Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Making a Cinnamon Bun Dream Come True

Bacon Cinnamon Buns with Browned Butter Icing 
Once upon a time I dreamed of a cinnamon bun with delicious smokey bacon coiled inside and browned butter icing on top. Well, this holiday break I made that bun a reality and I have to say it was everything I hoped it would be (and more!)…

As part of Christmas Part II at my in-laws we broke out my husband’s brand new Baking Steel to concoct the Twelve Pizzas of Christmas. Italian sausage, pepperoni, Gorgonzola, peppadew peppers, anchovies, clams, roasted garlic, roasted tomatoes, and fresh basil were all had in various combinations. Alas, fatigue and fullness set in before we made it quite to twelve. After ten pizzas we called it quits for the night with the plan to make cinnamon rolls with the remaining dough in the morning. I just threw these buns together by feel, so sorry for the non-exact directions but I’ll do my best to detail what I did…

Bacon Cinnamon Buns with Browned Butter Icing
Serves 5

For the buns:
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
½ cup dark brown sugar (approximate)
2 tablespoons granulated sugar (approximate)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
5 strips of cooked thick cut bacon, (not too crispy you still want to be able to roll the bacon in the bun)
1 pound pizza dough
¼ cup whole milk

For the icing:
6 tablespoons unsalted
1 cup confectioner’s sugar

Move your oven rack to the center position and preheat your oven to 350°F.

Whisk dark brown and granulated sugars and 1 teaspoon of vanilla into the melted butter, you should have a nice thick paste. If it looks too soupy/buttery, add a few more tablespoons of dark brown sugar.

On a generously floured surface, roll out dough into a large square about ¼ of an inch thick. Use a pastry brush to completely coat the surface of the dough with your butter mixture.

Lay out the strips of bacon horizontally at even intervals, each bun will have a strip of bacon in the center (you may want to halve your strips of bacon lengthwise and lay them next to each other and slightly staggered for each bun so you get bacon throughout the whole bun. Use a serrated knife to cut five buns (making sure that the bacon is placed in the center of the dough).

Tightly coil the buns and place them in a greased 8 x 8 baking dish. Brush the buns with milk then bake until the tops are golden brown and crispy, approximately 45 minutes (keep a close eye on them, mine took I think closer to an hour but there were other people going in and out of the oven).

While the buns are baking brown the butter for the icing in a saucepan over medium heat, swirling the pan every so often. In a medium bowl whisk together butter with confectioner’s sugar and vanilla. Adding a little more sugar if your frosting looks too buttery. Cool the cinnamon buns for a couple of minutes then frost and serve warm.


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