I made that cinnamon roll recipe I spotted on this blog via this awesome website. It seemed too good to be true--cinnamon rolls in less than an hour, and no yeast, no punching down, no letting them rise, nothing! I've adapted the recipe a bit--I didn't feel like dragging out a food processor, for example. As always, the italics = me.
For the Dough:
- 3/4 C part skim ricotta cheese (or cottage cheese)
- 1/3 C low fat buttermilk
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 4 T butter
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 C flour
- 1 T baking powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. baking soda
For the Filling:
- scant 2 T butter
- 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. ground allspice
- pinch ground cardamom
For the Glaze:
- 1 C powdered sugar, or to taste
- 2 T milk, give or take
- 1 tsp. vanilla
Heat the oven to 400°F. Grease the sides and bottom of a 8 or 9″ baking pan with cooking spray.
Combine the ricotta cheese, buttermilk, sugar, melted butter, and vanilla in a bowl and mix until smooth. Fold in the flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda until the dough clumps together (don’t overstir). The dough will be soft and moist.
Dump the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead it with floured hands 4 or 5 times until smooth (it really only takes 4-5 times). I didn't bother with the floured surface and opted to knead the dough inside the bowl--does anybody else do this? It seemed to work. With a rolling pin, roll the dough into a 12×15-inch rectangle. I discovered that 12×15 is exactly the size of my flexible plastic cutting board, so that’s a quick and easy way to size it. This is absolutely true; what a great tip!
Brush the dough with the melted butter, leaving a 1/2-inch border unbuttered around the edges. In a medium bowl, combine brown sugar and spices. Sprinkle the mixture over the buttered area of the dough and press gently into the surface.
Starting at a long edge, repeat, LONG EDGE, roll up the dough jelly-roll style. Pinch the seam to seal, and leave the ends open.
With a sharp knife, cut the roll into equal pieces (I got 8). Set the pieces, cut side up, in the prepared pan; they should fill the pan and touch slightly, but don’t worry if there are small gaps.
Bake until golden brown and firm to the touch, 20 to 28 minutes. Mine took 21, but we like our baked goods a little on the pale side. Set the pan on a wire rack to cool for 5 minutes. Run a spatula around the inside edge of the pan to loosen the rolls, and transfer them to a serving plate.
Since we don't have mascarpone cheese, I decided to go with my standard powdered sugar/milk/vanilla glaze. Add the milk and vanilla to the powdered sugar, stir, and adjust if too thin or too thick. It's always good. If you want a fancier glaze, please visit Don't Forget Delicious.
So, were these true cinnamon rolls? I'd say they're more like a biscuit/roll hybrid, and ain't nothin' wrong with that! They didn't have that yeasty aroma, but I guess that's probably because there's no yeast in them. But the cinnamon filling was outrageously good, right on the border between just the right amount and excessive. I had my doubts about the allspice and cardamom, and you could leave them out if you're a wuss too, but really, why are you so afraid of spices? The scent of the rolls baking woke up Jeff, who staggered into the kitchen from the bedroom.
Making them again? You'd better believe it.