Thursday, April 7, 2011

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls and Perfect Salmon

Last fall, Sarah and I decided we had to make pumpkin cinnamon rolls.  This involved me looking through dozens of recipes, until we found one we both approved of (meaning it had pretty pictures).  It surprisingly included whole wheat flour.  I thought they turned out really well, but were best right after they were baked.

And then for actual dinner, we made really simple salmon and vegetables, roasted on cedar wraps.  I've made this salmon so many times.

Recipe: Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting (from Good Life Eats)
1/4 cup warm water
1 package active dry yeast
1/3 cup warm milk
1 large egg, beaten
3/4 cup pumpkin puree (we used fresh)
1 tbsp melted butter
2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour (I just used regular white whole wheat flour)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp cardamom

1/2 stick butter (modified from original recipe)
2/3 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp each of allspice and ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp cloves

4 oz cream cheese
1 stick butter, softened
1 tsp vanilla extract
powdered sugar, to taste

Stir yeast into water in a large bowl, let rest about 5 minutes, until it blooms.  Stir in the milk, eggs, pumpkin, butter, whole wheat flour, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cardamom to the yeast mixture.  Beat vigorously for 2 minutes.

Slowly add the all purpose flour, a bit at a time, until the dough is stiff enough to knead.  Begin with 1 1/2 cups of flour and increase if necessary.  Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface.  Knead until smooth and elastic, adding flour if necessary.

Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, turning to coat.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, ~1 hour.

Combine the filling ingredients, except for the butter, in a small bowl.  Transfer the risen dough to a lightly greased work surface, and pat or roll into a 16" by 12" rectangle.  Spread softened butter over dough and then sprinkle with sugar mixture.

Roll the dough into a log the long way, it'll stretch to about 20 inches long.  Using a very sharp knife, slice the dough into 15 slices.  Place slices in a greased 9x13 baking dish.  Cover with a towel and let rise until almost doubled, ~45 minutes.

Bake in a preheated 375 deg F oven, until they're brown around the edges and golden brown across, ~20-30 minutes.

While rolls bake, prepare the frosting.  Beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla until smooth.  Add in powdered sugar, a little at a time, until desired consistency and sweetness is reached.

Frost warm rolls with cream cheese frosting and serve immediately.  Store leftover frosting in the refrigerator.

Recipe: Brown Sugar and Mustard Salmon
This really doesn't require a formal recipe.  Preheat oven to 400 deg F, and put salmon on cedar planks or foil, on a baking sheet.  Add some s&p to both sides.  Squirt some dijon mustard on, then sprinkle with brown sugar.  Bake for ~15-20 minutes, depending on thickness of fish.  Enjoy!

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