One dough, 4 different styles of cinnamon buns
As a side note, there have been some changes in the ABC group. Wafae and Chaya have left the group. However, two of my other friends have recently joined (welcome ladies!!):
Open invitation - if you're a Flo Braker fan or you just like to bake, and you own or have easy access to "Baking for All Occasions", please feel free to join me and others in our monthly baking group. Just send me an email and let me know you'd like to join us (HanaasKitchen [at] live [dot] com). Click HERE for more details on the ABC of the Month baking group.
The dough for these buns is a sour cream yeast dough, which I found particularly intriguing. Why? I love sour cream and so far, anything with sour cream in it has turned out great. As you might already know, sour cream acts as a tenderizer due its acidity.
Since I knew this dough was going to be sticky, I decided to make it in my bread machine using the "dough" cycle. This 1.5 hour process mixes the ingredients, kneads the dough, and then proofs the dough (this is the first rise). After this, I took the dough out of the bread machine onto an oiled surface. The dough felt velvety smooth yet sticky. A couple years ago, I would have panicked at the sight of this sticky dough and I would have added tons of flour to make the dough more manageable. This always resulted in heavy and dense rolls or bread. Then one day my friend Wafae shared with me her secret ingredient: oil!
So, using oiled hands, I cut the dough into 13 (not 12) equal pieces of about 50 grams each (yes, I weighed each one). You then take one 50 gram piece, roll it into a small snake, and cut it into 6 small pieces with a bench scraper. Each of those 6 pieces is rolled into a ball. Instead of dipping each one in melted butter (messy!), I just dipped my fingers in the melted butter and put it in the palm of my hand. Then I took the little ball of dough and rolled it in my palm, and then into the cinnamon-sugar mixture it went. Each muffin cup is filled with 5 balls at the bottom and one on top.
For fun I decided to use a couple of mini Angel Food Cake pans I brought back with me from Morocco and essentially made mini versions of Monkey Bread. After rolling 8 x 6 = 48 little balls, and going through the melted butter/cinnamon-sugar process 48 times, I started thinking of ways to shorten the process. I made 2 simple round buns, and 3 braided buns.
After a 30 minute stay in the oven which filled the air with cinnamon goodness, out came 13 golden brown and delicious morsels of cinnamon-scented buns. I immediately removed them from the pans they were in and to my delight found that the sugar coating had caramelized on the bottom (the way it does for sticky buns). While removing them from their pans, I could feel their lightness. Yay! They're not heavy and dense. Now if they taste good too, we'd have a real winner.
And boy did they taste good. The bottom is sweet and gooey.
The inside is soft and filled with tiny air bubbles, while the top is crunchy and cinnamon-y. The question is not IF, but WHEN I will be making these again. Right now, I'm thinking these could do really well at this summer's State Fair baking contest.
- Hubby and I loved these cinnamon-scented sweet rolls. They're feather light, soft, and just sweet enough. Hubby gave these a good 9 out of 10.
- As shown in my 4 rolls varieties, this dough is very versatile. It might very well become my go-to recipe for sweet rolls as well as cinnamon rolls. Add lemon or orange zest to the dough and you'll have something that tastes completely different.
- Although the dough is very sticky, try to resist adding more flour. It will make the buns dense and heavy.
- The recipe calls for 3 Tbsp of butter but I reduced it to 2 Tbsp without any issues.
- Due to the way I coated the tiny balls of dough with melted butter, I had about 1 Tbsp of melted butter left when I was done. So next time, I'll only melt 1 Tbsp of butter instead of 2.
- These buns are supposed to be glazed with a translucent powdered sugar glaze. However, when I tasted these I found them to be sweet enough so I skipped the glaze.
- If you would like to try these buns yourself, you can find the recipe HERE. Better yet, get yourself a copy of this wonderful book.
- Don't forget to check out the ABC blog roll:
- Shandy - Cinnamon Bubble Buns