Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Copycat Recipe - Cinnamon Rolls

Hope all of you that celebrate Thanksgiving have recovered from this past weekend's food extravaganza, or better yet, have been revived out of turkey induced comas.

This year, I decided not to get crazy busy over the weekend by handing over Thanksgiving hosting duties to my sister-in-law in exchange for Christmas Dinner duty this year. Does anyone smell a whiff of procrastination again?

I even forced myself to sit tight and did not venture out into the maddening crowds for the annual Black Friday (start of the bumper Christmas season) Sales the day after Thanksgiving. And funnily enough, I had a great weekend, just spent sitting around with the family and relaxing.

One thing I did to was whip up a batch of cinnamon rolls/buns for Thanksgiving morning after seeing a imitation recipe in my subscription of Food Network Magazine. I am so thrilled with the results of this recipe, but sadly my photos do no justice to these sweet and pillowy buns.

Cinnabon is a popular pastry and baked goods take-out chain, most often seen in airports and malls and their fluffy cinnamon buns are to die for.

And I may be a little literal in the use of the word die - given they are an easy 880 calories per bun!

So even though we are using a recipe tested by Food Network Kitchen and not endorsed by Cinnabon (their recipe is top secret a la Coca-Cola and KFC), I still tried to do my part in reducing the amount of calories that went in. I've listed the original amounts of butter used (a whopping 12 Tbsp) and then my reduced amounts - yes, even I, of the I-think-pastries-should-be-its-own-Food-Group fame - thought that was just a tad bit too much fat.

The recipe is a cinch, however, it needs about 3 hours for dough rising time, so this isn't something you could just whip up when the neighbors pop over, unfortunately...for them! But trust me, everything else about the recipe is easy. It came together beautifully, even despite my meagre rations of fat and sugar. The buns tasted awesome!

Almost Famous Cinnamon Buns - adapted from Food Network Magazine November 2009.
1 cup milk (they used whole, I used 2%)
1 entire 1/4 oz packet active dry yeast
1/4 cup and 1/4 tsp granulated sugar, divided use
4 Tbsp melted butter and a little bit more to grease the bowl
1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 3/4 cup AP flour
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg

AP flour for dusting
2-4 Tbsp softened butter (they used 12 Tbsp!!)
1/4 cup granulated sugar (they used 1/2 cup)
3 Tbsp ground cinnamon

Glaze (I used only half the quantities of the original recipe, original quantity listed below)
2 cups icing sugar
1/3 cup heavy cream
4 Tbsp melted butter

1. Make the dough: Warm milk over low heat until it reaches about 100 degrees F. Remove from heat and sprinkle yeast and 1/4 tsp sugar. Do not stir, leave aside until foamy. Whisk in melted butter, egg yolk and vanilla.
2. Whisk the flour, remaining 1/4 cup sugar, salt and nutmeg in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add wet ingredients into dry, mix on low speed with a dough hook until thick, sticky and incorporated. Knead on medium speed for about 6 minutes till dough gathers around the hook. Sprinkle in additional flour if necessary up to a max of 2 Tbsp.
3. Remove the dough and shape into a ball. The dough will be very soft and sticky. Butter the mixer bowl, return the dough into it, cover with plastic wrap and leave to rise until doubled, about 1 hour and 15 minutes.
4. On a floured surface, roll out the dough into a rectangle with longer side facing you.
5. Filling: Spread the softened butter over the dough. I found it easy to do with the back of a butter knife and patting on dabs of butter and smoothing it out gently. I barely used 3 Tbsp as opposed to the 12 Tbsp called for in the original recipe! Leave a 1/2 inch unbuttered alongside the farthest long edge.
6. Mix sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over the butter.
7. Brush the unbuttered edge with a little bit of water, roll the dough away from you into a tight cylinder and press along the wet edge to seal (see pictorial above).
8. Cut the dough roll into equal sized portions, I got 11 rolls.
9.Spray a 9-by-13 inch baking pan with baking spray, place the buns cut side down in the pan and leave space in between. Cover with plastic wrap and leave to rise till doubled, about 40 minutes.
10. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
11. Bake the buns till golden brown, about 35 minutes. Remove from oven and let them cool in the pan.
12. Glaze: Mix the ingredients for the glaze and spoon over the rolls. This is where I probably could have used more glaze, I made only half of the original quantity and the rolls were still very warm, so the glaze got quickly absorbed and did not stay on top as the signature white layer you see on authentic Cinnabon buns.
Made no difference to me, they still tasted divine!

Sending these copycat cinnamon buns off to be Yeastspotted!


Simran said...

Cinnabon in India tweaked their recipe to make it eggless and now it tastes awful.

I swear by pioneer woman's cinnamon rolls instead!

Swapna said...

Cinnamon Rolls are my son's fav.... made a batch of these yesterday:)....

Priya (Yallapantula) Mitharwal said...

Wonderfully executed dear. I love cinnabons :)

kothiyavunu.com said...

I absolutely adore cinnamon rolls… and your step by step pics make them even more tempting:) now I wish to have one right now:)

Gulmohar said...

I love them too :-)All the efforts worth it ! Nowadays my family loves the homemade ones than the cinnabon ;-)

Jagruti જાગૃતિ said...

Cinabon looks so yummy...love it with cuppa..you made them perfect !

Kathleen said...

These sound amazing!

tasteofbeirut said...

these cinnamon rolls were recounted by my cousin as being the best thing she tasted in America; I would love to make them again and your recipe sounds like the best one for this project!

Joanne said...

Moan. Cinnabon has to be one of my most favorite guilty pleasures! I'd much rather make it at home though...so I can have six ready and waiting for me to devour! These look delicious!

Deeba PAB said...

at a brilliant copycat you are...I absolutely love these Ann. You tempt me to make some soon...mmmmm