When I drink my coffee, I avoid adding sugar because I end up consuming 5 to 6 cups in a day. Yes! But I do like to nibble on something sweet, (not overly sweet). I do know that’s a kind of cheat; but I call it therapeutic indulgence which keeps me going. Cinnamon Roll Christmas Wreath fits into those coffee breaks of mine with such an elegant ease.
I know that for many of us Cinnamon roll sounds too much of work and time-consuming, but if seen clearly it’s not. Once the dough is kneaded (appro. 15 minutes) you will be keeping it to rest; when you can carry on with your day’s work. Then rolling and shaping part comes for another 15 minutes. And finally baking, once the dough has risen well. It’s done, you will have fantastically aromatic cinnamon bread ready.
This Cinnamon roll Christmas Wreath is all inspired by the vivacity of festive season in my house. I loved giving the basic cinnamon roll a wreath shape, though the flavors are almost the same. I just added flaked almonds; actually I would have gone with walnuts but Nitya dislikes walnuts in any form. Never mind – the almonds did a fantastic job as well.
Few points to remember before you bake:
1. Cinnamon roll dough will require yeast. Now this is very important – read it carefully. When I started baking with yeast, I used to buy those small packets of Dry yeast (Blue bird) ; and they worked perfectly decent with any recipe. They looked like small pellets of yeast and we are supposed to proof ( dissolve in warm water and bit of sugar ) them before use. Because the pellets are too big to break down in the ordinary kneading process.
Now-a-days I am very comfortable using Instant dry yeast ( Prime). This is like a blessing; Super easy to use and doesn’t require any proofing. These look like very fine granules. I totally recommend buying it. Or something you should try finding ; O.Kkkkkkkkeeee. If you don’t find the Instant Dry yeast,go ahead with dry yeast because that is very easy available. Any yeast you use – the amount will remain the same in the recipe.
2. A good cinnamon roll will require good dough. It’s a rich dough with lots of butter, eggs and sugar. It’s somewhere close to the brioche dough. But unlike Brioche,it’s a more forgiving dough to work with. Kneading can be done in a machine or with hands. Stand mixer or hand-held mixer with a hook attachment – both work great. They cut down the effort to half. Or you will have to work with those arms till the gluten develops.
One idea that comes to my mind : If you are kneading with hands: After you have incorporated all the ingredients for the dough and you have a sticky slimy stuff on your work area – Knead for few minutes and then leave it for 5 minutes. Start kneading again! this rest given to the dough helps the gluten strands to come together quickly. And of course will cut down on hard work.
3. I have made a crumb mix to spread rather then using melted butter and sugar and cinnamon. This ensures that the roll does not leak out sugar syrup while rising. This gave a more defined structure to my Cinnamom roll Christmas Wreath,.
4. Then the basic rules to measure the ingredients properly and don’t over bake the cinnamon wreath.
5. My idea was to create a wreath with cinnamon roll; My creative side was taking a lead hehehehe. But you can think and create something more interesting. Go ahead and don’t forget to share the idea. To get that shape – I have used a round baking mold and in the center kept a cup without the handle. Butter the baking mold and the sides of the cup properly. Then I built my cinnamon strips around them like a flower.
6. And don’t spread the glaze when cinnamon roll christmas wearth is very hot. I think the post is getting very long to read now. Let’s start with the recipe. There is another post on bread basics, where I have shared few interesting points to know about the bread and dough. The link is here Bread Basic
[recipe title=”Cinnamon Roll Christmas Wreath” Time=1 hour” difficulty=”Medium “]
1. 2 cups of all purpose flour (1/4th cup more for dusting the surface)
2. 5 gm of instant dry yeast
3. 1/4th teaspoon of salt
4. 3 tablespoons of sugar
5. 2 eggs (Take out bit of egg white for eggwash )
6. 1/4th cup of milk
7. 40 gm of butter
For the filling
1. 80 gm of light brown sugar
2. 2 tablespoon of all purpose flour
3. 1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon
4. 30 gm of cold butter
5. 1/4th cup Flaked almonds ( optional)
For the glaze
1. 1/4th cup of powdered sugar
2. Juice of one lemon
In a large bowl, mix the flour, sugar, salt, & instant yeast. Mix in the eggs, and milk and half of the butter. Knead the dough using a stand mixer or a hand held mixer with hook attactment and gradually add the rest of the butter. (Use the butter on your hand and work surface while kneading to prevent sticking). It’s a good idea to knead on the kitchen slab rather then in a bowl when kneading with hands.
You will have to knead for about 10 to 15 minutes or until you get soft dough that is smooth and elastic but not sticky. Shape the dough into a ball and place in a greased bowl. Cover with a plastic wrap and let it rise in a warm place until almost double in size. This might take anywhere between 1 to 2 hours.
For the filling : In a bowl stir together brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and almonds. ( Do save some to decorate on the finished wreath). Cut in cold butter with a fork until the mix is crumbly. Keep the filling ready before you roll out the dough.
Prepare the baking dish : keep a round glass or bowl ( make sure its oven proof) in the center to get the shape of a wreath. butter the sides and bottom.
Once the dough is risen dust some flour on the working surface and roll out the dough into a long rectangle almost ( 5ocm * 30cm) Be gentle with the rolling and don’t over dust the dough. Brush off the excess flour before spreading in the filling.
Genltly drop some bits of the filling on to the rolled out dough and use your finger to spread. Don’t worry if it’s not smooth and even. As the prepared wreath will go in the oven the filling will distribute evenly.
Slice the dough length wise into 4 equal strips using a pizza cutter. Fold the strips packing the cinnamon side in. As shown in the pictures above. Carefully encircle cup in the center of the baking dish with the strips. Cover with a plastic wrap and keep in a warm place to rise again.
When double in size , give a quick egg wash and sprinkle some flaked almond on the top. Bake in a preheated oven at 190* C ( 375*F) for 25 to 30 minutes. You will have a beautiful golden brown color on the top and if you lightly tap on the top of the wreath, it will sound hollow.
Once done let the wreath cool on a wire rack and remove the bowl in the center after 10 minutes of cooling.
To prepare the glaze simply mix the icing sugar with lime juice. and spread it evenly over the Cinnamon roll christmas wreath. Enjoy!