As well as all manner of sweet bakes, I love to make dough and breads. There’s something satisfying about the ritual of kneading, proving, shaping, proving again and baking, watching the ingredients transform before you. When it comes to breakfast, I tend to be a more impatient baker (I’m definitely not someone who can go without it!). The Violet Bakery’s take on yeast-free cinnamon buns is based on a recipe from the 1950s, when everything was about time and labour saving. A tasty shortcut to buttery, light, cinnamon sugar-filled pastries, they don’t taste quite the same as their traditional cousin, but take a fraction of the time to make and I think both varieties have their charms. To make them, you will need:
560g plain flour, plus more for rolling
2 tbsp baking powder
2 tsp fine sea salt
2 tsp ground cardamom
240g cold, unsalted butter, cut into cubes
300ml cold milk
caster sugar, for dipping.
1) Preheat the oven to 200C (180C Fan/ Gas 6) and grease a 12-hole muffin tray.
2) Measure the dry ingredients and cubes of butter into the bowl of a stand mixer.
Mix until you have a coarse meal.
Slowly pour in cold milk while the mixer is running, until the dough forms into a ball and comes away from the sides.
Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and leave to rest for a few minutes. Then fold the dough gently over itself once or twice to pull it all together. Rest for another 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the filling. You will need:
75g unsalted butter, melted (keep it in a warm place so it remains liquid).
250g light brown sugar
1 tbsp ground cinnamon.
Mix the light brown sugar and cinnamon until no lumps remain, then set aside.
Dust the surface lightly with more flour and roll the dough out into a large rectangle until about 5mm thick.
Brush the surface of the dough with the melted butter.
Before it hardens, sprinkle the cinnamon sugar onto the butter. You want a good, thick layer.
Roll the dough up, starting at the long side, keeping it as neat and tight as you can – gently tugging the dough towards you as you roll away from you helps maintain a taut roll.
Once it’s all rolled up, gently squeeze the roll to ensure the same thickness throughout. Use a sharp knife to cut the roll crossways into 12 even slices.
Take a slice of the cinnamon roll, peel back about 5 mm of the loose end of the pastry, and fold it back under the roll to loosely cover the bottom of the roll. Place in the muffin tray, flap-side down. Repeat with the remaining slices.
Bake the buns for 25 minutes. As soon as they’re out of the oven, flip them onto a wire cooling rack so they don’t stick to the tray.
Dip each bun into a bowl of caster sugar and serve straight away with a cuppa!
Don’t worry about getting a perfect roll or if the cinnamon sugar starts to bubble out – as you can see, mine look pretty rustic! This recipe can also be made ahead and then frozen in the tray until ready to bake for a quick breakfast treat.
What are you baking this weekend? Have you made cinnamon buns before?