Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Giant Cinnamon Roll of DOOM!

Cinnamon Roll Cake

What is that monstrosity? Is it a cinnamon roll or is it a cake?

It's evil. Pure evil, that's what it is. Or one giant cinnamon roll... cake.

See, yesterday I was sitting there pondering my next baking exploit as I often do, and I was torn between cinnamon bread and some kind of cake. I wanted something yeasty and yummy for a cold day, but a loaf of bread just didn't seem interesting enough at the time. Then I remembered a photo I had seen of some coffee cake shaped like a cinnamon roll. Perfect!

Of course, one slice of this isn't any different than having a single cinnamon roll, but something about a GIANT cinnamon roll makes me feel like a little kid about to get away with something I shouldn't.

If you're anything like me though, it will be very hard to have just one slice of this thing. That's where the evil comes in. The edges get a little gooey and caramelized like a sticky bun, and besides the nice crunch of the top, the whole thing is like the sweet, tender center of a cinnamon roll which I think is everyone's favorite part. Drool....

Cinnamon Roll Cake

Giant Cinnamon Roll Coffee Cake

1/3 cup warm water
1/3 cup milk
1 Tbsp active dry yeast
1/2 cup (4oz) unsalted butter
3 Tbsp sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
3 cups all purpose flour

5 Tbsp very soft unsalted butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp orange zest
pinch of salt

1 cup powdered sugar
2 Tbsp milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Cinnamon Roll Cake

1. Whisk together the water, eggs, sugar and yeast in a large bowl. Set aside for 5-10 minutes, or until it gets a little bubbly and foamy.

2. Heat the milk and butter in a small saucepan over medium heat until the butter is melty and soft. It shouldn't be too hot at this point, but just check that it is warm and not HOT before proceeding.

3. Whisk the milk & butter mixture into the yeast mixture and combine. Add the salt and nutmeg and whisk until blended.

4. Add 1 cup of flour and give the dough a stir to combine. Add the remaining flour and mix until a dough begins to form. Transfer the dough to a well floured surface (it will be sticky) and knead for about 5 minutes, or until smooth and slightly elastic, adding small amounts of flour as needed to keep it from sticking. Place the dough into a large, buttered bowl and allow to rise in a warm place for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until doubled in size.

5. Filling: Meanwhile, whisk together the white sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, orange zest and salt in a small bowl for the filling and set aside.

6. Once the dough has risen, gently deflate it and return it to a floured surface. Shape into a rectangle and using a rolling pin, roll it out to 9 x 30in. Smear your very soft butter across the surface of the dough. Sprinkle your sugar filling evenly over the buttered dough.

7. Roll the dough from the long side to make a tight roll. Use a knife or bench scraper to cut the roll lengthwise.

8. In a well greased or parchment lined 9 to 10 inch springform pan, begin to coil one half of the roll around itself starting from the center. Pinch together the end of that half to the other half and continue coiling that around until you have one big spiral. (I actually did this on a large cookie sheet first and then transferred it to the springform pan. Do whatever works best for you)

9. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and allow it to rise for about 30 minutes, or until puffy. Preheat the oven to 350F and cook for about 30 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through. Whisk together the powdered sugar, milk and vanilla until a smooth icing forms. Drizzle over the baked cinnamon roll after it has cooled for 10 minutes or so. Enjoy!