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Monday, March 3, 2008

Cinnabon (tm) Knock-off Cinnamon Buns

I love Cinnabons but I rarely have them as they are incredibly fattening and somewhat expensive. So when I found this recipe, I *had* to try making them at home. They turned out really good, though not quite as good as the real thing. This is not your everyday dessert, as they are quite filling, but they are great for special treat, and they come up to about 75 cents a pop, which is way cheaper than the real thing.

Ingredients (for 10-12 rolls)

2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 cup (240 ml) milk
1/2 cup (100 g) white sugar
1/3 cup (75 g) butter
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
4 cups (500 g) all-purpose (plain) flour

1 cup (220 g) packed brown sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
1/3 cup (75 g) butter, softened

Icing (Frosting):
1/4 cup (60 g) butter, softened
1/4 cup (60g) cream cheese, softened
1 1/2 cup (190 g) confectioners' (powdered) sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon lemon extract
~ 1 tablespoon water or more to achieve desired consistency


For the rolls:
Put all the ingredients for the rolls in the bread machine and use the dough setting. The resulting dough was a bit too soft for my bread machine, and it kept getting under the paddle. Other than that, the machine did just fine. If you don't have a bread machine, see the recipe on top for instructions on making it manually.

On a piece of plastic foil flatten the dough into a rectangle approximately 21 inches long, 16 inches wide (53 cm x 40 cm), and about ¼ inch (1/2 cm) thick. Or so says the recipe, but next time I am going to split it into two balls and two smaller rectangles, as the resulting buns were too big for me.

For the filling:
Combine the brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. Spread the softened butter evenly over the surface of the dough rectangle, and sprinkle the cinnamon-sugar evenly on top.

With the help of the foil form the dough rectangle into a tight roll along the longer (21 inch) side. Tight is the operative word here, or the cinnamon filing will fall out when the roll is cut.

When working with a roll like this, I like to stick it in the freezer for 15 min so it's easier to cut. Don't overdo it though, as freezer temperatures kill the yeast.

Cut the roll into 2 inch (5 cm) thick slices and place slices on a greased baking sheet.

Proof until they double in size (about 30 minutes).

Bake for 10 minutes at 400 F (205 C) until they are golden on top.

While buns are baking, beat the butter and cream cheese in a large bowl. Add the powdered sugar and mix on low speed until the sugar is incorporated, then add the flavorings and enough water (or milk) to obtain the desired consistency. Mix on high speed again until the icing is smooth and fluffy.

Let the buns cool for about 10 min and cover with frosting.

As you can see, my frosting skills are pretty much non-existent:

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