Friday, January 28, 2011

Snow Day

We had our first 2011 snow storm here in the DC area this past Wednesday. It was kinda crazy - not as bad as the blizzard last year, but people got stuck on the roads for hours and power is still out for many in the area :( Luckily we had power and I am ever so grateful.

Of course I was snowed in and itching to bake something. But what? All week there were these store bought cinnamon rolls on the counter. I try to never eat that stuff. My motivation for staying away? Just look at the label:

I can't even read half the ingredients names. 15 grams of fat in only half a roll?! Holey moley! So I decided to make my own rolls. I made the dough, let it rise once and formed the rolls before I went to bed so they would be ready to pop in the oven in the morning. Here's the recipe I used with my modifications in red.

Overnight Cinnamon Rolls
Modified from All Recipes

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • Melted butter
  1. Heat the milk in a small saucepan until it bubbles, then remove from heat. Add the butter and stir until melted; let cool until lukewarm.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, dissolve the yeast in the milk mixture. Add the sugar, 3 cups of flour, salt and eggs; stir well to combine with paddle attachment. Then switch to the dough hook and Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and supple, about 8 minutes.
  3. Lightly oil a large mixing bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour. (My house is pretty cool and dry since it's the winter time. Since I have a gas oven I turned it to 170 degrees and placed the dough in the bowl on top of the stove to create a warm/humid environment to rise. I think my house was still too cool so I let it sit a little longer and it finally began to rise.)
  4. Deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a 10x 14 inch rectangle. Lightly brush the far edge with water. In a small bowl combine the cinnamon and 3/4 cup brown sugar and sprinkle over the rectangles. (I divided my dough into four sections and rolled it out separately. So much easier to deal with smaller rolls! This way you can also do some without the nuts for those who do not like them. Combine brown sugar and cinnamon. After you roll the dough into a rectangle, brush with melted butter then sprinkle the brown sugar and cinnamon then sprinkle with nuts.)
  5. Cut the dough into 12 equal pieces; place the pieces in a greased 9x13 inch baking pan, or 12 inch deep dish pizza pan. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator to rise overnight. (Since I had 4 smaller rolls, I cut them each about an inch and a half thick and placed them in muffin tins. I got about 24 rolls. Since the house was cool I left them out to rise overnight on the counter).
  6. The next morning, preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Take the rolls out of the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. (Since I left them on the counter I did not have to wait for them to come to room temp.)
  7. Bake the rolls for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden. (Since I used the muffin tins, I only had to bake them for 15-18 minutes. If you use the tin, be careful NOT to over bake. Also may want to put the pans on top of a cookie sheet because some of the filling dripped over when I baked them in the tins.)
  8. Top with your favorite cream cheese frosting or glaze.

These were so yummy! Baking them in the tins make them a little more crustier, so like I said be careful not to over bake (I did that to a few by accident). I think these have become a snow day tradition - I made them during the blizzard last year too. I say calories don't count when it snows! ;-) ~Cara Lee

PS - 4 more days to enter the GIVEAWAY (just a reminder ;-)

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