Wow, I’m already up to four posts so far this month! I’m pretty proud of myself. I think it’s because these last few weeks have been really stressful, and when I get stressed I cook. Usually something involving chocolate. This time I was working on studying for a pharmacokinetics exam, but was having trouble sitting still and concentrating for any great length of time. This recipe actually worked out perfectly for that, because it has lots of wait time. So I could work on it for a few minutes, then study while the dough rose, take a break and do the next step, and then study while I was waiting through the next rise period and baking. Not only did I get some super cinnamon rolls out of it, but I think I did pretty well on the exam, too!
These turned out really well. I don’t usually make cinnamon rolls because they’re pretty labor-intensive, but this recipe wasn’t actually too bad. Like I mentioned before, there’s definitely a bit of wait time involved, but if you’ve got a whole afternoon to yourself and something to occupy you while you’re waiting, it works out perfectly. I really like the caramel icing on these. Usually I go for a cream cheese icing for my cinnamon rolls, but this was surprisingly different and delicious and went really well with the pumpkin flavor. These would be perfect for breakfast on Thanksgiving or Christmas day!
Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Caramel Icing
Adapted from: Recipe Girl
Makes: 12 rolls
For the rolls:
1/3 c. milk
2 tbsp. butter
1/2 c. canned pumpkin
2 tbsp. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 package rapid rise yeast
2 c. all-purpose flour
Pinch of cinnamon and cloves (optional)
For the filling:
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 tbsp. melted butter
For the caramel icing:
1/4 c. (4 tbsp.) butter
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 tbsp. milk
1 tsp. vanilla
Pinch of salt
1/2 – 3/4 c. powdered sugar
1) In a small saucepan, heat butter and milk until warm, but not boiling, stirring constantly. Set aside.
2) In a large mixing bowl, combine the pumpkin, sugar and salt. Add milk mixture and stir until smooth and well-mixed. Beat in the egg and yeast.
3) Add 1 cup of flour to the pumpkin mixture. Beat with an electric mixer for 5 minutes on low speed. Add the remaining flour and optional spices and mix well. The dough should be very soft.
4) Transfer the dough into a greased bowl. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
5) After dough has risen, punch the dough down and turn out onto a floured surface. Knead 4-5 times to form a smooth dough, adding only enough extra flour to make the dough manageable.
6) On a well floured surface, roll the dough out into a 12×10 inch rectangle.
7) In a small bowl combine the brown sugar and cinnamon for the filling. Brush the dough rectangle with the melted butter and sprinkle the cinnamon sugar evenly over it.
8) Beginning with one of the long sides of the dough, roll up jelly-roll style and pinch the seam to seal. With a sharp knife, cut the roll into twelve 1-inch slices. Place rolls cut side up in a greased 9 inch square baking pan.
9) Bake rolls at 350 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown. Let cool for 10 minutes.
10) For the icing, melt butter in a small saucepan. Add the brown sugar and milk and mix until smooth. Cook over medium-low heat for one minute, then take off the heat and stir in vanilla, salt and powdered sugar. If necessary, add more powdered sugar to reach the desired consistency.
11) Drizzle icing over rolls.