Cinnamon Rolls

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It appears as if Summer has finally arrived in North East Scotland, with the sun trying its best to shine for as long as it can before another rain cloud decides to float by…

Hot weather like we’ve been having is ideal not only for getting a tan (without paying for it) and going for an ice cream, it’s also perfect for making homemade bread! When making bread you often have to scour the house for a warm place to stuff your bowl of dough into and pray it rises in time, but when the sun is out you can leave that bowl or the windowsill, your doorstep or even its own beach-towel on the grass! Ok, maybe not that last one.

Shortly before burning myself while out in the sun yesterday I felt I should make use of the good weather and bake something, I decided I’d try my hand at Cinnamon Rolls.

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For those of you who have never tasted a cinnamon roll – like myself until yesterday – the best way to describe them is sweet, cinnamon heaven; sweet brioche-like bread, rolled up and filled with cinnamon, butter and brown sugar. Eaten warm out of the oven, there’s really very little competition for cinnamon rolls for breakfast served with some fresh fruit…and more cinnamon rolls.

I know these aren’t exactly a “Summer” bake but there is no bad time to eat one of these. Curled up on the couch catching up with Game of Thrones like I did this morning, however, is a perfect time.

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Firstly, sift your two flours into a large bowl. Pour your sugar and salt into one side of the bowl and your packet of yeast into the other – salt can sometimes stop the yeast from working. Mix everything together.

Meanwhile, heat your butter, milk and vanilla in a small pan until all melted together (but don’t let it simmer). Pour this into your dry ingredients.

Mix well to form a stiff dough before adding your beaten egg to loosen it. It should be a fairly wet dough.

Once all mixed together nicely, use either your hands or a food mixer fitted with a dough hook to knead the dough as best you can for 10 minutes or so until the dough is slightly less sticky and it becomes nice and stretchy.

Tip the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and cover with some clingfilm. Tuck this away somewhere warm or place it out in the warm sun until the dough has risen noticeably.

After the dough has risen, tip it out onto a floured surface, at this point the dough should be quite wet so make sure your hands are coated in flour too. You might need to work the dough a little with your floured hands to make it behave a little better!

Use a rolling pin to roll out your dough into a rectangle no thinner than a centimetre. The rectangle should be landscape with a long edge closest to you. Once rolled out, its time to make your filling.

Lightly cover the whole rectangle of dough with a nice lick of butter.

Mix your sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle them evenly all over the dough, throw over your raisins and get ready to roll!

Grabbing the two corners of the long edge furthest away from you, slowly and tightly roll your dough up towards you into a  sausage. Try not to squeeze out any of the filling!

Before slicing the rolls, prepare a square 20cm tin by greasing/lining it.

Cut the sausage into 9 fairly equal slices and fit the rolls into your tin swirl-side up. These will need to rest in a warm place to rise for another 45 minutes or so.

Meanwhile, preheat your oven and prepare the glaze for the rolls.

In a small bowl, combine all your ingredients and mix them until smooth. Once your rolls have risen again, use a brush to glaze the top of your rolls with the syrup mixture. At this point you can also sprinkle over some extra brown sugar if you like!

Now just pop the rolls into the oven and bake for until risen further and a lovely golden brown colour. Don’t worry that they’re all squashed and stuck together, they’re supposed to do this, it makes it even more fun to tear into them once they’re ready.

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Once baked, these will need to cool on a wire rack. I highly recommend eating these while they’re still all warm and sticky, but be sure not to eat one straight away because your poor little burnt tongue wouldn’t thank you for it!

Serve the rolls as they are or with a dusting of icing sugar, they make an absolutely delicious breakfast! The raisins plump up with all the melted sweet butter and all the sugar on top gets beautifully caramelised in the oven, there really is little better.

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For those of you – like me – who fancy an even sweeter treat, try replacing the cinnamon filling with Nutella and throwing in some chocolate chips. I’ve yet to try it myself, but I can only assume it would be utterly fantastic!

Cinnamon Rolls

Yield: 8-10

Cinnamon Rolls

Nothing beats a warm, sticky cinnamon roll!

Ingredients

    For the rolls:
  • 215g plain flour (plus extra for dusting)
  • 215g strong white flour
  • 75g caster sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 sachet fast-action dried yeast
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 200ml milk (buttermilk is even better!)
  • 75g butter/margarine
  • 1 egg (beaten)
    For the filling:
  • 80g softened butter/margarine
  • 80g light soft brown sugar
  • 3-4tsp ground cinnamon
  • 50g raisins (optional)
    For the maple glaze:
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Splash of milk to loosen it

Instructions

    For the rolls:
  1. Sift your two flours into a large bowl. Pour your sugar and salt into one side of the bowl and your packet of yeast into the other. Mix everything together.
  2. Meanwhile, heat your butter, milk and vanilla in a small pan until all melted together.
  3. Pour this into your dry ingredients.
  4. Mix well to form a stiff dough before adding your beaten egg to loosen it. It should be a fairly wet dough.
  5. Use either your hands or a food mixer fitted with a dough hook to knead the dough as best you can for 5-10 minutes until the dough is slightly less sticky and it becomes nice and stretchy.
  6. Tip the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and cover with some clingfilm. Tuck this away somewhere warm or place it out in the warm sun for at least 45 minutes until the dough has risen noticeably.
  7. After the dough has risen, tip it out onto a floured surface, at this point the dough should be quite wet so make sure your hands are coated in flour too. You might need to work the dough a little with your floured hands to make it behave a little better.
  8. Use a rolling pin to roll out your dough into a rectangle no thinner than a centimetre. The rectangle should be landscape with a long edge closest to you.
    For the filling:
  1. Use a spatula or knife to lightly cover the whole rectangle of dough with a nice lick of butter.
  2. Mix your sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle them evenly all over the dough, throw over your raisins.
  3. Grabbing the two corners of the long edge furthest away from you, slowly and tightly roll your dough up towards you into a sausage.
  4. Before slicing the rolls, prepare a square 20cm tin or casserole dish by greasing/lining it.
  5. Cut the sausage into 9 fairly equal slices and fit the rolls into your tin swirl-side up. These will need to rest in a warm place to rise for another 45 minutes or so.
  6. Meanwhile, preheat your oven – 200 degrees for conventional or 180 degrees for fan – and prepare the glaze for the rolls.
    For the glaze:
  1. In a small bowl, combine all your ingredients and mix them until smooth. Once your rolls have risen for at least 45 minutes, use a brush to glaze the top of your rolls with the syrup mixture. At this point you can also sprinkle over some extra brown sugar if you like.
  2. Now just pop the rolls into the oven and bake for 30-35 minutes until further risen and a lovely golden brown colour. Don’t worry that they’re all squashed and stuck together, they’re supposed to do this!
  3. Once baked, these will need to cool for at least 20 minutes on a wire rack.
  4. Serve the rolls as they are, with a dusting of icing sugar, or even with a little extra glaze.
  5. Enjoy!

You can add any other flavours, nuts or fruit to the filling!

http://maverickbaking.com/cinnamon-rolls/

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