Monday

Cinnamon Rolls


Let's Chat about Cinnamon Rolls

I'm pretty open to different versions: white sugar or brown sugar, different bread recipes...but I do have 2 absolute will not waiver requirements.

#1- NO RAISINS. 
Pretty Please? I don't know why they offend me so, but they do. Save the raisins for trail mix, they have no business in your sweet roll (or mine anyway).  

#2- Every cinnamon roll from my kitchen will be topped with CREAM CHEESE frosting. 
The powdered sugar icing business is just fine, BUT cream cheese frosting takes it to a whole new level.

This is my go-to bread recipe because it is pretty much no fail. 
I put everything in my Bosch mixer and mix away, easy peasy.

Bread Dough Recipe
2 1/2 cups Warm Water
3 eggs
1/2 cup shortening
3 Tablespoons yeast
1 Tablespoon salt
2/3 cup sugar
8-9 cups flour 
1 stick of softened butter
Brown sugar for sprinkling (at least 2 cups)
Cinnamon for sprinkling  (at least 4 tablespoons
(add 1/2 cup at a time after 7 cups to desired consistency)

Mix all ingredients together in your stand mixer with dough hook attachment. 

Put a little bit of canola oil in a large bowl and use a paper towel to spread the oil. 

Form the dough from your mixer into a ball and place the ball in the oiled bowl. 

Cover with a kitchen towel & let the dough rise for 1 hour. 

After one hour, punch the dough down and let rise again for 30 minutes. 

Flour your counter-top, punch down the dough and pinch off about 1/3 -1/2 of the dough (whichever amount you are most comfortable working with). 

Using a rolling pin, roll the dough to be about 1/2 inch thick. 

You want to roll your dough in a rectangle shape (cut sides to make a rectangle if you need to and use that extra dough in your next batch). 

When you have your rectangle, take about 1/2 a stick of softened butter (or more, use your judgement, but be generous) and spread it onto the dough with your hands, covering the entire thing with butter. 

Next, sprinkle a tablespoon or two of cinnamon on top of the butter and spread it around followed by a cup or so of brown sugar, spread evenly. 

Starting on one of the long sides of your rectangle, tightly roll the dough towards you until all the dough is rolled. 

Place the dough roll seam-side down on the counter, cut 1 inch segments and place in a greased pyrex or cookie sheet. 

Rise an additional 30-45 minutes. 

Bake at 350 for 15 minutes or so. 

This is a picture of them mid-bake in my dirty well loved oven.
  
While your rolls are baking, make your 

Cream Cheese Frosting

1-8oz block of cream cheese softened
1 stick of softened butter
1 tsp vanilla 
3 cups powdered sugar

Cream together cream cheese and butter. Add vanilla. Slowly add powdered sugar, scrape the sides of the bowl and mix until fully incorporated.

I like to frost my rolls right out of the oven so the cream cheese frosting drips down into every place possible and covers the cinnamon roll 
all nice and gooey like!







Wednesday

Dressing up your box of Brownies: Peanut Butter Buttercream & Chocolate Ganache



Sometimes, you just need a quick fix. 
An add eggs and water and whisk kind of fix. That's perfectly okay in my book. In fact, I love myself a Ghirardelli Brownie Mix brownie and was quite excited to find the mix at Costco (oh the things my food storage is made of).  Today we are talking about how to bring those box brownies to the next level, and I have just the trick if you are looking for something fancy.

First, make your brownies and let them cool.
 Be sure to lick the whisk after: Best part of making brownies.

Next, prepare your Peanut Butter Buttercream. Friends, this stuff is DIVINE. In fact, often, I will just frost my brownies with this and end it there. 

PB BUTTERCREAM
3/4 cup softened butter
1 1/2 cups of creamy peanut butter 
1 tsp vanilla 
3 cups powdered sugar (more for consistency)
4-6 tablespoons heavy cream (add more or less for consistency)

In your stand mixer, combine butter, peanut butter and vanilla and mix well.
Add powdered sugar and mix.
Add cream slowly until you reach desired consistency.

Spread onto brownies

CHOCOLATE GANACHE
1 bag of your favorite semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
6 tablespoons of heavy cream

Place in a glass microwaveable bowl
Microwave in 30 second intervals until melted and combined
Pour on top of buttercream layer and spread

Let the ganache set (you may refrigerate).