Cinnabon Rolls

I have an inherited disease. It’s a love of Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls. Once upon a time, before Google and Pinterest were things, before restaurants released “secret recipes,” and my mother was a stay at home mom, she made many batches in an attempt to replicate the Cinnabon Roll. They used to be much more popular than they are today. It is once in a blue moon to come across a store/stand. I am lucky enough to have a mall that has a Cinnabon kiosk. *Yes, be jealous.* Thankfully we are beyond the Pintrest-less years, and most recipes can be found online. Even though I’d just had Cinnabon Center of the Rolls on Wednesday, I needed some more. So I made them. Prepare yourself for butter, cinnamon, brown sugar, and frosting, to take over your weekend breakfast.

Depending on how tall you cut your rolls, this batch makes 8-12 cinnamon rolls. I suggest cutting them at least 2 inches though.

Ingredients:

Dough
1 package active dry yeast
1 cup warm milk
½ cup granulated sugar
⅓ cup softened butter (not melted)
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
4 cups all purpose flour
Filling
1 cup lightly packed brown sugar
2-3 tablespoons cinnamon
⅓ cup softened butter
Frosting
2 cups powdered sugar
Half the juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon vanilla
Milk until desired consistency
  1. Dissolve the yeast in the warm milk in a stand mixer with a sprinkle of sugar. Let sit a minute or two.
  2. Add sugar, eggs, and half of the flour flour to the bowl of a mixer and mix well using the dough attachment.
  3. Cut and add in the soft butter along with the rest of the flour. Continue to knead until well combined.
  4. Place dough into an oiled bowl, cover and let rise in a warm place about 1 hour or until the dough has doubled in size. 12736031_10208509233113451_1755304200_n.jpg
  5. Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface until it’s about 1/4 inch thick. My dough patch was HUGE!
  6. To make filling, brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl.12736046_10208509232873445_184962519_n.jpg
  7. Spread the filling butter on the surface of the dough. I literally squished it in my hands to soften and spread it. Dump and spread the mixture evenly over the surface of the dough. 12746440_10208510359821618_423696633_n.jpg 12769407_10208510359661614_741690829_n.jpg
  8. Working carefully, from the long edge, roll the dough down to the bottom edge. Cut I used a cerated knife. 12736431_10208510227058299_249941488_n.jpg
  9. Place the cut rolls in a lightly greased pan. Cover them with a . Let them rise again for another 30 minutes until they double in size. 12736337_10208510226618288_1088431460_n.jpg
  10. Preheat oven to 350 F degrees. Grease a 9×13 inch baking pan.
  11. Bake for about 20 minutes or until light golden brown. I baked mine for 18 and they were perfect!  12767385_10208510226298280_1408391615_n.jpg
  12. While the rolls are baking make the icing by mixing all ingredients and whisk until combined. Using a whisk attachment on your stand mixer would add additional fluff if you like that sort of thing.
  13. When the rolls are done, spread generously with icing.12721777_10208510225178252_1344450237_n.jpg

EAT WARM! If you can’t eat them right out of the oven, warming them in the microwave for 10-15 seconds is PERFECT! Drink with a nice hot cup of coffee or tall glass of milk!

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Homemade Chocolate Cupcakes with Buttercream Frosting

I did it again! I managed to somehow make great cupcakes without following an actual recipe, for a great cause- my Mama’s birthday! 😀 We’re kind of best friends. ANYWAY. She requested chocolate cupcakes, so I obliged.10690149_10205874357163199_588961454879716748_n

Ingredients Cupcakes:

1 stick of room temperature butter

1/2 granulated sugar

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 cup HOT coffee (if you do not like coffee, this can be substituted by hot water, hot milk….it just has to be a hot liquid)

3/4 cup heavy whipping cream (milk is ok too)

1/3 cup sour cream

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup cocoa powder

1 1/2 teaspoon baking POWDER

1 1/2 teaspoon baking SODA

1 3/4 cup flour

1. Sift together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking powder. In a mixer, cream your butter and sugar. Add in your eggs, heavy whipping cream, vegetable oil and sour cream. It will be smooth and creamy!

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2. Pre-heat your oven to 350. Slowly add in the sifted dry ingredients and coffee alternately. You will get a nice light and fluffy batter.

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3. I used a large ice cream scoop to fill my liners, but about a 1/4 of a cup is perfect.

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4. Bake 18-22 minutes, or until a knife comes out clean. For my oven, these guys were perfect after 18. Remove to a cooling rack and let COMPLETELY cool BEFORE icing!

Ingredients Buttercream

2 sticks room temperature butter

1 1lb bag of powdered sugar

1 1/2 teaspoon on vanilla extract (almond, peppermint or orange could be good here as well)

Milk (heavy whipping cream or flavored creamer can also be used)

Food dye (optional)

1. In a mixer with the whip attachment, cream the butter until it starts getting nice and fluffy.

2. Slowly begin adding the powdered sugar on the LOWEST SETTING or you will have sugar flying everywhere. It will start to stiffen up. Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, slowly add milk a splash at a time. DO NOT add the whole 1/4 cup at one shot or you will have gooze. Add in food dye to desired color.

*The thing about buttercream is that it is not an exact science. You may need to go back and forth adding little bits of milk and powdered sugar until you get the amount of frosting that you are looking for and the consistency that you need.*

3. I like my frosting nice and whipped/fluffy so I let mine go for a few minutes once the powdered sugar is incorporated.

TO FROST- I wish I would have taken more/better pictures. I saw this method a few weeks ago, and I can’t even remember where, but it is brilliant.

Tear off a good sized piece of surran wrap and place it on the counter. Dump the majority of your frosting on the wrap. Wrap the frosting and twist the ends like a Tootsie Roll. Feed one of the twisted ends through your piping tip. I used a simple round. Get a medium zip-lock bag and snip the corner just enough that the piping tip sticks out. Feed the tip and the twisted surran wrap through the sniped hole of the bag. It’s going to look something like this.

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Cut off the twisted tail of surran wrap, make sure the bag is zipped shut, and you can now pipe your frosting relatively mess free without fear of frosting coming out of the top and getting everywhere!

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Soft, Fluffy Sugar Cookies

Yes, I already have a sugar cookie recipe. See HERE. No, they are not the same. Why? Because my brother is a prickly cactus.  The goober graduated high school and his party is this weekend.

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My last first day, senior year of high school, his first day of freshman year and then obviously his graduation. 🙂

He requested sugar cookies like you buy at the grocery store with that super sugary awesome frosting. Mom was going to buy them but OF COURSE I couldn’t let that happen. In true Anna fashion I looked up about 8 different soft, fluffy sugar cookie recipes, looked at the similarities and differences and went for it. I created my own kinda recipe. So far this method hasn’t failed me yet. These were super easy and at 9:30pm when I decided to make the dough so I could just make the cookies in the morning, I had all of the ingredients in the fridge and pantry to whip them up easily.

Ingredients-

2 sticks butter

3 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla

2 cups of sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

4 cups flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup sour cream

Directions-

1. Cream butter, sugar, sour cream and vanilla

2. Add in 3 eggs

3. Slowly add in flour, baking powder and salt

4. Mix only until dry ingredients are combined. DO NOT OVER MIX! I have a tendency to want to whip everything up thinking it will make it extra fluffy when really it can make it tough and dense. These are supposed to be FLUFFY. Just mix until there are no more pockets of flour.

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5. Make a cross with two piece of intersecting plastic wrap. Plop the dough in the middle and wrap it.

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6. Let refrigerate over-night or at least an hour.

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Pre-heat oven to 350. You have one of two options here. You can roll out the dough 1/2 of and inch thick and use a round cookie cutter or glass to get your desired shape OR you can simple take a large scooper, and gently smoosh down a bit as I did below.

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*I wrote this post between the night I made the dough and the next day when I actually made the cookies. Something I totally didn’t think about that I’m now sharing as an easy tip. Form the dough into a log an inch or so in diameter and THEN wrap and refrigerate it. After it has chilled you can use a serrated knife to just cut medallions about half of an inch thick and plop them down! This takes away having to scoop and press down! It’s done for you already.*

Cook 11-12 minutes. You do not necessarily want the cookies to get brown. There is no brown sugar in the recipe, and the ones you see in the store aren’t brown around the edges are they? NO!

Remove and cool on cookie sheet. Once cool slather on that yummy frosting- recipe found below.

6-8 cups powdered sugar (based on desired viscosity, sweetness etc)

2 teaspoon vanilla

2 stick of butter

3-8 tablespoons milk/heavy whipping cream (based on desired viscosity)

Food coloring- optional

Sprinkles/Jimmies- Necessary

1. Cream butter with vanilla.

2. Slowly add powdered sugar. It will be really dry

3. Add milk/heavy whipping cream until the frosting is at your desired thickness

4. Add food coloring at this point if you so desire.

5. Whip the frosting until it is smooth and fluffy

6. With a small spatula or knife slather on a nice thick layer of frosting

7. Top with jimmies

This will make a lot of frosting, but this recipe makes a lot of cookies and you need to put a healthy amount on each cookie. All of that frosting is totally necessary.

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My brother’s favorite color is green so I dyed the frosting a nice light green as to not dye everyone’s mouths green as well. There is just a little bit of crunch from the bottom but the rest of the cookie is nice and soft.

This recipe yielded 4-5 dozen. There’s a bit of a discrepancy from taste testing the dough and eating a few as they finished. 😉