Wednesday, November 23, 2011

My Mildreds

Happy Birthday, Mama!
I love you.
In your honor, I pulled Mildred the Mixer out of the cupboard several times today and gave her quite a workout.  You would be very proud of us.

I made pies and cinnamon rolls.  You would love the cinnamon rolls.  I promise to make them for you during Christmas when I come up to visit.  How's that?
I hope your day was good.  It was great to talk to you.  Take good care of your cold.


Ultimate Cinnamon Buns
from All-Time Best Holiday Recipes (by the editors of Cook's Illustrated)
makes 8-15, depending on the size you cut them

3/4 c. whole milk, heated to 110˚F
2 1/4 tsp. instant or rapid-rise yeast
3 large eggs, room temperature
4 1/2 c. all-purpose flour, plus extra as needed
1/2 c. cornstarch
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1 1/2 tsp. salt
12 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into 12 pieces and softened

1 1/2 c. packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
4 Tbsp. butter, softened

4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 Tbsp. whole milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 c. confectioners' sugar

1.  For the dough:  Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 200˚F.  When oven reaches 200˚, shut off.  Line 13 x 9-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, allowing excess to hang over pan edges.  Grease foil and a medium bowl.
2.  Whisk milk and yeast in liquid measuring cup until yeast dissolves, then whisk in eggs.  In bowl of stand mixer fitted with dough hook, mix flour, cornstarch, granulated sugar, and salt until combined.  With mixer on low, add warm milk mixture in steady stream and mix until dough comes together, about one minute.  Increase speed to medium and add butter, one piece at a time, until incorporated.  Continue to mix until dough is smooth and comes away from sides of bowl, about 10 minutes.  Turn dough out onto clean surface and knead to form smooth, round ball.  Transfer dough to prepared bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and place in warm oven.  Let rise until doubled in size, about 2 hours.
3.  For the filling:  Combine brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in small bowl.  Turn dough onto lightly floured counter.  Roll dough into 18-inch square, spread with butter, and sprinkle evenly with brown sugar mixture.  Starting with nearest edge, roll dough into tight cylinder, pinch lightly to seal seam, and cut into 8 (or more, depending on how thick you want your rolls) pieces.  Transfer pieces, cut side up, to prepared pan.  Cover with plastic and let rise in warm spot until doubled in size, about an hour.
*After this step, you can refrigerate the rolls for up to 24 hours before baking.  When ready to bake, let the buns sit at room temperature for one hour, then remove the plastic and continue with the recipe from step 4.
4.  For the glaze:  Heat oven to 350˚F.  Whisk the cream cheese, milk, vanilla, and confectioners' sugar in medium bowl until smooth.  Discard plastic and bake buns until deep golden brown and filling is melted, 35-40 minutes.  Transfer pan to wire rack and top buns with 1/2 c. glaze; let cool 30 minutes.  Using foil overhang, lift buns from pan and top with remaining glaze.  Serve.

Bon appétit, Mama!

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