RECIPE. Jun 8, 2010

Cinnamon Roll on Demand

Cravings. They will be the end of me someday. I will go to great lengths to fulfill a yearning I have for a particular food. I know most people can relate to the insatiable hunger that starts when you see a picture, commercial or recall your favorite treat. It begins small with “That sounds good” and quickly morphs into “I must have that”. The problem with my cravings is they are sudden and very specific. This particular Sunday I wanted a cinnamon roll. Not any cinnamon roll, mind you, but the kind that is firm on the outside and doughy on the inside with plenty of cinnamon and sugar to lick off the plate when the roll is consumed. It also had to come from a local bakery or food establishment.

The key, however, was the cream cheese frosting that must cover the roll so when heated becomes a gooey, sticky, sweet and glutenous mess. My husband, bless his soul, my dog and I set out in our town to find such a dream and returned home empty handed. Frustrated and even further down the craving hole of desire, I decided to make my own. Although, at first try all I could find were recipes that took hours or days to allow dough to rise and rise again. I almost had a tantrum. This would not do, not at all. I wanted that roll, RIGHT NOW. A friend had mentioned a quick recipe and my favorite blog happened to have a link, so I eagerly gave it my all.

I will warn that the dough is incredibly sticky after all the ingredients have been mixed. It was not easy to knead or handle. I would added another 1/4 cup of flour but could have easily added a whole 1/2 cup or more. A friend used white whole wheat dough and next time I will experiment using whole wheat and white to see if the dough is less sticky when using a denser flour. I would definitely recommend using more flour if the dough looks sticky and use lots of flour to knead.

Instead of rolling the dough into a rectangle I found it easier to gently massage or push the dough into the rectangle. Again, use plenty of flour or parchment paper under the dough as it will stick to the surface when you try to roll it up. I muscled my way through the directions, ending up with holes in the dough as I rolled it into a cylinder and realizing I had spread the dough too thin.

In the end, however, I managed to get rolls into a pan that semi-resembled cinnamon rolls and plopped them in the oven. To my delight they took half the time to bake as instructed and I was soon swooning over warm rolls covered in my own cream cheese frosting.

The recipe can be found here. I made some changes. I added 1 tsp ginger powder and 1 tsp cardamom. I used 1/4 cup more flour but would recommend using as much flour as needed to decrease the sticky texture of the dough. I used lots of flour when flattening the dough and rolling it up. Do not roll the dough to thin, try to keep it thick throughout as you roll it into a rectangle.

My rolls only took 15 minutes to bake, make sure you watch them carefully. I flipped the rolls onto a plate from the pie pan and then flipped them again onto another plate instead of on a cooling rack. I figured it would be less mess and they cooled just fine. I used my own cream cheese frosting instead of the one recommended in the recipe. Enjoy!