Hello everyone! As you can see, this month I’m super late for my Daring Bakers post. The end of the semester has been keeping me busy, but I couldn’t miss this post because hello, cinnamon rolls! I looove cinnamon rolls but I had only made them twice so far, so I was super excited about this challenge.
The challenge was actually about rolls, not necessarily cinnamon ones. But I really couldn’t pass up on these :)
And can you believe that just one week before I made them, we saw cinnamon rolls in class? It was totally unexpected because we had been doing mostly French stuff, lots of mousses, jocondes and the like. And even though the subject is called Advanced Pastry and Bread, we hadn’t seen any bread at all. It was a demo class so I didn’t get to make them, but I learned lots of tips and the rolls were sooo good, so I decided to use that recipe (which is one of those mashed potato recipes!)
So, these are some of the tips I learned:
1. Use a silicone mat to reduce the heat at the bottom of the buns and prevent burning (there’s a lot of brown sugar in there, and it can burn easily). If you don’t have a silicone mat, you can stack 2 baking sheets and line them with 2 sheets of foil (I tried both methods, but using just one sheet of foil, cause I’m cheap like that :P). They turned out great, just make sure you wash the silicone mat thoroughly afterwards; otherwise your next batch of macarons will turn out cinnamon-scented.
2. The dough calls for a sponge that needs to rise beforehand. But once the dough is mixed together, let it rest in the fridge. This way it won’t be too soft and you’ll be able to roll it out easily, without adding lots of flour.
3. Leave an inch or two of dough without filling, and sprinkle it with flour (as pictured). When you cut the rolls, that bit will hang loose and you can tuck it beneath the roll to get a neater shape (this didn’t really work for me though; I didn’t add enough flour so the ends stuck).
4. As usual, cut the rolls using a string of plastic thread or flavorless dental floss.
5. This recipe calls for a different type of icing, a sweet paste that is spread on the rolls on the last 5 minutes of baking. It also calls for yummy nuts! It thought this was really good, but make sure you spread it as evenly as you can.
6. Most important tips (this comes from my own experience, as you can see!): It is very important that you bake the rolls in a pan or something with tall sides, and place them rather close together. If you make them in a baking sheets, they will spread to the sides and they’ll turn out rather ugly.
I had to do this because my (brand new) silicone mat was too big, and I didn’t think the sides were that important. Well, they are :P
Anyway, these were a little flat and ugly, but still delicious! I made them with sweet potatoes, though you couldn’t really taste them, so feel free to use regular potatoes. But don’t skip on them, cause they make the dough so soft!
Blog-checking lines: This month the Daring Bakers kept our creativity rolling with cinnamon bun inspired treats. Shelley from C Mom Cook dared us to create our own dough and fill it with any filling we wanted to craft tasty rolled treats, cinnamon not required!
Recipe by IAG
Yield: 12-16 rolls
For the sponge:
3.5 oz / 100 g flour
1/2 cup milk
1 oz / 30 g fresh yeast
For the dough:
7 oz / 200 g mashed potatoes/sweet potatoes
1/2 cup milk
4 oz / 120 g sugar
1 tsp salt
2.5 oz / 70 g butter, softened
14 oz / 400 g flour
zest of one lemon (or vanilla extract; optional)
For the filling:
5.5 oz / 160 g brown sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon
3.5 oz / 100 g butter, softened or melted
For the icing:
2 oz / 60 g butter, softened
7 oz / 200 g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
1/4 cup cream
2 oz / 50 g pecans, chopped
corn/maple syrup (optional)
1. Make the sponge: combine all ingredients and let rise until doubled in volume.
2. Combine the sponge and all the dough ingredients, and knead until a soft dough is formed. Wrap in film and refrigerate until cold; at least one hour.
3. Roll out the dough in a floured surface, until you get a large rectangle. Brush with butter and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.
4. Roll up the dough and cut into buns. Layer the buns on a pan lined with a silicone mat, or a double layer of foil. Cover and let rest until doubled in size.
5. Preheat the oven to 350ºF/180ºC.
6. Make the icing: combine all the ingredients, adding corn or maple syrup if the paste turns out too thick.
7. Bake the buns for 20-25 minutes, spreading the icing on top 5 minutes before the end of the baking time.