24 July 2010

Good morning!

One of the perks of unemployment is that if I want to get up at 05:00 to make cinnamon rolls for breakfast, I can do that. And then I can go back to bed after my (employed) flatmate leaves for work, if I feel like it, or I can take advantage of the nicest weather we've had in a while and bike to Walden Pond. It's all about the choices.

People in Massachusetts don't really believe in straight lines or labeled street corners, making it tricky to follow Google maps directions. Still, it was a good adventure, complete with Fig Newtons. :)

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls
Adapted from Cooking Light.

I really like this recipe, much better than the Giant Cinnamon Rolls I had made for Ben and his flatmates when I crashed with them in DC. (Sorry, Ben!) Too bad I forgot that Becca doesn't like raisins, though.

3 1/4 tsp. dry yeast (1 1/2 pkg.)
3/4 c. warm milk
1/4 c. warm water
1/4 c. unsalted butter, softened
1/4 c. honey
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. lemon juice
1 egg
1 egg white
2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour, divided
1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour

In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in warm milk and water; let stand 5 min. or until foamy. Add the butter, honey, salt, lemon juice, and eggs, and stir well.

Lightly spoon the flours into dry measuring cups and level with a knife. Add the whole wheat flour and 2 c. of the all-purpose flour to the bowl, stirring until a soft dough forms. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, adding just enough of the remaining flour to prevent dough from sticking to hands (Note: dough should still feel sticky).

Place dough in a large bowl coated with cooking spray, turning the dough to coat the top. Cover and let rise in a warm place free from drafts, 1 hr. or until doubled in size.

Punch dough down and roll into a 16" x 12" rectangle on a floured surface. Coat the surface of the dough with cooking spray.

1/4 c. packed brown sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/2 c. raisins

In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Sprinkle the sugar mixture over the dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Sprinkle raisins, pressing gently into the dough.

Starting at a long edge, roll up the rectangle tightly, pressing firmly to eliminate air pockets. Pinch to seal the seam and ends. Cut the dough into 16 rolls and place in a greased 13" x 9" baking pan, cut sides up. Cover and let rise, 45 min. or until doubled in size.

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Uncover and bake the rolls until lightly browned, 22 min. Cool in pan on a wire rack.

3/4 c. powdered sugar
3/4 tsp. vanilla extract
5 tsp. milk

In a small bowl, combine the powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk, stirring to form a thick glaze. Drizzle evenly over the rolls.

Fun fact of the day: I learned the proper way to knead dough through a math colloquium given by Professor Silva at Williams College!

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