Monday, November 7, 2011
I looked through my old cookbooks to find a nice, easy recipe for cinnamon rolls. One of my Betty Crocker Cookbooks was published around the 1970's. I like how the recipes include shortening or a butter substitute. I also appreciate that there are no microwave directions, no bread machine guidelines or any of those modern shortcuts that I don't understand how to use! I like to bake old fashioned American goodness and I love the old fashioned recipes.
First, I made the "Sweet Roll Dough" found on page 215. This included 1 pkg. yeast, 1/2 c. warm water, 1/2 c. lukewarm milk, 1/3 c. butter (or shortening), (I lightly heated the milk and butter on the stove- top), 1 t. salt, an egg and 2 cups plus 2 cups Gold Medal flour (mix 2 cups first, then add the last 2 as needed for mixing and kneading). I mixed this all together, then kneaded it for a few minutes.
I use a butcher-block counter. I always put a little vegetable oil on the surface, and on my hands, before I work with the dough. This prevents it from sticking.
When the dough was ready, I poured a little bit of oil in a stainless steel mixing bowl. Then I turned the dough over in the oil to coat it. I covered the bowl with a dishcloth.
The dough had to rise until doubled. Because my house is drafty, I turn on the oven to 200 degrees (some recommend 100 degrees). When the oven is preheated, I shut it off. Then I take a small baking pan (such as a cake pan) and fill it halfway with steaming hot water. I place this on the lower rack of the oven. This helps keep the oven warm.
I put the bowl of dough on the top rack of the oven. I let it sit for an hour and a half.
During this time, I washed dishes, and listened to Crooners. We don't have a working light in our kitchen, so we use a small lamp on the counter. It makes working in the kitchen a lovely experience.
I still had some time before the dough would be ready, so I watched a little television and took a break.
When the dough was ready, I "punched" it down, then put it on my counter. I rolled it out into a rectangular shape (18 x 9 inches). I used one of the children's rulers to measure the side of the dough.
I never can get the dough to measure right. I make a lot of mistakes, over- measure things, and spill flour on the flour. Through it all, I remain cheerful, while listening to sweet music from the old days.
It was time for the cinnamon part of the process - I put 2 tablespoons of butter into a small saucepan on low heat, to melt it. The butter should be brushed over the top of the sweet dough. A pastry brush works well, but I used a piece of plastic wrap. You could also use a baggie. The plastic wrap is thin and hard to work with. I had to do this quickly to avoid burning my hand because of the hot butter. The delightful scent of warm, sweet dough was incredible.
I measured out 1/4 cup sugar and mixed it with 2 teaspoons of cinnamon. I used a spoon to sprinkle this over the butter, on top of the sweet dough.
I carefully rolled the dough, starting from the long side. This created a large rope of dough. I pinched the ends to seal it.
Next, I greased a 12 cup muffin pan.
I used my paring knife to slice the dough into 1 inch pieces. I ended up with 18 pieces. 12 went into the muffin pan. The rest were put into a brownie pan.
I let the dough rise, back in the oven, for around 30 minutes.
I placed the pans on the counter so I could pre-heat my oven to 375 degrees. Then I baked the rolls for around 15 minutes. I overcooked mine by accident, so they are a bit crusty. (If I them serve while still warm, no one will really care. - smiles)
I placed these on a cooling rack for around 5 minutes, then transferred them to a plate. I did not want to ice all of them with a glaze. But if you want to, it's very easy:
In a small mixing bowl, put 1 cup powdered sugar. Add 1 - 3 Tablespoons of milk and 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Mix until desired consistency. Add a little more milk if necessary. Then drizzle over warm rolls.
Looking at this picture, you can see the rolls look more like crusty bread. We are going to have times when our baked goods come out perfectly, and other times when they are just "okay." Regardless, the process of baking and the delightful scents in the kitchen are precious. Just be sure to clean up as you go along so you can relax as soon as the food is ready!
Grace Kelly would never be one of those Bossy Wives.
Quiet, simple ways of How a Housewife Passes the Time.
Vintage, Classic idea - Cooking for Mister.
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