Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Best Cinnamon Rolls!!


     Determined to bake something for Christmas Morning I decided that Cinnamon Rolls would be perfect.  I searched various sites and settled on Breadworld.com because Fleischmann's Yeast has always had good recipes for me! I followed the recipe exactly except for adding Pecan's for my Mommy and making 12 instead of 9 of the most wonderful cinnamon rolls ever!! I also broke the process into two steps making and cutting my rolls and chilling them then rising and baking in the morning.  It did take a little extra time to have the rise in the morning but they still worked out just fine. 
     I am pretty sure I will use these as my standby cinnamon rolls, though I will continue to play with other recipes but these will be my standby! I also searched for an icing recipe.  I didn't want just a glaze I wanted a gooey icing but not too sweet. I had some cream cheese and made a similar icing to a carrot cake. Not to sweet and right on the hot rolls its melted into cinnamon roll bliss!!


Grand Award Sweet Rolls


7 to 8 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup sugar
2 envelopes Fleischmann's® RapidRise Yeast
2 teaspoons salt 
1 cup water
1 cup milk 
2/3 cup butter or margarine 
2 large eggs 
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
 



In large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, sugar, undissolved yeast, and salt.  Heat water, milk, and 2/3 cup butter until very warm (120o to 130oF).  Gradually add to flour mixture.  Beat 2 minutes at medium speed of electric mixer, scraping bowl occasionally.  Add eggs and 1 cup flour; beat 2 minutes at high speed, scraping bowl occasionally.  Stir in enough remaining flour to make a soft dough.  Knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes.  Cover; let rest 10 minutes.

Roll dough to 15 x 12-inch rectangle.  Brush with melted butter; sprinkle with Cinnamon Filling and pecans.  Beginning at long end, roll up tightly as for jelly roll.  Pinch seam to seal.  Cut into 12 equal pieces.  Place, cut side up and 1 inch apart, on greased large baking sheet.  Cover; let rise in warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Bake at 375oF for 20 to 25 minutes or until done.


**Cinnamon Filling:
Approximately 1 cup granulate sugar
Approximately 3 Tbsp ground cinnamon
Approximately 1 cup chopped pecans 
 
** I admit that I just used approximations on the cinnamon filling.  We are huge cinnamon people and I basically put a good scoop or two of sugar into a bowl and then added cinnamon until I was happy with the appearance of the mixture.  Create your filling to your liking.


Cream Cheese Icing: 

4 oz Cream Cheese, Room Temperature
1/2 c margarine or butter, Room Temperature
1 3/4 c powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

Place the cream cheese and the butter/margarine in the bowl of an electric mixer fit with the paddle attachment.  Beat until creamy and well mixed, about 5-10 minutes.  Add 1 cup of powdered sugar and beat until creamy and well mixed another 3 minutes.  Add the last 3/4 c of powdered sugar and continue to whip the icing to creamy consistency.  Add the vanilla and mix til blended.  Spread the icing on cinnamon rolls as soon as they come out of the oven.  The icing will slightly melt onto the rolls..amazing.

These are truly amazing and I will enjoy making them again for my friends and family. They are quite simple just a little time and patience.  If I have learned anything it is that making Cinnamon Rolls are not as scary to make as I thought they would be! A Great Giant Cinnamon Roll!

 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

New Blanket



My little brother, not so little now but still, got married unexpectedly last year.  When we met Her earlier in the year I had given her my first rag quilt to use as a blanket. She asked me about it and inquired what it would take to make one.  Well I had decided that I should make her one for Christmas this year. Her favorite color, according to the brother, was teal.  I will tell you finding some teals was not all that easy to do! But after several weeks of searching and picking up a random one and then matching it I found my five patterns and made this blanket for her.  It was my first blanket made from cottons instead of flannel but it came out beautiful.  I am very proud of it and they showed up last week and I was able to give it to her in person! I so love giving hand made gifts.  I am happy she is part of our family, a great girl that keeps that boy in place! They are both amazing and loved :)

Maple Sticky Buns...



My Mom has taken to pulling recipes out of anything she finds for me.  Many of them come from an insert in our local newspaper, it is called Relish and can be accessed on line at Relish.com.  We find many interesting and yummy recipes from this insert and on line.  I have loved making sweet rolls and when Mom handed me this torn out recipes I was taken in.  A sticky bun that doesn't take yeast but looks so very good.  I had spent the day several weeks ago baking several batches of muffins for work and since I was in the kitchen I figured I should try them out.  This recipe was quite simple and I wouldn't hesitate to make it again or play with the filling. It was really good and we had them finished by breakfast.  They were definitely worth the try!!

Maple Sticky Buns

Ingredients

3/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
12 tablespoons butter, divided
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400F. Mix together walnuts, brown sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  2. Bring maple syrup and 4 tablespoons butter to boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Boil 30 seconds, then scrape into a 10-inch cast iron or heavy skillet of pan. Top with one-third of walnut mixture.
  3. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in large bowl. Add 7 tablespoons butter and mix until mixture resembled small peas. Add milk; stir gently, just until the mixture comes together.
  4. Melt remaining 1 tablespoon butter in a small saucepan.
  5. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently 5 or 6 times. Roll into a 9 x 12-inch rectangle. Brush with melted butter.
   6.Cover dough evenly with remaining walnut mixture, patting gently. Roll up  dough to for a 12-inch log,     pinching  seam to seal. Cut into 12 (1-inch) slices and place in pan. Bake 25 minutes. Remove from oven and immediately invert onto a large plate (do this quickly, but carefully—the syrup is very hot). Scrape any syrup from pan and spread over buns. Serve warm or hot.

 Some day I may actually wake up early enough to have something this awesome for breakfast until then I am settled with enjoying it for dessert!


My First Pumpkin Pie..

This Thanksgiving we had to set things up at my Grandparents house, it was easier to travel for us than them and lately it is the best thing to do.  I decided that I would just make a couple simple desserts one of which had to be pumpkin pie for my Grandma.  I had initially wanted to make one I had seen on line that had a hint of orange and a meringue but we decided that part of the enjoyment for my Grandma was the whipped cream.  I decided that I would just make a good old Libby's Pumpkin Pie from the recipe on the can. I tweaked it by adding a little orange zest and made my own freshly whipped cream.  Of all the baking I have done never once did I make a pumpkin pie.  I picked a pastry recipe, just a simple one from my Great Grandma's Joy of Cooking cookbook and decorated it with little pastry leaves to make it festive.  I was very proud when it came out and my only regret was adding the zest of an entire orange. It did overwhelm so for the recipe I will leave out my tweak! It was a good idea and next time I will do only half an orange!

LIBBY'S® Famous Pumpkin Pie:

Ingredients

Directions

MIX sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger and cloves in small bowl. Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk.

POUR into pie shell.

BAKE in preheated 425° F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350° F; bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate. Top with whipped cream before serving. 
 
For my whipped cream, I took a small cartoon and whipped it with powdered sugar to taste and a hint of vanilla.  Nothing beats fresh whipped cream!



Best Peanut Butter Cookies Ever!

So last year my Mom made these peanut butter cookies right of a Heath Toffee Bits package. Oh My Goodness were they awesome! I set out this year when she wanted us to bake one day to find that package in the store so we could make them again and of course to make sure I got the recipe on my blog. There is nothing I would change from this recipe they are so good. The best thing added to a peanut butter cookie was Heath Toffee Bits!!


Heath Bits Peanut Butter Cookies 

1/2 c shortening
3/4 c Peanut Butter
1 1/4 c packed light brown sugar
3 TBSP milk
1 TBSP vanilla extract
1 egg
1 1/2 c all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1 8-oz package Heath Milk Chocolate Toffee Bits, divided

1. Heat oven to 375
2. Beat shortening , peanut butter, brown sugar, milk and vanilla in a large bowl until well blended.  Add egg, beat just until blended.  Combine flour, baking soda and salt; gradually beat into peanut butter mixture. Stir in 1 cup of toffee bits, reserve remained for topping
3.Drop by heaping teaspoons about 2 inches apart onto un-greased cookie sheet (I always use parchment paper); top each with reserved toffee bits.  Bake 7-8 minutes or until set. Do not over bake. Cool 2 minutes and remove to wire rack.  Cool completely
About 3 dozen cookies

These have moved up to the top of my most awesome cookie list!!