I have really great memories of these cinnamon rolls that my mom used to bake every Sunday morning. She had gotten the starter from a friend and it made the best dough ever for bread, rolls, and of course cinnamon rolls. I've never quite recovered from the day when my mom threw out that precious starter. From then on, every cinnamon roll was a disappointment and could never compare to those original ones.
Well enter the Pioneer Woman whom I love love love. She posted this Cinnamon Rolls 101 recipe and I spent so much time reading the step by step instructions and drooling over the pictures. I've never been really handy at baking (something about not really being exact about measurements) and am terrible at dough, but I decided to give it a try. With the help of my sister in law, we measured and rolled and sprinkled and baked and to our delight we were finally able to proclaim--the best cinnamon rolls ever!
And the most miraculous thing of all is that I've been able to recreate these time and time again. Here are a couple of tips I can share after making many batches:
- You can tell when the milk/oil/sugar mixture is scalded by the bubbles that just begin to hit the surface
- Use plenty of flour on your surface to help with the rolling
- Yes you will want to track down the maple flavoring for the icing, it's worth it.
- And yes, the coffee is really necessary. I don't drink coffee at all so I just went to get a $1 cup at McDonalds
- These freeze well (I put them in the round aluminum tins, place in a gallon size ziploc bag and then squeeze the air out)
- And any leftover dough, if you can resist the urge to sprinkle more butter and cinnamon sugar on, are actually great left as is and baked as dinner rolls
Here they are baking in the oven (before icing)
And after the glorious icing