Sunday, April 6, 2008

Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Glaze


Must be Conference Sunday...

The March issue of Bon Appetit has another installment of Cooking Life by the author of one of my favorite blogs, Orangette. I LOVE this article. There is no pretentious, pseudo-expert air about her . . . she tells it like it is. She writes about yeast and her years of fear and intimidation about that one little word. How she'd skip over a recipe if it had the 'yeast' word in it . . . and then, this past Fall . . . she took the plunge, never to be the same again. I share her recipe not because the world doesn't have enough versions of recipes for cinnamon rolls. I share it because she conquered a culinary fear. THAT is fun to me.

DOUGH

1 cup whole milk
3 T. unsalted butter
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
2 1/4 t. rapid rise yeast
1 t. salt
Nonstick spray

FILLING

3/4 cup packed golden brown sugar
2 T. cinnamon
1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

GLAZE

4 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 t. vanilla

Combine milk and butter in glass measuring cup. Microwave on high until butter melts and mixture is just warmed, 30 to 45 seconds. Pour into bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Add 1 cup of flour, sugar, egg, yeast and salt. Beat on low speed 3 minutes, stopping occasionally to scrape down sides of bowl. Add 2 1/2 cups flour. Beat on low until flour is absorbed and dough is sticky, scraping down sides of bowl. If dough is very sticky, add more flour by tablespoonfuls until dough begins to form ball and pulls away from sides of bowl. Turn dough out onto lightly floured work surface. Knead dough until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if sticky, about 8 minutes. Form into ball.

Lightly oil bowl with nonstick spray. Transfer dough to bowl, turning to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and towel. Let dough rise in warm spot until doubled in volume, about 2 hours.

FILLING

Mix brown sugar and cinnamon in medium bowl.

Punch down dough and transfer to floured work surface. Roll out to rectangle and spread butter over dough, leaving 1/2 inch border. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar evenly over butter. Roll dough into log and cut crosswise into 18 equal slices, each about 1/2 inch wide.

Spray two 9 inch square glass baking dishes with nonstick spray. Divide rolls between baking dishes, arranging cut side up. Cover with plastic wrap and kitchen towel. Let dough rise in warm draft-free area until almost doubled in volume, 40 to 45 minutes.

Bake at 375 until golden, about 20 minutes. Invert onto rack and cool for 10 minutes. Turn rolls right side up and glaze.

GLAZE

Combine cream cheese, powdered sugar, butter and vanilla in medium bowl and beat until smooth. Spread glaze on rolls and serve.

P.S. These are rising right now...

Friday, April 4, 2008

Kettle Corn


It's one of those things, kettle corn . . . you either love it or you hate it. I fall into the "love it" category. During the house renovation I was sometimes guilty of suggesting a run to Lowe's in Green Valley only because that vendor outside made the most fabulous kettle corn ever. Sadly (or luckily, depending on how you look at it) he's moved on. I was left to my own devices and I gave it a shot last night. It was delicious.

1/2 cup popcorn
2 T. corn syrup
2 T. sugar
1 t. salt
1 t. oil

I pop my popcorn in the whirly pop, so the oil and popcorn and corn syrup go in the bottom of the pan. In last night's experiment I omitted the oil. Just as you start to hear the popcorn sizzle add the sugar. Once it's all popped add the salt. I understand if you add brown sugar instead of white sugar it will taste a little more like caramel corn. We'll see.

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