Cinnamon rolls are great for many reasons. They taste great and have a holiday feel to them and they get your house smelling like Christmas.
I will include metric measurements which are far more accurate if you have a calibrated scale.
6 1/2 tablespoons sugar 92 g 1 teaspoon salt 7 g 5 1/5 tablespoons unsalted butter (room temp) 78 g 1 large slightly beaten egg 1 teaspoon lemon extract 5 g 2 teaspoon instant yeast 6 g 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour 454 g 3 tablespoons dry milk 28 g 1 cup water around 90 F 227 g OR 1 cup + 2 Tbsp whole milk or buttermilk 255 g Dried fruit, raisins are used most often - optional Nuts - optional Fondant Glaze - see below 1/2 cup Cinnamon Sugar Mix 113 g 6 1/2 tablespoons sugar 92 g 1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon 21 g Make a cream with butter, sugar, and salt using a mixer with a paddle on medium speed. If using dry milk, add this to the cream, but do not add water yet. Whip the egg and lemon extract into the creamed mix with a mixer until it is smooth. Add the flour, yeast, and milk (or water if using dry milk). Mix on low speed until the dough forms a ball. If you don't have a stand mixer, you can mix it with a spoon by hand. In a stand mixer, put on the dough hook and mix on medium speed for 5 or 6 minutes. Alternatively, you can knead by hand. It is done when the dough is supple and tacky feeling, not sticky. Mostly, likely you will have to add a little flour or water to get the dough right. A lot of variables factor into this so each time you make it, it can vary. Add a small amount of water if the dough is too hard, or flour if it is sticky. You can use the windowpane test to know when the dough is properly kneaded. The link to an explaination is below this recipe. You should also take the dough's temperature. It will be very close to 80 F(26-27 C). This will ensure the dough raises properly. Lightly oil a metal bowl and place the dough in it. Roll the dough around to thinly coat the dough. Cover the dough with plastic wrap. Let the dough raise until doubled. This will take 1.5 to 2 hours depending on room temperature. While you are waiting you can line cooking sheets with parchment paper. When the dough is ready, mist the counter with vegetable oil and place the dough on it. Roll out the dough in a rectangle. It should be about 2/3 inches (17 mm) thick. This should make the dough about 14 inches by 12 inches ( 35 cm X 30 cm). Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mix on the dough, evenly. If you like, you can sprinkle raisins and nuts at this point to get them inside the buns. On one end of a long side, carefully roll the dough up so it looks like a giant cigar. Cut into 12-16 pieces. Place each bun on the baking sheet, about 1/2 inch (13mm) apart. Let the dough raise again, until double in size. The dough will expand into each other. This should take about 75-90 minutes. Preheat the over to 350 F (177 C) and place the rack in the middle of the oven. Bake until golden brown, 20-30 minutes. Take them out of the oven and let them cool for 10 minutes. Apply the fondant glaze lightly. A whisk is great for this. Allow to sit for another 10-20 minutes before eating them.
Like most yeast baking goods, it is a little involved but it is fun to learn how to do it. Don’t get frustrated if they are not perfect the first time. It takes practice. The windowpane test works really well to know when it has been kneaded enough. Like all yeast-based recipes, the kneading is the most critical part to getting good results.
Even not-so-well-done cinnamon rolls tastes good!
For the glaze, I do not have metric equivalents on hand.
4 cups powdered sugar 1 teaspoon lemon,vanilla, rum, or orange extract 6 Tbsp to 1/2 cup warm milk Sift the powdered sugar into a bowl. Add the extract and milk in a separate container, a glass measuring cup works great. Slowly add the liquid and whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Stop when the mixture is thick, a smooth paste that when falling from the whisk, it looks like a ribbon.
The glaze is great in many recipes that need a light icing.