Thursday, August 23, 2007

Ooey Gooey Cinnamon Rolls

I've been making cinnamon rolls for years and over the years have altered my recipe many times. They take some time and are a pretty messy thing to make- but so worth the time and effort. Tony LOVES these more than just about anything and is thrilled when I make them. This recipe makes pans and pans of cinnamon rolls but if I am going to go to the time and trouble- I want to make a bunch!

4 cups warm water
1 cup sugar
2 T yeast
2 T salt
2 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
10-12 cups flour (yes it's almost a whole bag!)

1 cup butter, melted
2 cups packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
4 t cinnamon

1 (8oz) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
3 cups powdered sugar
1 t vanilla extract
1 T milk (or more if needed)

Dissolve yeast in warm water in VERY large mixing bowl for about 5 minutes. Add sugar and stir. Stir in lightly beaten eggs and oil. Gradually begin mixing in flour and salt to liquid mixture. You might not need entire amount of flour. Add enough until dough begins to move away from sides of bowl and is soft but manageable.

Cover dough with damp paper towels or damp dish towel and let rise till doubled. I usually turn my oven on and set the bowl on the oven so that the dough will rise faster.

Punch dough down on flour covered surface and divide in half. Roll out one half into a large rectangle using a rolling pin.

Combine filling ingredients. Spread half of filling over rectangle with rubber spatula almost to edge of dough.
Roll up dough, beginning at long end. Pinch ends to seal. Slice into rolls. Place cut side down in a well greased 9 x 13 inch pan.

Repeat with remaining half of dough and filling. Cover with plastic wrap sprayed with cooking spray and let rise until doubled. (Usually I make these at night, refrigerate overnight, and then take them out EARLY in the morning to let them rise the second time. I made these last night and got up at 4 to take them out and by the time I got home from the gym around 6 they were ready to go in the oven)

Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes. Check at earliest time to prevent over browning.

For frosting, beat together cream cheese and butter. Beat in milk and vanilla. Gradually beat in powdered sugar; beating till smooth. Frost warm rolls.

TIP OF THE DAY: When slicing into rolls, using dental floss instead of a knife. Just pull off an approximately 12 inch piece of unflavored dental floss, slide under the roll of dough, cross over the top and pull on each side. It cuts easily and perfectly every time!

Tomorrow's Daily Special: Peanut Butter Brownie Trifle (aka GLUE)