Happy (almost) Thanksgiving! I’m going to keep this blog post really short since I am in the midst of doing a whirlwind clean of my apartment. I’m heading to Connecticut for the holiday Wednesday afternoon and don’t want to leave my apartment a mess, so I’ve spent the day running errands, doing laundry, cleaning, and editing these pictures! I always look forward to Thanksgiving, especially if there’s good stuffing, and can’t wait to just chill out and spend time with family and friends. Hope everyone is doing something fun!
I was excited to be asked again to participate in Rebecca’s seasonal recipe party! This season it was cranberries and I LOVE fresh cranberries so immediately decided to make some cranberry cinnamon buns. They were so tasty and gooey, especially with some cream cheese frosting. Make sure to follow the recipes and pics on Instagram using the hashtag #YesToCranberries.
Cranberry Cinnamon Buns
(modified from The New York Times)
Make the dough: Warm milk in a small pot over medium heat until it’s warm to the touch but not yet simmering. Add 2 tablespoons sugar and the yeast, whisking to dissolve. Let sit until it’s slightly foamy and starting to bubble, about 2 to 5 minutes. Meanwhile, combine flour, the remaining 2 tablespoons sugar, the baking powder and the salt in a large bowl. Mix with wooden spoon.
Add milk mixture, followed by the egg and, with a wooden spoon, stir to combine, just to eliminate any obviously dry or wet spots. Add melted butter and continue to stir until a shaggy lump of dough forms, again scraping down the paddle and helping things along with your hands if necessary to combine.
Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Knead dough until it’s smooth, shiny and elastic, about 4 or 5 minutes.
Lightly grease a large bowl with nonstick spray or vegetable oil and place dough in the bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and place in a warm, draft-free area. Let sit until the dough has about doubled in size, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Punch dough down to release any air that has built up. Cover tightly with plastic wrap, place in the refrigerator and chill the dough for an hour.
Once dough is chilled, turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface and roll to a 16 x 10-inch rectangle. The rolled dough will be about 1/4- to 1/3-inch thick.
Combine brown sugar, cinnamon and salt in a small bowl. Brush surface of the dough with half of the melted butter and sprinkle brown sugar mixture in an even layer, patting to make sure it’s sticking. Drizzle with remaining butter and add fresh cranberries.
Starting at the end closest to you (the long side of the dough), roll dough up into a tight coil, pressing lightly as you roll to make sure there are no gaps between the dough and the filling.
Cut log into even pieces, about 1 3/4-inch thick. Lightly spray a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray and arrange dough in three rows of three pieces each, with the spiral facing upward and with space in between each piece. Cover rolls lightly with plastic wrap and place in a warm, draft-free area until the rolls have puffed up a bit.
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place rolls in oven and bake until they are golden brown and fluffy and the sugar has started to bubble up around the edges, caramelizing on the sides of the buns, about 32 to 35 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the frosting by combining cream cheese, sugar, milk and food coloring and whisking until smooth. Keep in mind the glaze is to be applied while buns are warm, and it will thin out upon contact, so it’s best to err on the thicker side.
FOR THE DOUGH:
1 cup whole milk
4 tablespoons sugar
2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast (1/4-ounce envelope)
3 ½ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 ¼ teaspoons kosher salt
1 large egg, beaten
6 tablespoonsunsalted butter, melted
Nonstick spray or vegetable oil, for the bowl
FOR THE FILLING:
1 ¼ cups light brown sugar
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 cup fresh cranberries
FOR THE FROSTING:
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup confectioners sugar
2 tablespoons whole milk
hint of pink food coloring