Recently my 11 year old son and I took a kid’s baking class at King Arthur Flour. (I am so lucky that fabulous place is right here in my town!)
Watching the inexperienced crack eggs?
A cheerful team cleaning up after you?
We made two recipes. Well, I should say he made the recipes. I enjoyed watching.
One of the recipes was for these Cinnamon Buns baked up in a festive Christmas tree pan. Tender, soft rolls packed with that sweet cinnamon filling. Divine with or without the tangy cream cheese icing.
Christmas Tree Cinnamon Buns
2 1/2 – 3 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbs dry milk
2 teaspoons instant yeast
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup warm water
2 Tbs butter, softened
1 teaspoon vanilla
Filling (recipe follows)
Icing (recipe follows)
Christmas Tree Pan (Optional. Can be purchased here.)
1. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, sugar, dry milk, yeast and salt.
2. Add water, butter, egg and vanilla to the flour mixture. Stir to combine.
3. Add more flour, a 1/4 cup at a time, until the dough comes cleanly away from the sides of the bowl.
4. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until soft, pliable and not sticky.
5. Lightly grease bowl. Add dough, turn to coat, then cover with a towel or plastic wrap. Set in a warm place to rise, about 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
6. Roll the dough into a 9 x 12-inch rectangle. Brush the dough with a little water then sprinkle with the filling.
7. Roll the dough, jelly roll style, into a log starting from the long edge. Seal the edges by pinching the dough together.
8. Cut the log crosswise into 12 buns. (Using dental floss leaves a nice, clean edge.)
9. Place the rolls, cut side down, into a lightly greased Christmas tree pan or onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Cover and let the buns rise for about 30 minutes.
10. Bake the buns in a preheated 350°F oven for 20 to 22 minutes, or until they’re golden brown.
11. Frost buns with the cream cheese icing, if desired
Makes 12 buns
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1. In a small bowl, mix together the sugar and cinnamon.
3 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1. Beat the cream cheese and butter till blended, using a mixer.
2. Add the sugar and beat until creamy.
Recipes from King Arthur Flour
Queens-based band Side Saddle released their debut album ‘The Astorian’ back in September. It’s a solid offering full of folksy harmonies, inviting backing instruments and the warmth of Ian McGuinness’ vocals.
The melancholy in “Halcyon” is somewhat masked by the cheerful arrangement and the song title itself, but that is what makes the song so good.
“You know I’ve dreaded coming home
I revel in the time alone
but I just can’t bear the pain of leaving
in too far to see it ”
Check out Side Saddle on the band’s Website and Bandcamp where you can buy their music.