Sunday, 29 July 2012

It's My Birthday! Cake Batter Cinnamon Buns

Jessica's Cake Batter Cinnamon Buns have been calling my name since I saw her post over at How Sweet It Is....

It's treat #4 for my birthday celebration!

I'm going to tell you right now - I've never made cinnamon buns before...  So I was pretty nervous about this one.

But I totally made that pull apart bread - and I can make pizza dough - so I'm kind of convinced that I can make cinnamon buns and they'll rise....

I think.

This recipe was another first for me because I've never proofed yeast this way before.

Here's how it goes.

I started out by scalding the milk, sugar, and oil.  Since I had no idea what that meant, I did a little Googling and came up with an answer.  Scalding milk means to bring the milk to just about boiling.  Bubbles should start to appear around the edges of the milk, it will steam, and reach about 180 degrees F.

I used a thermometer to keep an eye on the whole thing.  EEEEven though it doesn't show up here.

Once the milk mixture has reached a scald (is that a term?  "reached a scald"?  Whatevs - it is now.), turn off the heat and let the mixture cool to lukewarm - about 105 to 110 degrees F.  It'll take about 45 minutes to an hour to reach this temperature, depending on how warm your kitchen is.

Once it's reached the lukewarm temperature, sprinkle on the yeast and let it sit for about a minute so the yeast has a chance to soak up some liquid.

Then add in 4 cups of flour and stir until incorporated. 

Cover and let rise for an hour (in a warm place!) or until - TA DAAA! it's doubled in size.

OOOOOOHHHHH  YEEEEEAAAAH!!!!  I made dough rise!

You can kind of see the yeast in there - but I wasn't too concerned.  I did think I let my scalded milk mixture cool a little too much because I was distracted by the work phone (darn it), so maybe that's why. 

After the dough "has risen" (that statement kinda freaks me out - like the dough is a vampire?), add in the remaining flour, baking soda, and mix until combined.

Lightly flour the counter where you'll be working and roll out the dough into a mostly rectangular shape.  Doesn't have to be perfect (cause I'm clearly not!), but it does have to be a "kindof" rectangle.

Brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.


Then sprinkle on the 3/4 cake mix.  I used a sifter so that the cake mix wouldn't be lumpy.

Then roll the dough up starting with the end furthest from you and rolling towards yourself.

Slice the roll into 1 inch thick pieces and put into a greased cake pan.  I used a disposable aluminum one from the dollar store.  I couldn't help myself.

Who wants to clean when it's their birthday?  Not.  Me.

I had a hard time with this for some reason...  I tried the pizza roller - but that didn't work out.  I don't love using a knife on my counter, but it probably would have been fine.  So I ended up using a bench scraper.  I shouldn't have done that. 

I read somewhere that if you use unwaxed dental floss to cut cinnamon buns it works like a dream and I'm totally trying that sometime.

I also got partway through cutting the roll into pieces and realized that I had FORGOTTEN the sprinkles!!!!  Sacrilege!

I just unrolled the dough, put on the sprinkles and rolled it back up.  No harm done.

Then cover and let rise for about 30 to 45 minutes.

Okay - so these look a little funny.  I'm new here.  I don't know exactly what happened!?

Then bake at 400 degrees F for 12 to 15 minutes.

While the buns are baking, make the glaze.  Mix together icing sugar, cake mix, vanilla, and cream.  I added a little bit more cream than called for to get the consistency I wanted.

Then, just before pouring the glaze on your warm cinnamon buns, add the sprinkles (so the color doesn't run).  Jessica suggests adding the sprinkles on top of the glaze - I would just add EXTRA!

Pour glaze over the buns.

And devour.

I realised later on that my pictures aren't the greatest - while baking up these beauties, I was rushing back and forth between this and my work phone trying to make arrangements for travel.  It was entertaining - and nearly wrecked the whole batch.  Curses!

And because I'm self-deprecating - I would like to point out where I think I failed miserably on these.

Cause I'm like that.

And I'm learning!

Now I know for next time.

First of all, I think the milk mixture wasn't warm enough when I added the yeast.  So it might not have properly activated.  Secondly, I think I cut them too thinly, which is maybe why they weren't as thick as I expected them to be.  Lastly, I think my rectangle may have been a little uneven - because the middle was waaaay thicker than the sides.  And - it probably wasn't as successful because I halved the recipe - silly me.

As far as TASTE goes?  They were WONDERFUL!  A really unexpected segue from regular cinnamon buns.

I think I might use that glaze on the Cake Batter Pancakes next time I make them - you know.  Just to amp them up a notch or two above the "holy crap these are the most awesome pancakes I've ever had!" level.

Thank you so much Jessica for yet ANOTHER hit in my house!

Happy Birthday to the Cane girl!
Cake Batter Cinnamon Buns
I halved this recipe....
2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup sugar
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
4 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup yellow cake mix
melted butter
  1. In a large pot combine the milk, sugar, and oil.  Look for bubbles around the edges and, if using a thermometer, the temperature should be about 180 degrees F.
  2. Scald the milk mixture and let cool until lukewarm, about 105 - 115 degrees F.
  3. Sprinkle yeast on top of the milk mixture and let stand for about one minute.
  4. To the pot, add four cups of flour and stir with a spatula to combine well.  Cover and let rise in a warm place for one hour or until doubled in size.
  5. Lightly butter the pans.
  6. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  7. When the flour mixture has risen, add another 1/2 cup flour, baking soda, and baking powder and mix well.
  8. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into a thin (maybe 1/4 inch thick or a little less), rectangular shape.
  9. Brush dough with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon, sugar, and dry cake mix.  Feel free to use your own judgement as to how much butter, cinnamon and sugar you want to use.
  10. Top with sprinkles.
  11. Roll up the dough, starting with the long edge furthest from you and roll tightly towards you.
  12. Cut the roll into 1 inch thick slices and arrange in buttered pans.
  13. Cover the pans and let rolls rise again, about 30 minutes.
  14. Bake in preheated oven for 12 - 15 minutes.
Cake Batter Glaze

1 cup icing sugar
1/4 cup yellow cake mix
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons heavy cream (or milk)
  1. Mix the first four ingredients in a medium bowl until smooth.
  2. Add cream a little bit at a time until the glaze is your desired consistency.
  3. Pour over cinnamon buns and top with sprinkles.  Or add sprinkles to the glaze mixture and add more on top!
Source:  How Sweet It Is