Several weeks ago I ‘accidentally’ made cinnamon buns. I was making cinnamon bread and flung the off cuts into the oven. Twenty minutes later- to my surprise- I pulled a dish of something quite spectacular out of the oven. My mind has been racing with wicked thoughts ever since.
Although the original cinnamon buns were very yummy indeed, it was put to me that they lacked ‘goo’. This was by someone well versed in the ways of American ‘Cinnabon’ cinnamon buns. Pressed further, they launched into a short infomercial about the fresh, icing slathered buns sold across America in shopping malls and airports; I was all ears.
I was mildly outraged that I hadn’t tried one: I have spent quite a lot of time I’m America. I don’t consider myself a competitive person, but one thing was clear: my cinnamon buns would not compete for affection with an American baked good and lose.
These cinnamon buns are very naughty and very delicious. I found an abundance of American cinnamon bun recipes online, all involving copious ‘goo’. To my amusement, the recipe I settled on produced 30 buns, even though I halved the recipe. Luckily, I have discovered that they freeze well. The uncooked oven-ready dough could be frozen instead of the final product, and that is probably a better idea. All you’d need to do is let it come to room temperature then bake.
I feel bound to warn you that if you make these you will find it difficult to stop eating them. They are completely addictive.
Delicious though they may be, these buns have not seen me claim victory in my one- woman Cinnabon battle. The cinnamon bun conisseur, though impressed by these, said that they were more doughnutty in texture than their light, fluffy Cinnabon cousins. I had come to precisely that conclusion one hour before. While I could never take offence from the word ‘doughnutty’, my quest for the perfect cinnamon bun continues. Watch this space.
Cinnamon buns (adapted from thepioneerwoman.com. Click here for the link.)
1 pint milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup sugar
2 packets Active Dried Yeast (2x 7g sachets)
4 cups plain flour (plus 1/2 cup separated)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1/2 tablespoon salt
Plenty of melted butter
Plenty of cinnamon
1 cup sugar
400-500g icing sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla flavouring
1/4 cup milk
1/8 cup strong brewed coffee
1/8 cup melted butter
Pinch of salt
1. In a large plan, heat the milk, vegetable oil and sugar over a low heat until just before boiling. Leave to cool. When lukewarm, stir in the yeast and leave for one minute.
2. Stir in the 4 cups of flour, cover with a tea towel and leave for 2 hours or until doubled in size.
Tick tock. Tick tock.
3. Remove the tea towel and mix in the baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt and remaining 1/2 cup flour.
4. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius.
5. Roll the dough out thin into a large rectangle on a floured surface.
6. Pour the melted butter generously over the dough, followed by the sugar and cinnamon.
7. Roll the dough towards you into a long roll. Don’t worry if some of the buttery filling oozes out. Pinch the seam together.
8. Cut the roll into 1/2 inch rounds. Smooth some melted butter in the bottom of the cooking pans. Place the rolls in the pan, leaving plenty of space around each one. (I used three circular pans I found in a pound shop)
9. Leave to rise for 30 minutes and then bake for 15-18 minutes until golden brown. Do not allow the buns to go too deep a brown.
10. Meanwhile, whisk all of the icing ingredients together until it is thick but pourable.
11. Pour the icing over the buns as soon as they are out of the oven. Don’t forget to pour around the sides of the pan.
12. Marvel at the spectacle in front on you and try not to eat too many.