Are you excited? Have I piqued your interest? Hmm...that's cool. Now let's talk cinnamon rolls. That is definitely one good type of bun that comes out of an oven. Hot, gooey with frosting, everyone loves a cinnamon roll! Would I make them again? I'm not sure. Here's why...
I've had this Smitten Kitchen recipe for Cinnamon Rolls for so long. Seriously. Probably something like a year. But MAN is it time intensive! It's what really turns me off about breads and buns...all that rising time! Truth be told, I love (LOVE!) those cinnamon rolls in a can, with the little pot of icing at the bottom. It's Christmas tradition in our family to make those every year, and I have to hold myself back from eating 5! Why bother with something that takes HOURS to make?! So you may be asking, where did these go wrong?
I did everything correctly. I started my dough on Saturday morning, refridgerated it overnight, and brought it out to room temp (err...kind of...it was room temp enough...kind of...) Sunday morning before our friends in from out of town woke up. The dough rolled out beautifully. My new bread knife from my in-laws for Christmas was AMAZING. Sliced through the dough like a hot knife through butter. There's my big tip for the whole process: use a sharp knife to cut your dough into rolls.
They cooked up nicely, didn't burn, and everything worked out exactly how it should have. My husband loved them. Our friends loved them. Why didn't I love them? Well that would be the second bun in the oven I'm referring to...
This little stinker doesn't seem to like Mommy to eat very much lately! Yep...I'm pregnant! That tiny little speck in there is a 7 week old bun (who is actually about 9 weeks now). Our sweet little Bun (yes...we call it "The Bun") is due in September, and we couldn't be happier!! It's definitely been an interesting month since I've found out, and morning sickness currently has had me in it's death grip until the recent acquisition of a little miracle drug called "Zofran." I managed one bite of roll, and had to put it down. Tragedy of tragedies!! Who puts down a perfectly good cinnamon roll?! The answer is me.
So from what I gather, these rolls were delicious. It's up to you to be the judge now! Also, check out Smitten Kitchen's post for these rolls. She announced her pregnancy through these rolls, too! I figured if it worked for her, it works for me!
Cinnamon Swirl Buns with Cream Cheese Glaze
Adapted from Molly Wizenberg’s recipe in Bon Appetit, March 2008
Makes 18 buns. Note I did not say “servings”. That’s between you and your buns.
1 cup whole milk
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 1/2 cups (or more) unbleached all purpose flour, divided
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
2 1/4 teaspoons rapid-rise or instant yeast (from 1 envelope yeast)
1 teaspoon salt
Nonstick vegetable oil spray
3/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
Pinch of salt
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
For dough: Combine milk and butter in glass measuring cup. Microwave on high until butter melts and mixture is just warmed to 120°F to 130°F, about 30 to 45 seconds. Pour into bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Add 1 cup flour, sugar, egg, yeast, and salt. Beat on low speed 3 minutes, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides of bowl. Add additional 2 1/2 cups flour. Beat on low until flour is absorbed and dough is sticky, scraping down sides of bowl. If dough is very sticky, add more flour by tablespoonfuls until dough begins to form ball and pulls away from sides of bowl. Turn dough out onto lightly floured work surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if sticky, about 8 minutes. (You may also use a KitchenAid’s dough hook for this process.) Form into ball.
Lightly oil large bowl with nonstick spray. Transfer dough to bowl, turning to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap, then kitchen towel. Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until doubled in volume, about 2 hours.
For filling: Mix brown sugar, cinnamon and pinch of salt in medium bowl.
Press down dough. Transfer to floured work surface. Roll out to 15×11-inch rectangle. Spread butter over dough, leaving 1/2-inch border. Sprinkle cinnamon mixture evenly over butter. Starting at the longer side, roll dough into log, pinching gently to keep it rolled up. With seam side down, trim ends straight if they are uneven (we baked them in a ramekin, incapable of discarding such deliciousness) cut remaining dough crosswise with thin sharp knife (a good serrated worked well here) into 18 equal slices (each about 1/2 to 3/4 inch wide).
Spray two 9-inch square glass baking dishes (an 8-inch square metal pan worked just fine, too) with nonstick spray. Divide rolls between baking dishes, arranging cut side up (there will be almost no space between rolls). Cover baking dishes with plastic wrap, then kitchen towel. Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until almost doubled in volume, 40 to 45 minutes, though yours, like mine, may take longer. Don’t skimp on the double-rising time.
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 375°F. Bake rolls until tops are golden, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and invert immediately onto rack. Cool 10 minutes. Turn rolls right side up.
For glaze: Combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter, and vanilla in medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat until smooth. Spread glaze on rolls. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Note: These buns were best the day they were baked. The second day, they were on the tough side. If you anticipate wanting them over a few days, glaze them to order, heating the buns beforehand to soften them up.
Okay, me again. My other tip would be to roll the dough relatively tight. I noticed that a couple of my rolls had a decent amount of filling fall out after slicing them. I think the easy solution would be to roll the log tighter, and it shouldn't be a problem. So now you have it. Sharp knife, roll the dough tight. Now go make some buns (cinnamon or babies...whichever you prefer!)!