Overnight Cinnamon Bun

How many times you walk into a mall or the food court and you smell something distinctly good and warm? Have you realize the store that is responsible is always located right by door the second you step in? Pat and I seldom go to the mall but when we do, we never leave without a cinnamon bun in hand. Once, Pat was suckered by the counter lady into buying 2 box of 20 buns because there was a 2 for 1 deal. We didn’t even make it out of the parking lot before Pat tore the box open and ate one. THEN, turn to me asking if I have a wet wipe. Like I would be carrying everything he needs in my bag!

In the end, we had to give one box away before we started sweating cinnamon and that was the last time Cinnzeo saw us.

So, I thought how can those people have so much power in creating something so nice and hypnotise you in handing over $5-6 from your purse in 2 seconds. It is not fair! However, Alton has the secret to the power and he shared it. So now, I HAVE THE POWER TOO. It is a Patrick proof method if I ever make him angry OR if he makes me angry and cut him off! HAHA!

I made this once from Alton’s Good Eats book but somehow, the filling seem to all pool onto the bottom after baking and my rolls would be left empty. There wasn’t a gooey melty centre of goodness like all cinnamon buns have and I facebooked Alton asking if I did something wrong. Turns out, he improved his recipe and asked me to give it a try. Can you imagine my hear doing a dance when I saw that he replied my message. Now, I respect this guy even more because he takes his time to reply to people’s questions.

I love to make this in the morning for breakfast and let the house smell so nice. The recipe can seem a lot of work and a lot of steps but really… this is so bloody worth it that you no longer have to go to the mall. Cinnzeo, you are never going to earn another penny from me!

Overnight Cinnamon Buns

Β Prep Time: 30 mins + 18 hours standing time

Cook Time: 30 mins

Yield: 8 Cinnamon Buns

Ingredients

The dough

  • 4 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 1 large whole egg, room temperature
  • 2 ounces sugar, approximately 1/4 cup
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon cold butter for lubricating baking dish [ I usually tear off the end of a butter stick and go to town lubing the dish]
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 15 ounces all-purpose flour divided into 10 ounces, 4 ounces and 1 ounce batches
  • 1 package rapid rise yeast, approximately 1/4 ounce or 2 1/4 teaspoons
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt

The filling

  • 8 ounces light brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon, ground
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

The icing

  • 2 1/2 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 5 1/2 ounces confectioners’ sugar

Steps

The dough

  1. Combine the egg yolks, whole egg, sugar, butter and buttermilk in the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk at medium speed.
  2. As the mixture comes together add 10 ounces of the flour, along with the yeast and salt and continue whisking until combined.
  3. Remove the whisk attachment and replace it with a dough hook. Add another 4 ounces of the remaining flour and knead on low speed for 5 minutes. At this point the dough should feel soft and moist but not sticky. If it is sticky, add a bit more flour (one ounce at a time). Knead on low for another 5 minutes or until the dough clears the sides of the bowl.
  4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface; and form dough into a smooth ball. Transfer to a large bowl that has been lightly lubed with the vegetable oil. Rotate the bowl so that the dough ball is evenly covered. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and set aside until the dough doubles in volume. ( I won’t state the time because it is different for everyone so just keep an eye on it)

Assembly

  1. Combine the brown sugar, cinnamon and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.
  2. Butter a 9 by 13-inch glass baking dish with the cold butter.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and gently shape into a rectangle with the long side nearest you. Then use a rolling pin to shape into 18 by 12-inch rectangle.
  4. Brush the dough with the the melted butter, leaving a 1-inch border along the top edge.
  5. Sprinkle the brown sugar mixture over the dough, also avoiding the top border.
  6. Gently press the filling into the dough. (If you tend to have hot hands, you may want to cover the filling with a layer of plastic wrap first.)
  7. Beginning with the long edge nearest you, roll the dough away from you into a tight cylinder. Firmly pinch the seam to seal and roll the cylinder seam side down. Very gently squeeze the cylinder to create even thickness.
  8. Using a serrated knife, gently cut the cylinder into 2-inch rolls; yielding 8 pieces.
  9. Arrange rolls cut side down in the baking dish; cover tightly with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator overnight, or up to 16 hours.
    • Because my hands are small and my rolling skills are quite terrible, my cinnamon roll doesn’t end up as tight and I would like to. At such, I like to arrange the cut rolls with the ends facing in, touching the adjacent roll. That way, when the roll grows, the ends will not come loose and unroll.

Baking

  1. Heat the oven to 200 degrees F/95C.
  2. When the oven has reached 200 degrees F/95C, turn it off and place the rolls in the turned-off oven. Let the rolls rise until they look slightly puffy, about 30 minutes. ( Silly to say but remember to remove your plastic wrap!)
  3. Without taking the rolls out of the oven, increase the oven temperature to 350 degrees F/175C and let the rolls continue to bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 190 degrees F. Remove the rolls and let cool while you make the icing.

Icing

  1. Whisk the cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer until creamy. Add the milk and whisk until combined. Sift in the powdered sugar, and whisk until smooth. Spread over the rolls and serve immediately.
Note: Keep leftovers, if any, on a plate covered with cling wrap. Nuke one for 30 seconds before serving and think of preservatives Cinnzeo adds to keep their buns soft for so many days.
Recipe from Alton Brown
Advertisements

Beer Can Chicken


For the past month, I’ve been working every day trying to get as much time banked as possible for my sister’s wedding in India next Jan. 2016 is going to be an insane year of traveling so I needed to find a way to get as much vacation time as possible. I am very lucky that I get to bring my work home on weekends (those baked goods for the boss is paying off) and be able to fit in housework or baking/cooking in between. It gives me a much needed break from mouse-clicking and I get to do what I love most at the same time!

I was browsing Buzzfeed friday night and they featured Beer Can Chicken. Their article didn’t use any seasoning but I thought I should give this a try. After some digging, I came to realised that 1. you need a dry rub. 2. This can be done on a BBQ but oven will give you more control.

I was skeptical when I popped the chicken in. No oil = no crispy skin. 1 hr 15 for a chicken to be fully cooked?! How does a chicken sitting up have even cooking?! the chicken didn’t even cooked at all halfway through. 350F seems a little too low of a temperature to roast… MAN I gave up and just walked away to let it do it’s own thing.

When the timer rang and I opened the door, the chicken was crispy brown, oil  pooled in the pan was sizzling and the smell was amazing. The best part? The skin. OHMYGAWD. The skin is so crispy, I was doing a little dance in the kitchen. πŸ˜€ I didn’t even need the gravy I made on the side.

If you ask me when this is compared to Alton’s B&B Chicken, it doesn’t require much prep at all BUT you have to crave the chicken.And if you butcher crave a chicken like me, just use your fingers! Forks and knifes are over-rated.

Pat went to town on the whole chicken and was still picking the bones at the end of it. Guess who only had a tiny bit of meat and some skin 😀

Beer Can Chicken

Prep Time: 15 Min

Cook Time: 1hr to 1hr 30 min

Yield: 1 Bloody Crispy Chicken

Ingredients

  • The rub
    • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
    • 1 tablespoon Kosher salt
    • 2 tablespoons onion powder
    • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
    • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
    • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
    • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
    • 2 teaspoons black pepper
    • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • Fryer Chicken (1.5-2kg /3-4 lbs)
  • A can of beer, any kind

Steps

  1. Set your oven to 350F/175C
  2. Adjust your oven rack so that it is sitting on the bottom second or third level. This is so that your chicken can fit into the oven sitting up. Your chicken is already decapitated, you don’t want to do it again.
  3. Combine the rub ingredients together in a bowel. It would be best to mix them and pour it into a shaker (like those chili flakes shaker at pizza joints). you can keep any leftover rub for 6 months in an air tight container so long it doesn’t come into contact with the chicken or your chicken-laced fingers.
  4. Get everything ready, set your rub, have your chicken ready, set your roasting pan next to you. Open the can of beer, drink 1/4 of it and set the can in the middle of your roasting pan/deep dish pan.
  5. Towel dry your chicken with paper towel. Rub the dry rub all over the chicken, make sure you get into the nooks and crannies like under the wing flap, between the thighs and even in the cavity!
  6. Insert the chicken over the beer can via the cavity so it is sitting up with the can shoved into its ass. Move the thighs stubs are facing you.
  7. Pop into the oven for 1hr
  8. Check on your chicken via instant read thermometer. The breast should read 165F/75C and the thigh 180F/82C. If it doesn’t, continue cooking via 10 min interval and check.
  9. Remove the chicken and tent it with aluminum foil to let it rest for 10 mins.
  10. Remove the beer can ( I had to had help for this.)
  11. Crave and enjoy!

Alton’s Cocoa Brownie

I do have to apologise for going silent over the last few weeks. Pat and I have gone camping and frankly, it has been hard trying to catch up on sleep, unpack, tidy the house, cook and work 7 days a week.

This week, things finally kinda went back to schedule. Pat’s no longer working crazy 12 hour days everyday and I manage to squeeze some time to work around the house while working at home. So, I thought maybe I should whipped something warm and fuzzy πŸ™‚

I have to say I do dislike making things that are chocolaty because the kitchen gets messy and when you use cocoa powder, it just gets 2x messier. But this brownie is so worth every clean up effort, top it off with vanilla ice cream while the brownie is still warm and who needs to order a lava cake in the restaurant anymore?!

These brownies are so good that I had that Ooohh and eyes rolling as I dig in with ice cream πŸ˜€

Alton Brown’s Cocoa Browndie

Prep Time:20mins

Cook time: 50mins

Yield: 9 Squares

Ingredients

Note that all ounces are by weight not volume for accuracy in baking.

  • 4 large eggs
  • 7 ounces granulated sugar
  • 6 ounces light brown sugar
  • 5 3/4 ounces natural cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
  • 2 1/2 ounces all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 ounces unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Steps

  1. Crank the oven to 300 degrees F.
  2. Lube an 8-inch square baking pan with non-stick spray. Trim a piece of parchment paper so that it fits just inside the baking dish with overhang on two sides and place it inside the pan.
  3. Beat the eggs with a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment at medium speed until fluffy and light yellow, 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine the granulated sugar, brown sugar, cocoa powder, flour and salt. Make sure you sift your coca powder and flour!
  5. Drop the mixer speed to low and slowly introduce the sugar mixture. Follow with the butter and vanilla. Continue mixing until you’ve got a nice, smooth goo.
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
  7. Bake for 45mins. Stick the tip of your instant read thermometer into the centre of the brownie to check if the targeted temp of 195F is reached. Careful not to touch the bottom of the pan! If not, continue baking for 5 mins.
  8. Remove brownie pan and let it cool for 3 mins. Yes, this step is important!
  9. Lift the brownie out of the pan using the parchment sling
  10. User a pizza wheel, cut the brownie into 9 pieces. Your pizza wheel will have minimal brownie sticking to it πŸ˜€
  11. Move the brownie onto a rack to cool completely.

Recipe from Alton Brown