Monday, November 28, 2011

Cranberry, Apple, Cinnamon Roll Cupcakes

I recently saw a recipe by Paula Dean for Apple Cinnamon Roll Cupcakes. They looked soooo good. BUT, lately, my palate has matured to a point where I like a LOT going when I bite into something. I don't want to be overwhelmed by a single flavor.

So I decided to mix it up a bit and make Cranberry, Apple, Cinnamon Roll Cupcakes! And MY OH MY! I made 3 dozen and in 4 days my husband, the boys, and I ate them ALL!!! They were delicious! 

 I used Paula's Recipe for the Bread/Roll. Then I mixed it up a bit. The recipe seems like it has a lot going on, but bear with me. It's not that bad. While your dough is rising, you can work on preparing your filling. And then while the cupcakes are baking, you can prepare the icing. We'll be having these for Christmas Eve Brunch this year!

Ingredients for Roll:
  • 2 cups 2% milk
  • 1 tablespoon (.5oz) active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 6 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup butter (room temperature)
Ingredients for the Filling:
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) of room temperature butter
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp of AllSpice
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3 cups finely cut chopped Granny Smith (or other tart apples)
  • 1 cup of chopped cranberries
Ingredients for the Icing:
  • 4 oz Cream Cheese (1/2 of an 8oz block)
  • 1/4 cup of softened butter
  • 1 1/2 cups of confectioners sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon of salt
Directions for the Roll:
  • In a small saucepan or a microwave oven, warm milk to about 110 F.
  • In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast and sugar in the milk.
  • Add salt and two cups of flour and beat for two minutes.
  • Beat in eggs and butter.
  • Stir in the remaining flour a half cup at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic (about five minutes).
  • Place the dough in a large bowl and cover it with a towel.  Set in a warm place and allow to rise for 40 minutes or until approximately doubled in volume.
Directions for the Filling:
  • Mix together the brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, salt, and allspice in a mixing bowl until smooth and combined. 
  • Using a spoon or spatula, fold in the apples and cranberries.
  • Divide the dough into two parts. Using 1/2 of the dough, roll it out into a large rectangle. 
  • Smooth the filling over the dough. Avoid the outer edge or you will have a mess. 
  • Roll the dough up to encase the filling and create a large log. 
  • Then take a very sharp knife and cut the dough into 3/4" rolls. 
  • Place them in paper lined cupcake tins. 
  • Repeat with the remaining 1/2 of the dough. 
  • 350 degree oven for 15 - 20 minutes or until tops are golden brown.
NOTE: this is a messy and juicy process. It creates a sticky mess while assembling and while baking. During baking, the apples and cranberries create quite a bit of juice. It is best to place your cupcake tins on a cookie sheet for the baking process to catch any juices. I DO NOT recommend using colored foil papers for this process as the liquid will remove the color from the foil and create a technicolor mess.

Directions for the Icing:
  • While the Cinnamon Rolls are baking, beat together the cream cheese, butter, confectioners sugar, vanilla, and salt until smooth and creamy. 
  • Drizzle or slather the tops of your cinnamon rolls in the cream cheese icing after they have cooled a bit but are still warm. 
REMOVE your cinnamon rolls from the cupcake tins before they cool completely to ensure that the cooled sugar does not glue the cupcake wrappers to your baking pans. 

And ENJOY!!! 

No comments: