Winnie’s sole purpose for starting this website was to promote wellness and healthy living. You can well imagine her reservations about letting me post this, but after I reminded her that a) healthy living includes a healthy mind – which means doing things that make you happy, b) without an occasional indulgence, you’re existing, not living, and c) this was the only way I’d share the recipe with her, she relented.
So, I’m happy to present
Sam’s Even Better Than Cinnabon Cinnamon Roll Recipe:
Prep time: approx 2 hours
Yield: 15 rolls
|5 ½ Cups All-purpose flour
||2 large mixing bowls
|1 Cup milk
||2 small bowls
|2 large eggs, room temp
||2-cup measuring cup
|15 T butter (2 sticks minus 1T), softened
||1-cup measuring cup
|4 oz ( ½ block) cream cheese, softened
||Wire whisk or fork
|1 ½ Cups powdered sugar
||Large mixing spoon
|1 pkg active dry yeast
|1 1⁄8 t salt
||11×15 glass baking dish
|1 Cup brown sugar, packed
|½ Cup white sugar
||Candy thermometer (optional)
|2⁄3 Cup raisins (optional)
|½ t vanilla extract
|2 3⁄4 T cinnamon
|| Teaspoon or Soup Spoon
|Unsalted butter, vegetable shortening or cooking spray
Put raisins in bowl, add warm water to cover about an inch over them
5 ½ C Flour
1 C Milk
1⁄3 C (6T) Butter
1 t Salt
½ C Sugar
½ T Cinnamon
Combine milk and sugar in 2-cup measuring cup and microwave for 60 – 75 seconds until between 120 – 130 degrees (If you don’t have a thermometer, about the temperature of a hot shower) Add butter, eggs and yeast, mix with whisk and let stand about 5 minutes.
In large mixing bowl, combine 4 ½ cups of the flour with the salt and cinnamon. Add liquid and mix. You can use an electric mixer on a low speed or just do it by hand with a large spoon. Once thoroughly mixed into a sticky glob (this is where that extra cup of flour comes in) , turn out onto a well-floured surface and knead for 7 – 8 minutes. Add a little of the remaining flour whenever the dough starts sticking to the kneading surface (and your hands).
Grease second mixing bowl with the unsalted butter or equivalent. Place dough in bowl, turning once to coat with the butter. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and put it in a warm place to rise until doubled, approximately 60 – 90 minutes.
When the dough has risen, punch down and let rest for 10 minutes.
(Now’s a good time to grab the unsalted butter again and grease your baking dish)
While the dough is resting, drain raisins and place on paper towels, blot excess water, and make your filling:
1 C Brown sugar
2 ¼ T Cinnamon
3 T Butter
Mix brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter in a small bowl.
Note that the texture should allow it to adhere loosely, making small crumbs, not large clumps, when sprinkling.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface. With floured rolling pin, roll into a 15 x 15 inch square approximately 3⁄8” thick. Shape by hand to make it as square as you can, as this will ultimately affect the shape and size of two of the rolls.
(but it doesn’t have to be perfectly square)
Next, smear 2 Tablespoons of softened butter onto the dough, then sprinkle the cinnamon mixture onto it – use your hand to spread it out more or less evenly and cover all the way to the edges, leaving about a half inch or so of uncovered space along the edge closest to you.
Sprinkle raisins over the cinnamon mixture. Wet your finger and run it along the edge closest to you, then, starting from the far edge, roll the dough towards you. Pinch the seam closed (moistening the near edge helps to do this). Don’t worry if you don’t have an airtight seal.
Now you’re staring at a log. Pull off about a foot of dental floss (preferably not mint flavored). Wrapping the ends around your fingers as you normally would, slide the floss under the end of the dough, about an inch in. Cross the two ends of the floss and give a quick but gentle yank.
Place the cut piece into the greased baking dish and repeat until you have 15 1″ slices.
Remember the big deal I made about squaring off the dough? Look at the rolls on the top left and bottom right – those were the end pieces – the better you square it, the better they’ll look. Or, of course, you could just eat those two before serving….
Allow to rise for 30 minutes, then bake in a preheated 350° oven for 20 minutes. The edges will have just begun to brown.
While the rolls are baking, rinse out one of the small bowls and mix your frosting:
4 T Butter
½ t Vanilla extract
1 ½ C Powdered sugar
It’ll be pretty thick, similar to buttercream
Let cool for 10 minutes, then drop one rounded teaspoon of frosting onto each roll, then go back over them with the back of the spoon to spread the frosting. Use all the frosting!
Serve warm, and (affecting an unsteady falsetto) bon appetit!
The recipient of this batch doesn’t like raisins, so I omitted them. I think they’re actually prettier – as well as tastier – with them.