Saturday, July 10, 2010

SINnamon Rolls with White Chocolate Buttercream

There are a lot of foodstuffs out there that I prefer the smell of over the taste, luckily. To name a few, there are things like caramel corn, coffee, licorice, cotton candy, most fruit pies, coffee cake, and then there are cinnamon rolls.

I made these cinnamon rolls this morning and boy I wish I could smell the kitchen when they were baking. I could wear it as a perfume, but I'm not really crazy about the taste of cinnamon in sugary foods. This is a very easy recipe, and I use a delectable frosting on the top, similar to that place in the mall, only a little better. ;) There are no nuts in the mixture, but you can easily add them in if you want. I like them almost ground up into crumbs. Almonds are a terrific alternative to pecans as well.

1/4-ounce package yeast
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 cup scalded milk
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup butter or shortening
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg
4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup melted butter, plus more for pan
3/4 cup brown sugar, plus more for pan
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 tsp cardamom
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp clove
3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs or 3/4 cup ground almonds, chopped pecans, or chopped walnuts
(You can also add raisins, dried cranberries, dried blueberries, or even mini chocolate chips.)

1 stick butter
2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 Tbs triple sec
1 tsp orange extract
1 tsp orange zest
3 tablespoons warm milk
1/2 cup melted white chocolate
Dash of sea salt (if using unsalted butter)

Directions: Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water and set aside. In a large bowl mix milk, sugar, melted butter, salt and egg. Add 2 cups of flour and mix until smooth. Add yeast mixture. Mix in remaining flour until dough is easy to handle. Knead dough on lightly floured surface for 5 to 10 minutes. Place in a buttered or well-oiled bowl, cover and let rise until doubled in size, usually 1 to 1 1/2 hours. I put the bowl of dough in my laundry room while the dryer was on, and it facilitated the rising dough quite nicely.

When doubled in size, punch down dough. Roll out on a floured surface into a 15 by 9-inch rectangle. Spread melted butter all over dough. Mix sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over buttered dough. Sprinkle with walnuts, pecans, chips, or raisins if desired. Beginning at the 15-inch side, role up dough and pinch edge together to seal. Cut into 12-15 slices. Remember, these are just estimates, roll out and cut the dough to your liking... ;)

Coat the bottom of baking pan with butter and sprinkle with sugar. Place cinnamon roll slices close together in the pan and let rise until dough is doubled, about 45 minutes. Bake for about 30 minutes or until nicely browned.

Meanwhile, make the frosting by mixing the softened butter and sugar together. Microwave the milk and white chocolate together to melt the chocolate. Be careful of burning the chocolate, so melt it 5 seconds at a time while stirring. Add your extracts to the milk and chocolate, then pour the chocolate mixture into the butter and sugar. Don't forget that bit of salt if you are using unsalted butter. Spread frosting over still slightly warm rolls. They are best enjoyed this way!

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