Monday, January 25, 2010

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

Most of my holiday cooking plans were based around dinners and cookies, but I did have one big idea for Christmas morning breakfast. When I was little, we'd get up Christmas morning (early at first, and later and later as I got older) to open presents together. After that, my mom would cook a great big breakfast. Coffee cake, bacon, eggs ... an epic kind of breakfast. I was never a morning or breakfast person, but Christmas was always the exception.

I could have kept the tradition I love so much, but I found this recipe to try. And then I found out my brother in law (can I just call him my brother? OK thanks.) is a huge Cinnabon fan. That just sealed the deal.

What could prompt me to make cinnamon rolls? Pumpkin cinnamon rolls, of course.

Most recipes will call for just one cup of pumpkin puree, and a can is generally 14 or 16 ounces. So there's always a bit left over, that I'll typically put in the refrigerator with grand plans for the future, only to pull it out and discover it's turned fuzzy. Last time I put the leftovers (about a cup) in a box in the freezer. After all, there was a canned pumpkin shortage!

Even though this was properly thawed in the refrigerator days before, the pumpkin had a lot of water in it. (Cue foreboding music.) Which made it heavy, so the dough didn't rise much. Which meant when I pulled out the saran-wrapped dough roll a day or two later, it was squishy. As they baked, they seemed to dry out even more! After much panic I just put about a quarter of an inch of water in the bottom of the pan around the rolls. So, although they were sort of dry on the outside, they were still cinnamon rolly inside.

Would I ever make cinnamon rolls again? Probably, on special request. I don't think I would use whole wheat flour, and I'd have to reevaluate the pumpkin part. But these were otherwise easy to make.

Next year, I'm sticking to bacon, eggs, and coffee cake.

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