Friday, June 29, 2012

Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Butter Cream Cheese Icing

I don't really feel like cooking lately.

Don't worry, it's still me. My blogger account hasn't been hacked. I just have the worst cold of my life so I can't taste anything. What's the point of cooking if you can't taste anything? What's the point of LIVING???

But I have been taking pictures of baby swallows.

And of my friend Kez's engagement ring. 

You probably remember her from the pink cake episode. Her dearly beloved was too cool to come take engagement pictures with us. Okay, so he was actually working (work? What's work?) so I just took a million of Kez. Good times.

Guess what else. I got AN ORGAN.

No, I didn't get a new kidney or a heart transplant. Those kinds of organs are all fine and good, but I got an even better kind of organ. This kind. You know, the musical kind. I got it from Audrey. I LOVE YOU AUDREY. Go over to her blog and say hi. Go on, don't be shy. She's nice. And she likes food too. See? You already have something in common. Go on now. And then come back here cause you have to see these cinnamon rolls.

Back? Okay. So you've seen the butter up there in that picture. It's a beautiful thing. You get to pour it all over your dough. Then put some brown sugar and cinnamon on it. 

There's Cookie's hand. She was helping me... by shadowing my photos from the light. Heh. Thanks, Cookie.

Poor cinnamon rolls. They look so lonely. They want to be closer to each other. 

There. Love finds a way.

Okay, now there are a few ways you can eat these.

A. You can just flip them over and have them as sticky buns. 

But if I was going to eat them like that, I would have added pecans on top of the brown sugar. So we move on to the next option.

B. Let the rolls cool and chill the frosting before you frost them. If a pile of frosting is your style, this is the way to go. 

And finally C. Frost them warm. 

This is the best way according to the holy teachings of Saint Yammie. This way you can have them warm and the frosting will seep into the cracks of chewy caramelized sugar, between the tender layers of bread, making it goopey and moist. Go out in peace, my apostles. Preach my teachings to the world.

Cinnamon Rolls with Maple Butter Cream Cheese Icing
Makes about 15 big rolls

Cinnamon Rolls:
(based on my pretzel bun recipe)

2 cups milk
1 1/2 tablespoons (2 packets) active dry yeast
6 tablespoons brown sugar
4 tablespoons butter, melted
4 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons fine salt

2 cups brown sugar
4 tablespoons butter, melted

1 batch frosting (recipe below)

Warm up the milk in the microwave or on the stove for just about one and a half minutes. It should be about 110º. If it's too hot it will kill the yeast. You should be able to comfortably keep your finger in it. Stir in the yeast and let it sit for about 3 minutes. Add the butter and sugar. Add the flour about 1 cup at a time and the add the fine salt. Kneed for about 10 minutes with a stand mixer, or by hand. Put it in a greased bowl and cover with greased cling wrap. Let rise for about 45 minutes or until doubled in size. Preheat the oven to 375º. Punch down dough and roll out into a large rectangle. Hopefully you can see by the pictures how thin I rolled it. If it's too thin, it will tear and be really hard to roll, so just keep that in mind. Brush with the 4 tablespoons of melted butter and then sprinkle on the brown sugar and some cinnamon (as much as you want. I don't like too much). Roll it up into a long log and slice them into about 15 rolls with a bread knife (any serrated knife will do). Place on a baking sheet lined with greased tin foil. I don't let them rise again. Bake for about 20 minutes or until when you tear two apart in the middle it's no longer doughy and the tops are browned. 

NOTE: If you're freaking out about the dough being too soft to handle, throw the dough in the fridge over night after it rises and let it firm up. In the morning punch it down and roll it out and everything. You'll just have to let them rise for a while before you bake them. I don't do it that way but some people freak out at soft dough for some reason, so if you're one of those people, go for the overnight fridge method. 

Maple Butter Cream Cheese Icing:

3 oz. cream cheese, cold
1 stick butter, cut into cubes
pinch salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 teaspoon imitation maple extract
3 tablespoons maple syup
1 cup powdered sugar

In a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, beat the cream cheese, butter, salt, vanilla, maple extract, and maple syrup on high speed until combined. It will look kind of freaky, but don't worry. Add the powdered sugar and beat on low speed to combine and then turn it all the way on high for about 10 minutes or until fluffy and smooth, scraping the edges with a spatula occasionally.

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