Thursday, March 12, 2009

March Questions: Cinnamon Rolls

I read somewhere on your other blog that you make cinnamon rolls on a regular basis, would you mind sharing your recipe? There's just the two of us here, so can you freeze the dough pre-baking? Do you have a small recipe? Any suggestions about cinnamon rolls in general?

It is really sad to say that I don't have set "recipe" for cinnamon rolls. I now make cinnamon rolls using dough from the wet dough recipes from Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day. I usually use the broiche or just their Master recipe. Taking off a 1 pound chunk makes about 7 to 9 cinnamon rolls depending on how thick I slice them.

Before that book I just kind of make them with whatever dough I thought sounded good at the time or had in my freezer. I have made them with doughs for challah, brioche, oatmeal bread and just regular white bread. And again because most doughs I make using about 3 cups flour - that makes usually 7 to 9 cinnamon rolls depending on how big you make them.

I also made most doughs in my bread machine but I am sure could be mixed in a food processor with a dough hook or mixer with a dough hook. Or just old fashioned mixing with hands.

The doughs that I freeze are usually shaped in a loaf shape and then take out and let thaw and rise. And then punch down and roll out following a normal cinnamon roll directions. But actual freezing cinnamon rolls I have only done that once and I didn't have good results in thawing them, but I believe may have been other reasons then actually that they were coming from the freezer. (It could have been my yeast (that batch was at the end to jar so older yeast), it could have been where I had them rising and so on.) I don't see why it wouldn't be possible roll them up, slice them off, I would let them sit at room temp for about 20 minutes so the dough can start doing it's magic then put them on a tray to flash freeze them and then put in a ziplock to pull out what you want to make. I also freeze my cream cheese frosting as it always seems to make more then I want and then I just take it out while I bake cinnamon rolls to thaw a little to squeeze onto the cinnamon rolls after they have cooled from baking a little.

Also here on they have an article about freezing bread dough (not cinnamon roll dough but just thought it was a good resource).

Here is one recipe I have used for cinnamon rolls using my bread machine....

Cinnamon Rolls

* 3/4 cup water
* 1 egg, lightly beaten
* 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
* 3 cups all-purpose flour
* 6 tablespoons sugar
* 1/4 cup softened butter
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 2 tablespoons dry milk
* 1 1/2 teaspoons yeast

* 1/4 cup butter, melted
* 1/3 cup brown sugar mixed with 2 to 3 teaspoon cinnamon

Add ingredients according to manufacturer's suggested order and set on dough cycle. Turn onto lightly floured board. Roll out to a rectangle about 10 X 18 inches. Brush with melted butter; sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture. Starting at long end, carefully roll up; pinch seams together. Measure and cut 1-inch to 1 1/2-inch slices. Place individually in muffin tin or nestled together in round cake pan and let rise about 1 hour longer. Bake at 375 for about 15 minutes. Cool for 5 to 10 minutes and then frost with cream cheese icing.

Cream Cheese Icing
8 tbs (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup (2 oz) cream cheese
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
2-4 tbs milk or half-n-half (optional)
Mix all the ingredients except for the cream together in a medium bowl until fluffy. If it's too thick for your tastes, add some of the milk.

I made these with the master dough recipe from "Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day." It has white flecks on the caramel because I had made a pan of cinnamon rolls and used the same spatula to plate it so some cream cheese frosting got on the caramel.

Please feel free to ask a question or several for March Question Month!

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