Ahh, the cinnamon roll. Is there anything better? Buttery dough, spicy cinnamon and sweet brown sugar with a cream cheese frosting. I gain 5 pounds just thinking of them. Now, if you've ever eaten a "mall cinnamon roll", and you know to which I refer, then you will love this recipe. In all honesty, it may be BETTER than those found while browsing at American Eagle. It does take some time to make, but all good things come to those who wait. Doing so patiently is up to you.
Cinnamon Rolls (yields between 15-18 rolls, depending on size)
1 cup warm milk (between 105-115 degrees F)
1/3 cup melted butter (no margarine, that is of the devil)
1 T quick acting yeast
1/2 cup white sugar
1 t salt
4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
Preheat oven to 400 F. In a stand mixer, (I use my Kitchen Aid) with the bread hook attachment, add the warm milk, melted butter, yeast and sugar. Set on low speed and let mix for 2 minutes. Turn mixer off and let yeast activate for 10 minutes. You might see bubbling, which is good. Very good. If your milk was too hot, you'll kill the yeast and have to start over. Good rule of thumb is to have the milk the same temp as bath water. Too hot for your fingers, too hot for yeast. After yeast has bloomed, add the eggs one at a time and let mix. Sprinkle in salt and half the flour. Let the bread work for about 2 minutes and then add the rest of the flour. Let mix for a good 5 minutes. Keeping the dough in your bowl, place dough, covered with a clean kitchen towel, in a warm area of your kitchen. I place my dough on the stove while the oven is preheating. Let the dough rise for at least an hour but up to 3 hours.
While dough is rising, you can make the filling and the frosting.
1 cup brown sugar
2 1/2 T ground cinnamon, the best you can find
1/3 c melted butter
In a bowl, mix together brown sugar and cinnamon thoroughly. DO NOT add butter to it. The butter will go on the dough before the cinnamon mixture. Set aside till ready to use.
3 ounces softened cream cheese
1/4 cup softened butter (this is half a stick of butter)
1 1/2 c powdered sugar
1/2 t vanilla (no imitation vanilla)
1/8 t Kosher salt
In a large mixing bowl, cream together cream cheese and butter, til there are no lumps. If it is NOT room temp, it will be lumpy and will not cream together easily. Once creamed together, add powdered sugar, vanilla and salt. MIX ON LOWEST SPEED or you and your kitchen will be covered in sugar. Mix until all powdered sugar is well incorporated. Set aside till ready to use.
Making the rolls:
Once your dough has risen for at least an hour, pour it out onto a floured flat counter. Roll dough into a 16X12 inch rectangle. Spread the melted butter into the dough. Sprinkle the cinnamon brown sugar all over the dough, using your hand to smear it evenly to all the edges of the dough. Roll the dough into a jelly roll. Cut dough into rolls about 3/4 inch thick. Place in a buttered 9X13 inch pan, 12 rolls per pan. Place rolls back in a warm area and let rise again for at least 30 minutes. Bake at 400 degrees for 15-18 minutes, or until golden brown on the edges. Remove from oven and immediately frost with the cream cheese frosting.
They may take awhile, but they are well worth it. Let me know your thoughts!