In the fall, I visited my friend, Rose, who had recently moved to Washington DC. While I was there, I was tempted by LOTS of delicious cinnamon rolls at bakeries, cafes, and farmers markets. I felt like they were calling my name everywhere we went! I've never had a thing for cinnamon rolls before, but that's all it took. However, I didn't give in to those calling to me on my visit; instead, it made me want to come home and create a perfect cinnamon roll. This is the one.
I found this killer recipe on another blog and I'll never have to try another recipe again. Seriously, this one is killer. I've only had this magic recipe in my hands for 4 months now, but I've made them at least half a dozen times already (not sure if I should admit that). I even made a double batch on Christmas morning for our families. Having so much practice in such a short period of time, I have built in as many shortcuts as I could. You can even start them in the evening so that you don't have to wake up super early for fresh rolls at breakfast time! I will include the timeline that I like to follow, in bold and underlined print (like this), to make this as easy as possible for you to follow and make at home. I think this is the final cut. Easy. Delicous. Done. I hope you enjoy :)
- 1 Tbsp active dry yeast
- 1/2 C warm water (think jacuzzi temp, not boiling.)
- 4 C all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 4 large eggs
- 1/4 C sugar
- 2 sticks butter, (plus an optional 2 Tbsp butter): 1/2 C (1 stick) real butter at room temp (for dough) + 6 Tbsp (3/4 stick) real butter at room temp (for filling) + 2 Tbsp (1/4 stick) melted butter (for glaze) (+ *optional* 2 Tbsp butter, for tops of rolls before cooking)
- 3/4 C packed brown sugar
- 1 Tbsp cinnamon
- 1 C powdered sugar
- 2 Tbsp milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Now rub a little vegetable oil all over the dough ball and place back into the large metal bowl. Cover top of bowl with plastic wrap, set in a warm spot (again, I preheat oven to 100 degrees and then turn it OFF and put my bowl in the oven and close the door). Let rise until at least doubled, about 2 hours.
Then roll up length-wise, and score the rolls so you know you're going to cut them into even sizes (about 2.5 or 3 inches each to yield 12 rolls).
** OR you could roll it from the short end and you would get less rolls, but they would be HUGE fatties!
Either way, be sure to score the rolls before you slice them: I'm the daughter of a contractor, trust me- I know how important it is to measure twice and cut once. The other way around just doesn't work. Here, you can end up with one little runt if you don't measure them out first.
BUTTER or spray your dish before placing rolls in it! Place rolls in baking dish. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and you can either, place in the fridge overnight. Or I've had best luck bypassing the fridge and just letting them rise in that oven until I wake up in the morning around 6:30 or 7 am. This makes them very big and fluffy!
While rolls are baking, mix the glaze. 1 C. powdered sugar, 2 Tbsp melted butter, 2 Tbsp milk, 1 t vanilla extract. (Or you can make a cream cheese frosting instead. Cream cheese frostings are super yummy on cinnamon rolls as well... that's what Cinnabon uses)
Let cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes. WAIT the full time necessary to cool before you glaze, otherwise it will instantly melt and fall into the crevices between the rolls, and you won't see the pretty white glaze.