So here in the Northeast we are completely snowed in. The roads are closed; we have been asked not to drive anywhere. We have over 30 inches of snow on the ground, and because of drifts caused by high winds, there are snow banks much taller than that.
My dear husband was outside for over two hours employing the snow-blower, shovel and good old-fashioned man power to clear our pathways around the yard. My poor brother-in-law, who snowplows for a living, was out for about 24 hours plowing and cleaning up. He was even out there after the town and state troopers had called it quits.
Long story short, it’s a mess out there. So as a stay-at-home-mom to a kid who’s too young to go play out in this mess, what do I do? Why, bake things, of course! Yesterday it was brownies; today it’s cinnamon rolls.
Now, I’m no Martha Stewart. Typically when I make cinnamon rolls, it involves twisting open a can and waiting about 15 minutes. But I am out of the canned ones and I don’t have any yeast, so I started Googling “yeast free cinnamon rolls recipe.” Here is the one I came up with.
No Yeast Cinnamon Rolls
Yield: 12 rolls
Prep Time: 30 min Cook Time: 20 min
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 cups bread or all-purpose flour, + more for rolling
2 tablespoons granulated white sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup milk
1 large egg, beaten
Cream Cheese Frosting:
2 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
2/3 cup powdered sugar
3 tablespoons milk or buttermilk
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a muffin tin with nonstick spray.
2. Prepare the filling: In a small bowl, combine the filling ingredients with a fork until a crumbly mixture is formed.
3. Prepare the dough: In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Use clean hands (or a pastry blender) to work the butter into the dry ingredients. Add the milk and the egg and stir to combine.
4. Roll the dough out on a floured surface into roughly shaped large rectangle (about 1/4-inch thick). Sprinkle the filling evenly over the surface of the dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border all the way around. Carefully roll up the rectangle (the dough will be soft). Use a sharp knife to cut 12 rolls. If you want smaller rolls, cut them a little smaller and you’ll get 18. Carefully place the rolls in the prepared muffin tin.
5. Bake 20 to 25 minutes. While the cinnamon rolls are baking, prepare the frosting: Combine the cream cheese, powdered sugar and milk/buttermilk in a medium bowl. Use an electric mixer to combine. Add a little more milk if you wish to have a thinner frosting. Spread the frosting on top of warm rolls or drizzle on top. Serve warm.
Source: RecipeGirl.com (Adapted from food.com)
Now, because following directions isn’t my thing (and I was low or out of certain ingredients), I made some changes.
First, I only had light brown sugar and only about half a cup, so I used what I had and then filled in with regular white sugar to get to a cup. To make up for the richness of flavor that my sugars were missing, I added an extra teaspoon of cinnamon to the filling.
The actual dough recipe, I followed pretty closely. I’m not an expert enough baker to mess around with those ratios.
I didn’t have any cream cheese, so again, I turned to Google for a basic icing recipe. And again, I modified it because I felt like it.
My icing recipe was based on this one:
White Glaze Icing for Pastries, Cinnamon Rolls and Danishes
2 Cups confectioners’ sugar
2 Tablespoons butter, softened
1 Teaspoon vanilla
1 Tablespoon milk (orange juice works great too)
I felt that two cups of sugar was too much icing for just a dozen rolls, so my first change was to cut everything in half. Second, I only have one stick of butter left and even though the icing didn’t call for a lot, I decided I should ration my butter since I won’t be getting to the store this weekend. So instead of butter, I used coconut oil. Third, I only had a couple drops of vanilla left, so I used what I had and that was that. Luckily, the coconut oil has a lovely flavor, so I think the lack of vanilla was okay.
So the real test of any from-scratch recipe for me is: Was it worth it? Does the deliciousness of the end product justify the work of the recipe? I’m going with yes on this one!
So here are my recipe notes:
Here’s to staying warm and cozy during a blizzard!