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Cinnamon buns

Cinnamon buns
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  • Cinnamon buns

    Post #1 - February 21st, 2007, 5:41 am
    Post #1 - February 21st, 2007, 5:41 am Post #1 - February 21st, 2007, 5:41 am
    After a long, winter weekend with a couple of ski and skating adventures, our supplies of frozen cinnamon buns were seriously depleted and I thought I’d document the process of making their replacements.

    For the sake of LTHForum, I decided to gild the lily a little by replacing our normal dough recipe with a luxurious version known as “karlsbader” dough. Karlsbader dough is basically our normal dough that’s been enriched with extra butter (folded in at room temperature) and egg yolks. The butter and egg yolks make for extremely light and fluffy dough.

    (One disclaimer: I’m not a serious baker and my knowledge of the proper terms for the process I’ll be describing will be sorely lacking. I’m hoping that some of the boards experienced bakers will help me right any and all of my blunders…)

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    First, the ingredients (left-right, top-bottom): whole milk, cinnamon, eggs, cardamom, butter, “vanilla-sugar”, sugar, yeast, flour and sliced almonds. Not pictured: raisins and “pearl” sugar.

    I started by making a “pre-dough” from 375 grams of flour, 25 grams of sugar, 50 grams of fresh yeast and 250 grams of milk. I apologize for the metric weight measurements but I make these by weight and decided not to convert as I believe most bakers are accustomed to metric weights.

    Pour the flour and sugar to your mixing bowl and dissolve the yeast in the milk. Add the yeast/milk mixture to the flour/sugar and mix on low for about 10 minutes.

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    O.K., some notes to these steps. The flour I used is a pretty hard, quality flour from a Stockholm-area producer. It’s made from biodynamically grown wheat which, personally, doesn’t say much more to me than that the producer cares a lot about his/her product (and that says a lot!). The yeast is a 50 g cake of fresh yeast that has been cultured specifically for high-sugar dough. The milk is ecological and hasn’t been homogenized so the fat content is somewhere between 3.8-4.5%. I use an Electrolux Assistant (aka “DLX”-mixer in the States?) mixer. The Electrolux is a fantastic machine when it comes to kneading bread as it very closely recreates the action of hand-kneading and is nearly impossible to overheat or overload.

    After mixing, let the pre-dough rise and rest. For me, it had just-about doubled after about an hour:

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    Now it’s time to for the final mixing. To the pre-dough, add 70 grams of sugar, 3-4 grams table salt and a few teaspoons of cracked cardamom seeds.

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    The use of cardamom in sweet bread (especially together with saffron) is something that strikes me as exclusively Scandinavian. I can only guess that past generations of Swedes decided to gild the lily themselves when making these then-luxurious (made with fine, white flour and sugar) buns by adding their most treasured spices. It’s a wonderful taste combination and while the use of cardamom is optional, I strongly recommend it.

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    This is about the texture you want in your cardamom:

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    Turn the mixer on low to incorporate the sugar, salt and cardamom into the pre-dough. Start adding your egg yolks (4 total), one at a time:

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    To this, add 200 grams milk and mix:

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    Add 500 grams flour and, finally, start incorporating 125 grams of room temperature butter:

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    At the end of about 10 more minutes of mixing, you should have a beautifully elastic, semi-wet dough:

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    This needs to rest and rise for another 45 minutes, or so, until you get:

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    Finally, it’s time to make the buns! Start by dividing the dough into three pieces. One at a time, roll these out and brush with about 35 grams of room-temperature butter:

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    Make a mixture of 2 tablespoons cinnamon and 1/3 cup sugar. Roll one piece of dough into a rectangular shape and sprinkle about 1/3 of the cinnamon-sugar mixture over the buttered dough. Spread some raisins over the cinnamon sugar and dust with a small amount of vanilla-sugar. Roll up, jelly-roll fashion, and seal the end as well as possible to the roll. Cut, then, the roll into 1-inch slices:

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    Place on parchment-lined cookie sheets and let rise for about 45 minutes (or until doubled). I tend to flatten the buns a little and even try to push down the middle so that they don’t rise too unevenly.

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    After they’ve risen to about double-size, brush with egg wash and sprinkle each bun with pearl-sugar and sliced almonds.

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    Lock, booby-trap and otherwise restrict all entrance to kitchen. Place, one batch at a time (I prefer non-convection baking for these) in a hot (500 degrees F) oven and bake for about 8 minutes.

    At approximately the 3-minute mark, the first curious family members/roommates/neighbors will begin to appear and attempt to force your defences. By about the 7-minute mark, things can get ugly…

    8-minutes:

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    I’ve never been to Ann Sather’s or any other purveyor of Swedish pastries so I’m not certain as to how this version compares (i.e., if they use pearl sugar or almonds). I, however, highly recommend baking Swedish-style cinnamon buns yourself if, for nothing else, the wonderful, irresistible smell it creates. If you do decide to go to the trouble, use this recipe for “Karlsbader”-dough if you’re looking for an extremely light, fluffy and rich version.
  • Post #2 - February 21st, 2007, 7:59 am
    Post #2 - February 21st, 2007, 7:59 am Post #2 - February 21st, 2007, 7:59 am
    Cardamom's used in a couple of the coffee cakes at Swedish Bakery and I love the slightly spicy, more exotic and complex flavor it gives them. I've never tasted it in cinnamon rolls here but I'm suddenly tempted to make some... thanks for another great post, worth it for the package labels alone.
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  • Post #3 - February 21st, 2007, 8:29 am
    Post #3 - February 21st, 2007, 8:29 am Post #3 - February 21st, 2007, 8:29 am
    Bridgestone, Thankyou, thankyou thankyou!
    Man : I can't understand how a poet like you can eat that stuff.
    T. S. Eliot: Ah, but you're not a poet.
  • Post #4 - February 21st, 2007, 9:27 am
    Post #4 - February 21st, 2007, 9:27 am Post #4 - February 21st, 2007, 9:27 am
    I made orange-chocolate sticky rolls this weekend, from an old Bon Appetit recipe. I love orange and chocolate together, and even our wedding cake had this combination. However, I didn't love the rolls. The chocolate addition was just too heavy, maybe more for a dessert than a breakfast food. The orange dough was lovely though, and now that I've seen the suggestion for cardamom in the dough, I think I will revise and make an orange-cardamom dough with cinnamon/sugar/raisin filling instead.
    Beautiful pictures and thanks for the idea!
    "Food is Love"
    Jasper White
  • Post #5 - February 21st, 2007, 9:38 am
    Post #5 - February 21st, 2007, 9:38 am Post #5 - February 21st, 2007, 9:38 am
    Wow! That's one helluva mixer.
  • Post #6 - February 21st, 2007, 11:40 am
    Post #6 - February 21st, 2007, 11:40 am Post #6 - February 21st, 2007, 11:40 am
    aschie30 wrote:Wow! That's one helluva mixer.
    I was thinking the same thing. Leave it to the Swedes to design appliances that are functional and very cool looking as well. Too bad they cost $500-$750 over here. I would have to make a ton of cinnamon buns to justify that purchase.
    Last edited by d4v3 on February 21st, 2007, 11:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #7 - February 21st, 2007, 11:40 am
    Post #7 - February 21st, 2007, 11:40 am Post #7 - February 21st, 2007, 11:40 am
    HI,

    The pearl sugar used in this recipe I have seen at IKEA for around $3 a box.

    Fantastic post! Do you freeze them already baked? Have you frozen them, then let them sit overnight to defrost and rise, then bake first thing in the morning?

    Thank you for fighting off your family, friends and neighbors to get the all-important photos for your friends at LTHforum.

    Best regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #8 - February 21st, 2007, 1:09 pm
    Post #8 - February 21st, 2007, 1:09 pm Post #8 - February 21st, 2007, 1:09 pm
    Thanks everyone for the kind words.

    The mixer is an investment and I haven't used it as much as I'd convinced myself I would before I purchased it. However, it's built to last and I do believe that I'll find myself using more when I eventually get more free time to pursue interests and obsessions.

    Cathy2 - I've only ever tried freezing these buns after baking. We usually zap them carefully for a few seconds in the microwave if we're in need of a quick fix. You're idea of freezing the raw dough for early morning baking is interesting, though. Perhaps some of the board's bakers can help us out?
  • Post #9 - February 21st, 2007, 1:38 pm
    Post #9 - February 21st, 2007, 1:38 pm Post #9 - February 21st, 2007, 1:38 pm
    HI,

    Gary and his wife were gifted with frozen croissants from Williams and Sonoma. They were instructed to take the croissants out the night before to defrost and rise during the night. They were very pleased with the outcome.

    Your cinnamon buns really looked outstanding.

    Again, thanks!

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #10 - January 23rd, 2008, 3:05 am
    Post #10 - January 23rd, 2008, 3:05 am Post #10 - January 23rd, 2008, 3:05 am
    Made another batch of cinnamon buns that I thought I'd post. The recipe was a little different, though - as well as the forms of the finished buns.

    Ingredients:

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    2 ½ cups whole milk (this is non-homogenized milk so it's actually between 3.8-4.5% fat), 1 ¾ oz cake yeast, 2 tsp salt, 1 cup sugar or syrup, 2 tablespoons cardamom seeds, 50 oz (about 6 cups maybe?) high protein flour, 7 oz softened butter (14 tablespoons?), 2 eggs.

    You’ll need the following ingredients for the filling, too:

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    sliced almonds, butter (about 3-4 oz), an egg, 2-3 tablespoons cinnamon, about 1 cup of sugar, raisins, pearl sugar (not pictured!)

    This recipe is pretty easy but requires a sturdy mixer. Simply add all of the ingredients to the mixing bowl and mix! Well, almost… I started by grinding the cardamom roughly (it should be a little chunky):

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    Next, add the ground cardamom to the flour, sugar/syrup, milk, yeast and eggs. Mix. It’ll be dry and your mixer will probably give you some angry glares.

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    Add the eggs and lumps of the room temperature butter. Listen as your mixer breathes a sigh of relief. Mix for about 10 minutes on low before adding the salt and mixing for another 10 minutes. When done, it should be very elastic:

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    Let the dough rest for at least an hour. I prefer to let dough rest at room temperature or even slightly cooler. My theory is that the flour’s gluten relaxes while the yeast saves it’s energy for a little later…

    When you are ready to roll out the dough, dump it out on a lightly floured work surface. This dough is rich enough to not stick too badly without much flour.

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    Divide into four equal pieces…

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    …and roll one piece out into a rectangle, about ¼ inch thick:

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    Spread about ¼ of the topping butter on the rectangle.

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    Sprinkle with about ¼-1/3 cup cinnamon sugar and dot with raisins:

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    Roll up the rectangle tightly (lift and stretch the elastic dough as you wrap to make a tight roll) and pinch carefully shut.

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    To make a coffee-cake style loaf, snip the loaf at 1-inch intervals and at an angle:

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    Pull the snipped lobes in alternating directions, flatten and place the loaves on a paper-lined baking sheet.

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    For buns, either slice the rolls in 2-inch lengths and depress in the middle:

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    Or, fold the buttered and sugared rectangle in half…

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    … and cut into two-inch strips. Cut then each two-inch strip nearly in half again but leave them connected at the folded end:

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    (A picture is worth a thousand words, right?)

    Hold the folded end in on hand and wrap the strands around your fingers a few times. Finish by making a knot of the whole bunch. Place in muffin cups.

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    Now is when you want the yeast to start working. Let the shapes and loaves rise for an hour or so in a warm environment. Decorate with egg wash (one egg, one tsp salt and 2 tablespoons water), sliced almonds and/or pearl sugar.

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    Bake the buns at 450 degrees for 6-8 minutes. After the buns, lower the oven temperature to 400 degrees and bake the loaves for about 20 minutes.

    Pour yourself a cup of coffee or milk and enjoy!

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    The sun had set by the time the loaves had cooled so I didn’t have any natural light for the final picture of their interior:

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  • Post #11 - January 23rd, 2008, 3:15 am
    Post #11 - January 23rd, 2008, 3:15 am Post #11 - January 23rd, 2008, 3:15 am
    For the recipe index - Cinnamon buns:

    2 1/2 cups whole milk
    1 3/4 fresh yeast
    2 tsp salt
    1 cup sugar
    2 tablespoons cardamom seeds
    50 oz flour
    7 oz softened butter
    2 eggs

    For topping:
    sliced almonds
    softened butter (about 3-4 oz)
    2-3 tablespoons cinnamon mixed with 1 cup of sugar
    an egg (plus 1 tsp salt and 2 tablespoons water) for eggwash
    raisins
    pearl sugar

    Grind the cardamon roughly. Place flour, milk, yeast, sugar and cardamon in a mixing bowl and mix until incorporated. Add the eggs and the softened butter. Mix/knead for 10 minutes, add the salt and knead for another 10 minutes. Let dough rest at room temperature for about an hour.

    Divide dough into 4 equal pieces. Roll out each piece into a rectangle that is roughly 1/4 inch thick. Smear the rectangle with about 1 oz of the softened butter, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and raisins. Roll up tightly and shape into either loaves or slice into 1-inch pieces and form into buns.

    Let the formed loaves and/or buns rise in a warm environment for about 1 hour. Brush with egg wash and decorate with pearl sugar and/or sliced almonds. Bake buns at 450 degrees for 6-8 minutes and loaves at 400 degrees for approx. 20 minutes.
  • Post #12 - January 23rd, 2008, 6:47 am
    Post #12 - January 23rd, 2008, 6:47 am Post #12 - January 23rd, 2008, 6:47 am
    I have lurked, enjoying your posts and pics for way too long. This encomium is for both this thread and for the myriad of other posts as well: thank you from the bottom of my food-loving heart. And put me down for a half dozen of your cookbooks whenever and wherever they appear!
    Gypsy Boy

    "I am not a glutton--I am an explorer of food." (Erma Bombeck)
  • Post #13 - January 23rd, 2008, 7:23 am
    Post #13 - January 23rd, 2008, 7:23 am Post #13 - January 23rd, 2008, 7:23 am
    Thank you, Gypsy Boy, thank you!
  • Post #14 - January 23rd, 2008, 8:05 am
    Post #14 - January 23rd, 2008, 8:05 am Post #14 - January 23rd, 2008, 8:05 am
    You're not a serious baker??! You've got to be kidding. Those look fantastic. Nicest looking cinnamon rolls I've ever seen. I thought you were a professional. I might have to throw away my Peter Reinhardt recipe.
    i used to milk cows
  • Post #15 - January 23rd, 2008, 8:24 am
    Post #15 - January 23rd, 2008, 8:24 am Post #15 - January 23rd, 2008, 8:24 am
    Another amazing Bridgestone post. I really want a cinnamon roll now.

    Thanks for sharing. I might just have to try this someday.
  • Post #16 - January 23rd, 2008, 8:51 am
    Post #16 - January 23rd, 2008, 8:51 am Post #16 - January 23rd, 2008, 8:51 am
    Thank you!

    Please do give this recipe a try and don't be intimidated by the use of a powerful mixer. My wife makes excellent cinnamon buns with virtually no kneading or adding of salt half-way or folding in butter, etc... Just mix everything at once (using melted butter instead of soft) and give it some extra rest and rise time so that the gluten settles down on its own. If it's of help, I've read that the substitution of active dry yeast for fresh is one package (2 1/4 tsp) active dry for each 2 ounce cake. Info on Chicagoland sources of pearl sugar can be found here.

    One thing that many Swedes living in the States gripe about is the difficulty in recreating cinnamon buns like they believe they can/could make in Sweden. They speculate about differences in ingredients between Sweden and the States (hardness of flour, types of butter, etc.). I'd love to read about any attempts to make this recipe - successful or failure - to see if there is any truth to these claims.
  • Post #17 - January 26th, 2019, 6:33 am
    Post #17 - January 26th, 2019, 6:33 am Post #17 - January 26th, 2019, 6:33 am
    Hi,

    I saw last night Lost Larson did a WGN cooking cameo making Cardamon buns. This link not only has the recipe, it has the video with the useful demonstration on know-how. Many of the techniques highlighted in Bridgestone's post are in this video.

    Plus Bobby Schaffer explained the name of the bakery: his Grandfather changed the family name from Larson to Schaffer. If the naming legacy had not been tampered with, he would be a Larson today, thus Lost Larson.

    Regards,
    Cathy2
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #18 - January 26th, 2019, 9:42 am
    Post #18 - January 26th, 2019, 9:42 am Post #18 - January 26th, 2019, 9:42 am
    Thanks for posting Cathy. I adore cardamom and this is absolutely the best cardamom pastry I've ever tasted, in no small part due to the incredible dough they make at Lost Larson. I will be making these soon!

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