Thursday, March 17, 2016

Cinnamon Roll Friday

We have a tradition in my house that started when my kiddos were all little. Every Friday before school, I would make them Pillsbury cinnamon rolls for breakfast. It was a quick and painless way to get my entire crew out of bed and I've been doing it the same way for years now. But the week after we moved to New Jersey, a huge storm blew through and knocked out our power. My freezer took most of that hit- everything in it defrosting almost entirely and then refreezing. I had four bags of Rhodes dinner rolls in there and each bag had refrozen into a solid block of dough. I felt bad throwing them all out, so instead, I decided to try and make cinnamon rolls with them. The results were perfection- way better than anything Pillsbury had ever given us. So I've been doing Cinnamon Roll Friday this way ever since. It does take more time from start to finish, but it's crazy simple to do. It goes like this.
I think Rhodes makes the best frozen bread dough, but if you can't find that brand in your store, it's okay. Just make sure the bag is for 3 pounds of dough and everything should work out fine. I also usually use dark brown sugar when I make these, but feel free to use whatever type of brown sugar you have in your pantry.  
This is what the dough will look like after it's thawed on the counter for a couple of hours. Just make sure you pull out that little coupon packet they put in the bag along with the dough. I know this fun fact from experience.
Knead the dough for a few minutes to get it nice and smooth.
Using your rolling pin, roll it out into a large rectangle- about 1/3" thick.
Smear a stick of softened butter all over the surface of the dough. Please, please don't use margarine here. That stuff is just Crisco with yellow food coloring and you deserve way better than that. 
Mix your brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl. Sprinkle that mixture all over the butter covered dough, making sure you get all the way to the edges.
Starting at the top of the rectangle, roll the dough towards you. You want to try and roll this as tight as possible, so don't be shy here. You're not gonna hurt anything. I promise.
Keep rolling that baby.
Once you get to the bottom of the rectangle, pinch the dough closed so it doesn't unroll on you.
Using a serrated bread knife, cut the dough into 1" rounds. The best way to do this is by using a slow back and forth sawing motion. Let the knife do the work for you and you'll end up with perfect little pinwheels of cinnamon goodness.
Place the rounds on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Cover them with a clean towel and let them rest on the counter for about 20 minutes. After that, just bake them in a preheated 350 degree oven for 28 minutes.
When they're done, take them out of the oven and let them cool for 10 minutes. Do your best to keep the Red Headed Kid at bay.
Once the rolls have cooled, mix the powdered sugar and milk together  until it's nice and smooth. Drizzle that yummy stuff all over the tops of the rolls. I use a pretty light hand when it comes to icing because I'm all about the carbs, but you can put on as much as you like.
And there you have it. These cinnamon rolls are downright gorgeous and soooo much better tasting than their Pillsbury cousins.
But you don't have to take my word for it. You can just ask The Boys.

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