Thursday, 27 March 2014

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting

This winter has a firm hold on us, eh? It's almost April and we have yet to have more than a few days where it's above zero- here in London, we keep going from almost-spring weather back to -10 highs. I'm tired of it! Give me the warmth- I'd take anything above 0.

Sometimes it's hard to get out of bed when it's grey and cold outside. But, having some warm, delicious cinnamon rolls made by your awesome friend sure help matters. Sarah made these rolls last year (they were devoured) and had promised to make them again this winter. I was more than excited to not only help myself to her baking, but also to show off her work here! She ended up making two batches, the first of regular sized buns, then a second with little mini ones (which are adorable). Whatever the size, these buns are beyond amazing, especially when warmed up in the microwave.

Also! The addition of pumpkin makes these rolls about as healthy as you can get them without deviating too far from the comforting dessert that this season makes us crave. Because of the pumpkin, very little butter is used in the recipe. Which means you can eat 2 big buns and not feel guilty. Or so I believe.

Sarah made these rolls with the traditional cinnamon/sugar filling, but really you could put anything in there. It actually could be quite good with a mozzarella/sage filling if you want to go savoury. I'm imagining how that would taste now- maybe I should get Sarah to make just one more batch...

However you do it, next time you're looking for a decadent treat that tastes like a warm hug feels, try out this recipe! You won't regret it.

Sarah's Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls
Makes 24 big rolls, 50 small rolls (depending on how small you go)

• 1/4 cup warm water
• 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
• 3/4 cup evaporated milk
• 3/4 cup granulated sugar
• 2 cups pumpkin
• 3 tablespoons butter (melted)
• 1 egg, slightly beaten
• 2 teaspoons cinnamon
• 6-8 cups all-purpose flour

• 1/3 cup butter (melted)
• 3/4 cup brown sugar
• 1/2 cup granulated sugar
• 1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon

• 2/3 cup cream cheese (softened)
• 1/2 cup butter (softened)
• 2 cups powdered sugar

1. Combine water and yeast in a large bowl. Add a pinch of salt. Allow to stand until the yeast starts to bubble (5 to 10 minutes). Stir in the evaporated milk, sugar, pumpkin, melted butter, egg and cinnamon. Add in 4 cups of the flour and stir to combine. Continue adding the flour (1/4 cup at a time) until the dough comes together and pulls away from the side of the bowl. Knead the dough until smooth and elastic (5 to 8 minutes).

2. Form the dough into a ball and place in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise until about doubled (about 1 1/2 hours).

3. In a small bowl, melt the butter. In another bowl, combine the brown sugar, granulated sugar, and cinnamon. Grease two 9” x 13” baking dishes with butter (or non-stick cooking spray).

4. Punch the dough down, then divide into 2 equal portions. Working with one portion at a time, roll the dough out on a floured surface to about a 12” x 16” rectangle. Spread half of the butter on the dough, and sprinkle half of the filling mixture on top. Starting at the long side, roll the dough into a log. Cut the log into equal slices. Transfer the slices to the baking dish. Repeat with the remaining ingredients.

5. Lightly press the rolls down, then cover and allow to rise until almost doubled (about 45 minutes).

6. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake the rolls until golden brown (about 30 minutes). Allow to cool.

7. To make the frosting, beat together the cream cheese and butter. Add in the powdered sugar and beat until light and creamy. Frost the rolls while still warm.

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