Saturday, April 29, 2006

In My Little Swirled

Sunshine streaming through the windows on a weekend morning tends to arouse in me the urge to bake.

That's just the way things are in the little world that is my kitchen. Whether it's a hearty loaf of wholesome bread to go along with a pot of soup made from fresh vegetable stock, cookies or other sweet treats, I find the peace of a Saturday or Sunday morning to be an invitation to fill the house with wonderful, tempting fragrances.

And for me, there are few fragrances more tempting than the combination of a fresh yeast dough with butter, sugar, and cinnamon.

That's right: cinnamon rolls.

Knowing that I needed/wanted something new for breakfast, and preferably something that would last several days, I thought cinnamon rolls would make the perfect start to the weekend.

This time around, I used the recipe from the Tassajara Bread Book and gleefully used as many local ingredients as possible: honey, dried milk, egg, and whole wheat flour. I even threw in some "local" orange peel when I livened up the usual cinnamon-sugar filling with it (and cardamom, too) and swirled that into the dough.

My morning chores and writing kept me well occupied during the three hours it took from start to finish to make this sublime pastry, but once the scent of cinnamon rolls baking started to pervade the house, I became all too aware of my growing appetite.

With a little more patience, my work and wait found a reward:

I think it's fair to say that these are, hands down, the best cinnamon rolls I have ever made, both in terms of shape/appearance and of flavor. Trust me -- I took an extra sample for thorough quality control inspection.

Life is very good, indeed, in my little world.


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