December 23, 2008

Cinnamon Rolls to die for

I had the most delicious treat of my life the other day, a treat that I never in my life thought I would eat again. I had simply just written this item off and erased it from my mind. I am referring to cinnamon rolls. Warm, sweet, gooey, freshly baked cinnamon rolls.

Cinnamon rolls and I have a long history. I used to eat a pack of cinnastix from Cinnabon's every single time that I was in the airport during college. On many of these occasions I was going home for the holidays, or the summer, or headed back to school. I remember eating cinnastix in many different airports at many different hours of the day, but they always held some comfort for me. As a result, cinnamon rolls remind me of my college years. The years that I really grew up and became the independent, self assured person I am today. So you see, cinnamon rolls relate to a big part of my life. And when I found out I could no longer eat that delicious paper sack filled with cinnastix, I lost a tiny part of myself. Now my trips through the airports are lonely and usually filled with a growling tummy, since it is almost impossible to find something gluten free at the airport.

However, I came across this recipe for cinnamon rolls the other day while browsing the internet. When I first saw the recipe, I thought to myself, there is absolutely no way these will taste the same. But I decided to take a chance. Well low and behold I created something that I never thought my taste buds would get the opportunity to taste again in my life. These cinnamon rolls were crunchy, doughy, sweet, and simply delectable. I was in cinnamon roll heaven. I felt the comfort that I hadn’t felt since my college days. I shared them with everyone I could and not one person could tell they were gluten free. And for me that is the ultimate approval, when a non-celiac likes my treats I am as happy as can be. So I have to thank whoever came up with this recipe, because it definitely was not me. I found this recipe on a couple different blogs, so whoever is the true artist of this recipe....THANK YOU!!! You really are a cooking genius. Celiacs, go pre-heat that oven and whip these babies up, but make sure you whip up an extra batch because once you taste them; you won't be able to stop!

Cinnamon Rolls

~2 tablespoons butter
~1/4 cup sugar
~2/3 cup of milk, room temperature
~1 packet yeast (about 1 tablespoon)
~1 egg
~1/4 cup canola oil
~1/2 cup potato starch
~1 cup corn starch
~1/4 teaspoon baking soda
~2 1/2 teaspoons xantham gum
~2 teaspoons baking powder
~1/2 teaspoon salt
~1 teaspoon vanilla extract ***Note***

*1 - 2 tablespoons sugar, to use when you roll out the dough


~1/2 cup brown sugar
~1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
~1/3 cup chopped nuts - optional


~¾ cup powdered or confectionary sugar
~1 teaspoon vanilla extract
~milk to thicken

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.In medium bowl, combine shortening and sugar. Mix well. Measure warm milk and add yeast to milk. Whisk well to fully dissolve, then let sit for 30min. on stove as it is pre-heating. Add milk/yeast to sugar mixture after it has sat for at least 30min. Add remaining ingredients. Mix very well, being sure to remove all lumps. Dough will be incredibly soft, but that is perfectly normal. Take a piece of plastic wrap and lay it out so it covers a 13 1/2" x 13 1/2" square. Sprinkle sugar on the wrap. Lay ball of dough on top of that. Then pull out another sheet of wrap and gently lay over the dough. Pat the dough down into a roughly squarish pancake. Lift the top wrap up and then reposition it. Use a rolling pin to roll out the dough in between the two layers of wrap. Occasionally you'll have to lift and reposition the wrap because it gets "stuck" under the edges. You might have to occasionally flip the whole thing over. Make sure that when you're done you've got ABOUT a 13 1/2" x 13 1/2" square of dough. Remove top piece of wrap. Combine filling ingredients. Spread evenly across dough's surface. (Original recipe poster suggested leaving about a 1 1/2" sugar free edge because when you roll the dough all the sugar shifts and fills this in; otherwise all the sugar spills out).Use the bottom piece of wrap to lift the edge of the dough and start to roll it up forming a long cylinder. Start with the sugary edge, which will be the center of your roll and roll toward the sugarless edge. Then cut into 8 or 9 slices of similar size, about 1 1/2" wide. Place rolls into a greased round glass pie pan. Bake approximately 20 minutes, until tops are lightly browned. Combine powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk to make glaze. The amount of milk you use will depend on how thick you want the glaze to be. Stir until all lumps are dissolved. Drizzle over warm rolls if desired.
***Note***: I used vanilla beans instead of vanilla extract, as I had none at the house. I cut a whole vanilla bean open and used approximately 3/4's of the inside of the bean. Just scrape contents with a knife 2-3 times and that will be enough for the cinnamon buns. Be careful that vanilla does not clump together. Stir it evenly throughout the mixture.


Joelle said...

I posted this on another blog because it was the same recipe except that this recipe only had 1/2 C brown sugar and 1/2 tsp of cinnamon and the other recipe had 1 C brown sugar and 1 1/4 tsp of cinnamon. (which I think I should have tried) I am posting here too to see if I can get a response to my question.

Hmmm...I am not sure these came out the way they were intended. I question whether the altitude here has anything to do with it because the biscuits I tried today had a similar texture. My rolls came out EXTREMELY description would be oatmeal like, but light and airy; it wasn't dough that made a ball, but more like plopped onto the sugared surface. They baked up ok, and tasted pretty good. I like "cream cheese" frosting better than icing. Now the biscuits I baked should have been like drop biscuits, and they didn't drop they too spread like the cinnamon rolls. Tasted fine. So if anyone knows if high altitude needs adjusting like regular baking, PLEASE let me know; it is almost like you need less liquid rather than more (like traditional high altitude baking...hmmm).

Gluten Free Alaskan Goddess said...

Hey Joelle,

Yes the other recipe has more sugar and cinnamon. I found that I didn't need to add all of the filling in. Originally I made the whole entire thing(1 cup brown sugar,etc.) but ended up only using half of the filling, as I felt that if I used all of it it would be way too sweet. When you make the mixture it will be INCREDIBLY doughy and not even hold shape very well. However if you tuck the rolls close together after you cut them, I put them in a pie pan together, they will bake just fine.

I am also living at high altitude and found that they came out ok. How high are you living at? I will do some investigating about GF altitude cooking, as I am curious about it as well. I am not sure how long you have been baking GF, but often times things come out very strange and do not hold the consistency that items baked with wheat flour do. So sometimes I find myself questioning how exactly something will turn out when it looks like a big blob before being cooked, but I find that for the most part they always turn out great! Let me know where you are living and I am also going to do some research about high altitude baking! And thanks for reading my blog!