I have something to really tempt you with today. Fresh hot cinnamon rolls warm from the oven slathered with rich cream cheese icing. Ahhh…. Who can resist that? If you’re currently on a diet, I apologize in advance. Maybe you could file this post for future reference. Or maybe you could make a pan full of these, have one for yourself and share the rest with your neighbors. On second thought, maybe not. They’d be permanently camped out in your kitchen waiting for the next batch. They’re just that good.
One of the greatest pleasures of the kitchen for me is working with yeast doughs. In years past I made bread nearly every weekend. I love the whole process – the kneading and the rising. The way the dough feels in your hands and the way it grows while resting – almost like the dough is alive. There’s also something calming and restful about it. Working the dough gives your hands and arms a good workout and gives time for your mind to wander. It’s been quite a while since I worked with a yeast dough and I was really starting to miss it. I wanted to make an old tried-and-true cinnamon roll recipe that I used to bake about twice a month. It was a recipe that I found on the internet way, way back. But, sadly, I couldn’t find that recipe anywhere! Never fear though, this one from the King Arthur Flour web site is just as good, if not better, than my old standby.
For the dough:
1 cup lukewarm milk
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/3 cup butter, cut in cubes
4 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 ¾ tsp. salt
½ cup sugar
1 pkg. rapid rise yeast
For the filling:
1/3 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar, packed
3 tblsp. ground cinnamon
For the icing:
3 oz. cream cheese, softened
¼ cup butter, softened
1 ½ cups confectioner’s sugar
½ tsp. vanilla extract
Combine all the ingredients for the dough in a large mixing bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer). Stir until the mixture begins to come together (see above – it will look pretty “shaggy” at this point and that’s okay).
To knead by hand, transfer the dough to a lightly oiled work surface and knead for 5-8 minutes or until smooth. To knead in a stand mixer, attach the dough hook and knead for 4-7 minutes at medium speed.
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, turning it to grease all sides. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place for 60 minutes or until doubled in size. Note: I find that my granite countertops are too cool for dough to rise correctly so I put the bowl in the oven with the light on. It’s just cozy enough in there for the rising to take place.
Punch down the dough. Transfer to a lightly greased surface (I just sprayed a little cooking spray on my countertop) and roll into a 16×21 inch rectangle. Leaving a 1-inch border at one of the short ends, spread the dough evenly with the 1/3 cup softened butter. Sprinkle the brown sugar and cinnamon evenly over the buttered area of the dough. Be sure to carry the filling all the way out to the edges except on the one-inch border.
Starting at the opposite end from the clean one-inch border, roll the dough into a log. Pinch the end all the way across the log to seal the dough.
Cut the dough into 12 equal slices and place the buns in a lightly greased 9×13 pan. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let the buns rise for about 30 minutes or until nearly doubled.
While the buns are rising, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes.
While the buns are baking, make the icing. In a small bowl, beat together the cream cheese, butter, sugar, and vanilla.
When the buns are golden brown, remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes.
Spread with the icing.
Other cinnamon roll recipes from around the internet:
- Steamy Kitchen’s No-Knead Sticky Pecan Caramel Cinnamon Rolls
- Overnight Cinnamon Rolls from Pink of Perfection
- Swedish Cinnamon Buns from Anne’s Food
- Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Icing from gastronomy
- The whole list of cinnamon rolls from King Arthur Flour