Cinnamon Buns

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The hot days of summer feel like a distant memory, there’s a bit of nip in the air, it must be fall.  Which makes it safe to turn on the oven again.  This is family recipe from my sister-in-law.  I haven’t baked a batch for yonks and yonks, but somehow the cool weather inspires the desire for the comforting, spicy tang of cinnamon.  The recipe calls for quick-rise yeast, which means it’s not gonna take the whole day to make a pan.  If you’re new to working with yeast dough, Fleischman’s has some technique videos that will help you get started with confidence.

Maureen’s Cinnamon Buns

Dough

3 ¼ cup flour

1 pkg instant/rapid-rise yeast

¼ cup granulated sugar

½ tsp salt

¾ cup 2% milk

¼ cup water

¼ cup butter

1 egg slightly beaten

Filling

1/2 cup soft butter (more or less as needed)

2/3 cup brown sugar, packed

1 tbsp cinnamon

½ cup raisins

½ cup pecans (optional)

For the pan

4-5 tbsp butter

4-5 tbsp brown sugar

Reserve 1 cup flour.  Mix remaining flour, granulated sugar and salt in a large bowl.  Stir in yeast.  Heat milk, water and ¼ cup butter until hot to touch (about 54 degrees Celsius).  Stir hot liquid into dry mix.  Stir in egg.  Mix in enough reserved flour to make a soft dough that does not stick to bowl.  Turn onto floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.  Cover, let rest 10 minutes.  Roll dough to a 14” square.  For filling, spread the dough with soft butter.  Mix brown sugar and cinnamon together and sprinkle over butter.  Layer on raisins and pecans.  Roll dough jelly-roll fashion  and cut into about 15 buns.  Place in 9”x13” pan that has been prepared with butter and brown sugar. (Make a paste of butter and sugar and spread it into the pan.)  Arrange buns cut side down into pan.  Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rise till doubled, about 30 minutes.  Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 minutes.  Cool for 5 minutes in pan, then turn out buns onto a tray to cool completely.

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Raisin Spice Cupcakes (Birthday Cupcakes #2)

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In addition to the strawberry cupcakes I made for my niece’s birthday celebration, hubby made a request for some raisin spice cupcakes.  So we had some of each type on the birthday plate.  This is a kind of family heirloom recipe.  I have a handwritten copy of my grandmother’s, who got it from her sister, Julie, and my mom made it often when we were kids.  We know it as Aunty Julie’s Cake.  My sister and I usually have a bit of a laugh every time we make this cake, as it reminds us of the childhood memory we have of the time her and I decided to surprise our mom with some baking.  The recipe is written without any flour mentioned.  The adults knew you had to add flour, but the young teens didn’t know that yet 🙂  Needless to say, the first round was a complete flop!  I think we feed it to the chickens, hoping nobody would have to know about the fiasco.  We phoned Grandma to find out where we went wrong;  she was very kind to explain, but I’m sure she had a bit of chuckle too.  Besides including an amount for flour, I’ve also made a couple of other  minor adjustments over the years.

Aunty Julie’s Raisin Spice Cupcakes

½ cup butter

1 ½ cups brown sugar  (may be reduced to 1 cup)

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla

1 2/3 cups flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

½ tsp cinnamon

½ tsp nutmeg OR allspice

1 cup buttermilk

1 cup raisins

Cream butter and brown sugar. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well. In separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder and soda and spices. Alternate additions of flour and milk to creamed butter until all flour is incorporated. Gently fold in raisins. Pour into greased and floured 9”x 9” cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes.  Makes about 24 cupcakes using medium size paper liners.

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Carrot Cake Loaves

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I used my trusty carrot cake recipe, but doubled it and made four loaves, one to eat now, two to give, and one for the freezer.  I used buttermilk, as it gives a denser texture, which is nice in a loaf — you want to be able to spread a bit of jam and slap on a nice bit of Cheddar cheese without the slice crumbling to pieces.  I don’t normally add nuts to the carrot cake, but this time I did, as I knew who the eaters would be.  I whizzed  1  1/2 cups of pecan halves in the food processor till they were very finely chopped and stirred them in with the grated carrots.

Carrot Cake

2 cups flour

1 cup sugar

1 ½ tsp baking powder

¾ tsp baking soda

pinch of salt

2 tsp cinnamon

1 cup coconut

3 cups grated carrots

3 eggs

½ cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup milk (or ½  – 2/3 cup buttermilk, which give a denser texture)

Stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.  Add coconut  and grated carrots and mix.  In a separate bowl, combine eggs, oil and buttermilk.  Add to dry ingredients, stirring just until moistened.  Bake in two 8” layer pans, using parchment to line the pans, or butter and flour.  Bake at 350 degrees F for about 30 minutes.  This recipe will make about 18 cupcakes or 2 loaf pans (increase baking time to about 40 minutes for the loaf pans)

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Cowboy Cookies

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I have no idea why these cookies are called “Cowboy” cookies, maybe they taste their best out on the trail, or after a long hard day of wrangling cattle, but even if you’re not a range rider/cowboy, the cookies are still a delicious treat.  A hint of cinnamon adds a nice depth of flavor.    If I remember correctly, I think the original recipe called for chopped pecans, but I’ve substituted almonds.

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1 cup butter

3/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup white sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla (extract or paste)

2 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

1 1/2 cups rolled oats

1 cup chocolate chips

3/4 cup sliced almonds or chopped pecans

3/4 cup shredded coconut

Cream butter and sugars till mixture is light and fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly, then add vanilla.   In a separate bowl stir together flour, baking powder, soda and cinnamon.  Add flour mixture to creamed mixture in two orIMG_2211a three additions.  Then stir in oats, chocolate chips, almonds and coconut.  Roll dough into 1 1/2 ” balls, place on ungreased cookie sheets and flatten.  Bake at 350 degrees F for about 9-10 minutes, being careful not to overbake.  Makes about 3 dozen.

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Pumpkin Pie Muffins


What can I tell you about these muffins except that they’re good;  spicy with cinnamon, moist with pumpkin, chockablock with plump raisins. Go ahead and try them, you’ll like them.

Pumpkin Pie Muffins

2 cups of flour

1 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 can of  pumpkin pie filling ( from a 540 ml can)

1/2 cup canola oil

1/2 cup buttermilk

2 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract or paste

1 1/2 cup raisins, washed under cold water and drained

Stir together dry ingredients:  flour, sugar, baking powder and baking soda.  In a separate bowl, stir together wet ingredients, including pumpkin pie filling.  Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in wet ingredients and raisins.  Mix  just until moistened.   Using jumbo cupcake liners, divide batter into 12 portions.  Bake at 375 degrees for about 18-20 minutes until golden brown.

Morning Glory Muffins

More carroty goodness today,  in Morning Glory Muffins.  There are all sorts of additions you could make to these muffins, including pineapple and walnuts, but we like them like this:

 

Morning Glory Muffins

2 cups flour

1 cup sugar

2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp cinnamon

pinch of salt

2 cups peeled, grated carrots

3/4 cup raisins

1/2 cup shredded coconut

1 apple, peeled and grated

3 eggs

1/2 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup canola oil

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.  Blend together eggs, oil, buttermilk and vanilla in a separate bowl.  Add to dry ingredients, gently mixing just until moistened.  Divide batter into muffin tins, bake at 375 degrees F for about 20 minutes.  Makes 18 large muffins, using cupcake liners.

 

Carrot Cake

Fall is a good time for carroty goodness in your cakes and muffins.  I wish it were still fall here in our neck of the woods.  It feels like we went right from late summer to winter.  Maybe all the more reason to turn the oven on and fill the house with delicious aromas.

Carrot Cake

2 cups flour

1 cup white sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp baking soda

pinch of salt

2 tsp cinnamon

1 cup shredded coconut

3 cups grated carrot

3 eggs

1/2 cup canola oil

1/3 – 1/2 cup milk

In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients.   In a separate smaller bowl, stir together eggs, oil and milk.    Make a well in the dry ingredients and add the wet ingredients, stirring (use a folding technique) just to combine.  Pour batter into greased and floured pans and bake at 350 degrees F  for about 30  minutes till golden brown.  This recipe will make  two 8″ layers, OR about 18 large cupcakes.

Apple Custard Cake

The apples are falling off the tree, so it’s time to do some apple baking.  This is an old  tried and true recipe from the days when heavy cream was not something to be frowned upon.  2 % evaporated milk can be substituted for the cream with good results.  It’s delicious warm from the oven, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or a dollop of whipped cream.

Apple Custard Cake

Crust

2 cups flour

½ cup sugar

1 tsp baking powder

½ cup butter

1 egg, beaten

6 cups peeled and sliced apples

Mix together flour, sugar and baking powder.  Rub butter in until crumbly, then mix in beaten egg.  Press into greased 9”x13”.  Layer on sliced apples.

Custard

1 cup sugar

½ cup flour

½ -3/4 tsp cinnamon

½ cup melted butter

½ cup evaporated milk or heavy cream

1 tsp vanilla

Stir together sugar, flour and cinnamon.  Add melted butter, cream and vanilla, mixing till smooth.  Pour over apples.

Topping

¾ cup flour

¾ cup sugar

1/3 cup butter

Stir together flour and sugar.  Rub in butter till crumbly.   Sprinkle over custard.  Bake in 350 degree F oven for about 50 minutes, till golden brown.

Bran Bud Muffins

It’s so cold today, spring doesn’t feel like even a remote possibility,  – 30 degrees C,  so it’s a morning for muffins;  a carb treat and some additional heat in the kitchen from the oven.

Bran Bud Muffins

1 1/3 cup flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

3/4 tsp baking soda

1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

pinch of salt

1 1/2 cups bran buds cereal

1 cup raisins

1 1/4 cup buttermilk

1 egg

1/3 cup canola oil

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking power, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.  Add bran buds and raisins and stir.  In a smaller bowl, mix together egg, oil and buttermilk.  Form a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the milk mixture.  Mix together to form batter, stirring gently.  Divide batter into 12 jumbo muffin papers and bake for 15 minutes at 375 degrees F, till golden brown.

“Where have all the raisins gone?”  Have you ever bitten into your muffin and wondered just that?  There’s nothing more dispiriting (a sinking feeling, really)  than a muffin with all its  good bits lurking, hiding even,  in the  shadowy underworld at the bottom of the muffin.  Raisins (and other dried fruit) have a lot of concentrated sugar on their surface that will make the batter too tender around them and will cause the  sad downward spiral.  But there are a couple of simple  solutions.  In this recipe, the raisins are added into the dry ingredients, which coats the raisins with flour and so prevents the sinking of the raisins.  The other solution is to rinse the raisins in cold water and then add them into the recipe with the wet ingredients.  And there you go,  no more sad, sinking raisins.

Cinnamon Pull-Aparts

This is Aunty Janet’s recipe, which we often enjoy for breakfast when we stay at her house overnight. Great cinnamon bun taste without all the work!

Cinnamon Pull-Aparts

1 pkg  frozen buns (dough), 20 buns

3 tablespoons  butterscotch or vanilla pudding powder (not instant, save the rest for another time)

1/3 cup melted butter

scant 1/2 cup  brown sugar

1/2 cup raisins OR chopped nuts  (optional)

1 teaspoon cinnamon

Place the frozen buns in a greased bundt pan.  Sprinkle raisins or nuts over the buns.  Mix together the pudding powder, brown sugar and cinnamon.  Sprinkle sugar mixture all over the buns.  Over all, pour the melted butter, taking care to drizzle  evenly over buns and sugar.  Cover the pan with greased plastic wrap.  Let stand overnight (about 8-9 hours) until buns are fully risen (buns should be  to the top of the pan).  Bake at 375 F for about 20 minutes, until golden brown.  Cool 10-15 minutes and then invert pan onto serving plate.

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