Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Sourdough Cinnamon Bread

There are many advantages of speaking more than one language obviously, but one became clear relatively recently when I started discovering a great deal of wonderful Italian food bloogers. I love to read in my native language, learn about restaurants and food trends, rediscover dishes, and feel a little nostalgia (ok, a lot!). One of the Italian blogs in my ever growing reading list is Profumo di mamma, a blog that Gaia only started this past August, but that in a very short time has become a great source of inspiration. When I saw these little sour dough panini I knew immediately that I had to try them. See, I have been keeping a starter in my fridge for almost a year now, but I rarely use it.

I started this mother culture when I was testing some recipes for bread guru Peter Reinhart's new book, which I can't wait to get my hands on, and I was sent the full instructions to start a mother dough. I had tried making a starter before, with various degrees of success, but this last one was a very powerful one, super active, not too sour, and I can leave it in the fridge abandoned for a month and it comes to life beautifully. Because of laziness I haven't used it much, but Gaia's recipe couldn't be passed.

Since cinnamon bread is really popular in my house, I decided to change the recipe a little to add cinnamon, which is used rarely in Italy, but it is something I grew to love after leaving in the States for few years, except when it is added to cappuccino. I slightly decreased the amount of sugar in the dough since I wanted to roll the dough in cinnamon sugar. Last change was the addition of honey, since I didn't have any malt in the house. I wanted to make little crescent rolls like Gaia, but in my notes I explain why it didn't work. The bread turned out very delicious, soft and full of cinnamon flavor, and the dough was not sour at all. Thank you Gaia for inspiring me to try this recipe. Now I have to keep the starter well fed so I can make these more often.

I know I am weird, but can you see a face on this roll like I do? A little deformed, but it is there.

I am submitting this recipe to yeast spotting, a fun weekly event organized by the talented Susan of Wild Yeast.

Sourdough Cinnamon Rolls
adapted from Profumo di Mamma

350 gr mother starter
150 ml milk
1oo gr sugar
1 large egg
1 tbs honey
400/450 gr all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
50 gr butter, softened
cinnamon sugar (5o gr sugar, 2 tsp cinnamon)
1 large egg for egg wash

Add all the ingredients, except the butter and the cinnamon sugar, to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the hook attachment. Mix the dough at low speed for 5 minutes to develop the gluten. Add the softened butter and mix for few more minutes until incorporated. Adjust the amount of flour to have a soft and tacky dough. Remove the dough onto a well floured counter top. Let rest for 5 minutes, then proceed with pulling and folding the dough like an envelope, which will develop the gluten. Let rest for 30 minutes and repeat the pulling and folding two more times. Allow the dough to double in size. Roll the dough to 1/2" thickness, brush with the egg wash, sprinkle with the cinnamon sugar (leaving one long edge free of sugar). Roll tight and cut into pieces 1' to 1 1/2" thick. Distribute the rolls onto a 10" well buttered cake pan. Let rise in a warm place until double (1h to 1h30m). Bake at 350F until nicely brown.

*I normally leave my doughs sticky because the folding is done with extra flour so by the time I am done with the second folding the dough has the right consistency, and is still wet, which works so much better in my opinion.

*I had to fold the dough a third time because it didn't look ready after two folds, I wonder if it had to do with the milk or the fact that it was a mother dough.

*Because of the wild yeast, the dough took a while to rise, next time I will let it rise in the fridge overnight to save time and so it will be cold and easier to handle.

*I initially planned to make all the dough into little crescents, but the dough was too soft, so I decided to try two crescents and the rest was turned into a cross between Monkey Bread and Cinnamon Rolls.


kellypea said...

I have *never* made sourdough (my favorite bread hands down) and have always wanted to. These rolls sound so wonderful! I'd seriously have difficulty not eating all of them.

Gaia said...

I'm so happy you liked my recipe and you tried it making your own adjustments!! Every add is an improvement.
I like your cinnamon bread.
I think that it took so much to rise, maybe because you sourdough had not been sufficiently refreshed with water and flour, before using it.
I discovered that this action should be done previously, 2 or 3 times, until it doubles in three hours...
Hope this can help!
A big hug and thank you!!

Laura said...

Kelly, you have to give sourdough a try, there are many sites out there to help you with it, one is wildyeast.

Gaia, thank you! I had just refreshed the starter, but maybe I should have done it twice. I just made more today for the weekend, let's see if it makes a difference since this will be the second feeding.

Susan/Wild Yeast said...

I absolutely see the face. To me it looks like a flying monkey from The Wizard of Oz. I'm sure it tastes a whole lot better, though :-)

lisaiscooking said...

I have a sourdough starter, but I've never used it for cinnamon rolls. But, now I will! These look incredible. (And, yes, I see the face!)

Laura said...

Susan, you are right! I thought I saw something resembling an ape too, good eyes!

Lisa, try them, the natural yeast makes them last a long time too.

zorra said...

Wow, this looks gorgeous! Need to bake it soon! Just perfect.

Pippi said...

Beautiful recipe!!! Te la copierò ! :-)
ciao Pippi

Julia @Mélanger said...

Oh my. The crumb on that bread just looks divine! Delicious.

Jill @ Jillicious Discoveries said...

I'm so behind on blogging--and then I saw that I've missed a couple of your posts! Beautiful bread--I love the idea of sourdough cinnamnon bread! It looks and sounds DELICIOUS! Well done Laura! :)

Genny said...

sono i miei preferiti!

Julia @Mélanger said...

Back again. So I just tried to make my own sourdough starter without success. I will have to trawl through your reference here again with a fine tooth comb, and try again!


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