Saturday, June 12, 2010

Cinnamon Scrolls

The best part of cinnamon scrolls is not eating them, but the incredibly good smell that creeps out of the oven and surprises you as they're spending time in the oven. So, really, the best way of enjoying them is to make them yourself. And gobble them up when they're still warm. And you can be crazy generous with the cinnamon sugar, enough to make the store-bought ones hang their heads in shame for being so stingy.

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

Makes 10 mini scrolls

For the dough

1/3 cup whole milk
1 Tbsp unsalted butter
4/5 cup  unbleached plain flour 
1/6 cup sugar
1/3 large egg
1 tsp dry instant yeast
1/2 tsp salt

For the filling
1/12 cup unsalted butter, softened
Splash of vanilla essence
Pinch of salt

3 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp ground cinnamon

1. Put milk and butter in a glass measuring cup and zap for 30s on high in microwave till temperature is about 60 degrees c. Pour into a big bowl. When temperature reaches 50 degrees c, add in 1/3 cup flour, yeast, sugar, egg, and salt. 

2. Mix with wooden spatula till combined, scraping down sides of the bowl. When combined, add the rest of the flour 2 Tbsp at a time, ensuring mixture is well combined before adding more flour. When mixture is just dry enough to knead, turn out onto a floured surface.

3. Keep sprinkling whatever flour you have left onto the dough as you knead. Keep kneading until you have a smooth and elastic dough. Stop adding flour when the dough just stops sticking to your hands.

4. Form into a ball and put in a well-oiled bowl. Cover bowl with cling wrap and set in a warm, draft-free place, until doubled. (About 2 hours depending on ambient conditions)

5. When almost doubled, make the filling by stirring vanilla essence and salt into softened butter. Mix together sugar and cinnamon. Taste and adjust sugar/cinnamon balance to your liking.

6. Remove dough from bowl and place gently onto floured surface. Roll out with a floured rolling pin to about 0.5 cm thick. Fold in the left and right sides in to make a rectangle, and roll lightly to secure.

7. Spread butter mixture onto dough, leaving 1cm border. Sprinkle on the cinnamon sugar.

8. Starting from the long side,  roll the dough up. Don't be afraid to give it a good pinch as you go to keep it compact.

9. Trim off both ends, then cut up rolls in your desired thickness.

10. Arrange in a well-oiled baking tray, cover tray with cling wrap, and let sit until almost doubled, about 50 min.

11. Bake at 190 degrees c, 15 min or until tops are golden. Turn out onto cooling rack quickly or they'll be soggy.

Compared to the recipe on Smitten Kitchen, I found that it took less flour to achieve the desired dough consistency, and have reflected this in the recipe above. You may need to sprinkle less/ more flour depending on the brand you are using, since different flour absorbs moisture differently. As a guide, I used White Wings unbleached plain flour.

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