These cinnamon rolls are what holiday baking is all about: a rare treat that lets you play in the kitchen and create something that shows your love. This recipe takes more time and effort than any of my recipes, but it is still probably easier than clawing your way to a Cinnabon at the mall. I like to make one pan for my family and one to give away, but you can also bake all the tall rolls in one big casserole dish. My book club gave good reviews to the "potluck" sized cinnamon rolls made by cutting the rolls half as high.
Like my Good Whisk Bread, this recipe adds wheat germ to a mix of all-purpose and white whole wheat flour. You'll get the nutrition of whole wheat flour without "healthy" taste that makes some kids recoil and some relatives snort. Walnuts add crunch and raisins add sweetness and texture with a minimal amount of sugar.