The thing about these cinnamon rolls is that they take some time. They're not difficult, or even especially work intensive, but they require a good 3-4 hours to accommodate the rise times. So when I decide to make cinnamon rolls, I have to plan my day (or at least half a day) around it. But as Colleen made sure to tell me I should point out to everyone, it is so worth it. One of these cinnamon rolls, fresh out of the oven, glazed and gooey, creates Christmas memories. I challenge you to make these one year, and then try not to make them again every year thereafter... the world simply cannot be right anymore without Christmas cinnamon rolls.
Maple Cinnamon Rolls
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman
2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup sugar
1 package active dry yeast
4 cups (plus 1/2 cup extra, reserved) white flour
1/2 tsp (heaping) baking powder
1/2 tsp (scant) baking soda
1/2 Tbsp (heaping) salt
1/4 cup melted butter
1/2 - 1 cup sugar
generous sprinkling of cinnamon
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp maple flavoring OR 2 Tbsp real maple syrup
1/4 cup milk
1/8 cup melted butter
1/8 cup brewed coffee
pinch of salt
1. Heat milk, vegetable oil, and sugar on stove until almost boiling. It is best to use a dutch oven or other similar pot with a lid.
2. Turn off stove and let sit 30-40 minutes until the milk mixture is lukewarm. Sprinkle a package of yeast on top of the milk and let sit for approximately one minute.
3. Mix in 4 cups of flour, cover, and let rise for one hour.
4. After one hour, the dough should have doubled in size. Mix in the extra 1/2 cup flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
5. Roll out the dough on a floured surface so that it is a large rectangle.
6. Spread the 1/4 cup melted butter, sugar, and cinnamon all over the surface of the dough.
7. Roll into a large snake, and then slice up the snake into cinnamon rolls - should make approximately 15 cinnamon rolls.
8. Lie the cinnamon rolls in a large casserole dish. Cover with a towel and let rise for another 20-30 minutes.
9. Preheat oven to 375F/180C.
10. Bake cinnamon rolls for approximately 25 to 30 minutes. They should have risen to fill the pan, and should be slightly golden on top.
11. While the cinnamon rolls are baking, make the maple glaze by mixing together all of the ingredients. Using maple flavoring will make a stronger maple-flavored frosting, and the maple syrup will be a more subtly flavored glaze. Both are good- so it depends on what you feel like!
12. When the cinnamon rolls are finished, pour the maple glaze all over the top of the cinnamon rolls and serve warm.