knead for a couple of minutes. Instead of forming a ball with the dough, form a rectangular loaf. Begin rolling dough into a rectangle that is about 10” wide and about 3 feet long and around ¼ inch thick.

Cover rolled dough with soft butter – I use around 1 ½- 2 sticks. Cover with brown sugar (2 cups) and generously sprinkle with cinnamon.

Begin on the longer edge away from you and start rolling the dough towards yourself until you have completely rolled the dough into a log.

Use any remaining melted butter to brush your pans. I use 4 disposable 10” aluminum pans. This way you can cover and give as gifts during the holidays. Otherwise you are going to need at least 2, 9×13 pans for all this dough! Maybe more pans.

Cut dough into 1” thick slices using a serrated bread knife.

I like to sprinkle chopped pecans on top of some rolls and let them get toasty in the oven. You could also sprinkle the pecans on the sugar/cinnamon before you roll up the dough.

Continue cutting and placing sliced rolls into pans.

Put in center rack of preheated 350 degree oven. I cook mine about 20 min’s. You don’t want to get them too brown, but they need to cook long enough to be done in the middle.

While rolls are cooking:

  • Pour a 2 pound bag of powdered sugar in large bowl.
  • Cream in 1 stick soft butter
  • Add ¼ cup milk or cream
  • Add ½ cup strong coffee
  • Add 1 t maple flavor
  • Add 1 t vanilla
  • Beat with mixer until smooth.
  • Pour over rolls while right from oven.


Use ¾ cup Orange Juice in place of milk and coffee

Use almond flavor instead of maple.


No Responses to “TARA on BETTER NASHVILLE”

  1. William Lamberton 30 Mar 2009 at 7:22 am 1

    Hey Tara!

    I recently posted a video on YouTube showing how slap your own pizza. I added it so that I could embed it into our blog with my pizza dough recipe, but when I viewed it on YouTube’s site, I noticed your videos in the “Related Videos” box. We were all so excited to sit and watch this segment! If you are interested in trying my pizza dough, I’d love to hear what you think about it. Do you have an suggestions to make it better?



  2. Taraon 30 Mar 2009 at 10:29 am 2

    Hey William. That’s pretty cool that you have your own blog and are making videos. We hope to add those soon here. The best tip I have learned about any yeast dough is to measure the temperature of your water before you add the yeast. It must be 105-115 degrees. Any less and the yeast won’t be able to carry on it’s chemical reaction. Any more heat will kill the yeast before it can activate. One must be patient with dough and give it time to rise in a warm place.

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