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Orange Cinnamon Rolls

Ever walked up to someone with a gorgeous pair of shoes on and asked them where they got them from, only to have them give you the stink-eye?  Then they don't even tell you the name of the shop or give you some bogus answer?  Well,  that's how I am with some of my recipes.  There are family recipes that I am not willing to share with anyone (unless your last name is Gordon, Major, or Munnings).  I've gotten a lot better about directing people to my favorite recipe blogs. - I can't keep living so selfishly.  One of my all-time favorite blogs is Sally's Baking Addiction.  She has the best flavor combos for desserts and is a fellow lover of sprinkles and cake batter.  Ok, I'm going to stop gushing about Sally and share one of her recipes with you. 

Cinnamon buns have always been one of my favorite breakfast foods, especially when they're soft and gooey. They're a kind of comfort food for me. My grandmother always makes them for me when I go home.  They're usually accompanied by fruit, grits, muffins, scrambled eggs, and bacon.  I never attempted to make them on my own because I wasn't super comfortable baking with yeast.  I had visions of dough oozing out of the bowl or the loaf being way too dense.  Then I came across Sally's recipe for cinnamon rolls and had to put my fears behind me.  Let me tell you, I was so happy that I did because these babies are awesome!

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I started by zesting my oranges.  Then, I added a packet of dry instant yeast and warm water to the bowl of my Kitchenaid mixer.  After it dissolved, I added the rest of the ingredients (with only 1.5 cups of flour).  Instead of using the Kitchenaid, I used a hand-held mixer like Sally suggested.  Then, I added the rest of the floured and mixed the dough with a wooden spoon.

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Then came the moment of truth.  I put a piece of floured parchment paper on the counter and placed the dough it.  I was very careful to not knead the dough to much, only about 5 minutes. It's ready to go when it becomes pretty elastic and springs back when you poke it. I did it just like my Grand does and I have to say, I felt a sense of accomplishment right then.  

I rolled the dough into a ball and placed in a bowl that was buttered on the inside. Make sure that you cover the dough and the kitchen is warm. it takes about an hour and a half for it to rise.  I kept running into the kitchen to sneak a peek at it.

Back to the floured surface.  I rolled the dough out to a rectangle measuring about 15x9".  Then I spread about 1 tablespoon of butter on the top - it didn't seem like enough at first, but it really was.  

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Then I sprinkled all of that cinnamon sweetness onto the dough and rolled it up tightly. Then I cut each slice about an inch thick.  I used a round pan lined with greased parchment paper because I really didn't want to any of the treats to stick to the pan.  I left a little room between each one because I knew they would expand. 

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My entire house smelled like a big bowl of delicious orange potpurri when I put the pan.  I didn't want the scent to go away.  They only took 30 minutes to bake.  Oh, and make sure that you cover them with foil so that the tops don't get too brown. 

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So soft and gooey!

I drizzled the orange glaze over the rolls while they were still hot sot that it could melt deep down into them.  I wanted to set up a nice little photo shoot from the rolls, but i started eating them as soon as they came out of the oven.  I had hot icing all over my fingers as I unrolled each sweet, citrusy bun.  I'm definitely going to be making these - or some variation - again.  There are just so many ways to jazz up a cinnamon roll.

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Orange Cinnamon Rolls

Adapted from Sally's Baking Addiction

Yields about 2 dozen rolls

 

Ingredients:

For the dough 

  • 1 package active dry yeast (2 and 1/4 teaspoons)
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • fresh orange zest from 1 medium sized orange
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3 - 3.5 cups all-purpose flour

For the filling

  • 2 Tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoon unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

For the glaze

  • 1 cup confectioners' (powdered) sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon orange juice
  • fresh orange zest from 1 medium oranges
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

To Make The Dough: 

  1. Dissolve the yeast in 1/2 cup warm water for about 1 minute.
  2. Stir the yeast/water around.
  3. Add orange zest, orange juice, sugar, salt, egg, butter, and 1.5 cups of flour.
  4. Beat everything together on low with a handheld mixer, scraping down the sides as needed.
  5. With a wooden spoon, stir in enough of the remaining flour to make a dough easy to handle - about 1.5 - 2 more cups. 
  6. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead it with your hands for about 5-6 minutes.
  7. Form the dough into a ball and transfer it to a lightly greased bowl.
  8. Cover the dough and let sit in a warm place until doubled in size, about 1.5 hours.
  9. Line the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish with parchment paper,leaving room on the sides.
  10. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and, using a rolling in, roll into a 15x9 inch rectangle.
  11. Make sure the dough is smooth and evenly thick, even at the corners.

To Make The Filling: 

  1. in a small bowl, mix together sugar and cinnamon.
  2. Spread the dough rectangle with softened butter and sprinkle generously with all of the cinnamon-sugar mixture.
  3. Tightly roll up the dough and cut into 16 even rolls (1 inch in width each) with a very sharp knife.
  4. Arrange them in the prepared baking pan, cut sides up.
  5. Cover the rolls and let them rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes - 1 hour.
  6. Preheat the oven to 375F degrees.
  7. Cover the rolls with aluminum foil and bake for about 25-30 minutes, until they are lightly golden in color.
  8. Transfer the pan to a rack to cool for about 15 minutes.

To Make The Glaze: 

  1. In a small bowl, mix together all of the glaze ingredients and drizzle over rolls before serving.

Stay Sweet!

Randi