Sunday 13 May 2012

Fresh from the bakery: Charlie's cinnamon rolls

If you visited the Christmas and Easter Markets at Krogerup and tasted the delicious freshly baked 'kanelsnegle' (cinnamon rolls) still warm from the bakery and oozing with cardamon, cinnamon and icing, you will already know what the fuss is about. If you have since been hankering for a worthy accompaniment to your morning coffee, then look no further. Aarstiderne have 'released' the cinnamon roll recipe on facebook and so this week I donned my apron and set to. I am delighted to bring you a tried and tested translation of Charlie's recipe and I think you'll agree that if you can't make it up to Krogerup for a taste of the real thing, then this is the next best option.

This is the third cinnamon roll recipe that I have tried since coming to Denmark and they all have one thing in common: they are incredibly simple to make. If you're not baking for a big event or if you are short of time on the day, there are ways to adapt the recipe too so that the rolls can be prepared in advance or frozen for future baking. It's very versatile. So, without further ado, here it is:

Charlie's cinnamon rolls

To make about 15 rolls, you will need:
For the dough:
200 ml milk
25g yeast
1 tbsp sugar
175 g butter
1 heaped tbsp ground cardamon
1 beaten egg
500-600 g plain flour ('hvedemel')

For the filling:
3 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground cardamon
250 g softened butter
200 g raw cane sugar

Icing or chocolate to garnish

To make the dough, start by melting the butter and then let it cool. Warm the milk a little and then stir in the yeast until it dissolves. Add the sugar, cardamon, the beaten egg and the melted butter - in that order. Finally mix in the flour (I found about 550g was enough) to make a dough and knead the dough until it is soft and smooth but not sticky.

Leave the dough in a bowl to rise for about 1 hour at room temperature or overnight in the fridge. (As I mentioned, at this point the dough can be made ahead of time and then the rest of the recipe left for the next morning.)

When the dough has risen, knock it down and roll it out to a rectangle about 1½ cm thick. To make the filling, mix all the ingredients together and spread the mixture over the dough. Roll the dough as you would to make a swiss roll and then cut the 'snails' about 2 cm thick.

Charlie baked the rolls on trays with each one in an individual paper muffin case. If you can't find the large muffin cases then she suggests using baking paper instead. I have found that using baking paper can mean that the pastry spreads during cooking and the filling can escape.

An alternative is to bake a dish of cinnamon rolls. Place them in a greased dish with a little space between each one. This way any filling that escapes during baking doesn't get burnt (or lost!). This is me going 'off piste' but I do find that the rolls are easier to transport this way too (if you're making a batch to take to brunch, for example).

In any event, once you have decided upon your preferred method of baking and the rolls are ready, leave them to rise for 30 minutes at room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 200º C and then bake them for about 12 minutes. If you are baking them in a dish, they may take a little longer. Either way, this is a good time to start preparing a cup of your favourite coffee...

When they are ready, garnish the cinnamon rolls with icing or chocolate. It's best to decorate them a couple of minutes after they come out of the oven whilst they are still warm (but not too hot) and so that the icing or chocolate melts in. I use 2 tbsps of just-boiled water and mix in 100g of icing sugar and then drip it over the pastries. After that, it's completely up to you how long you wait before diving in!

As I mentioned earlier, I think that the pre-baked rolls can be frozen for future use. Again, I am going off piste here but after they have been left to rise a second time, the rolls can be frozen on a tray and then stacked (separated by squares of baking paper) in a ziploc bag. When you are ready to use them, defrost them overnight and then bake them in the morning.

If you haven't yet been to visit the farm at Krogerup or tasted the delicious farm kitchen cooking and baking then the launch party for Soil to Stove on 27 May 2012, will be the perfect opportunity. This will be the official launch event for this blog and the CEO of Aarstiderne, Annette Hartvig Larsen, will be there to welcome English speaking guests with an introduction to the farm and a warm invitation to join the celebrations at the Pinsemarked which will be taking place on the same day.

Find out more here - we look forward to meeting you!!

(Katherine Ball)

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