I’m a southern California girl. We don’t get these things called seasons. We have hot (like today is supposed to be 98°) and cool (it was about 55° and it rained last week) with an average of pretty fortunate. Growing up, there was not an abundance of leaves changing. We only saw snow on vacations or in the distant mountains. And there was never a shift in what we ate because of the seasons. I can only remember eating anything pumpkin on Thanksgiving.
I don’t know what is responsible for my late awakening to autumnal flavors. Maybe I just grew up in a place that didn’t feel the effects of the seasons? Or is it just that there has been saturation in the market of seasonal flavors in recent years? I think Starbucks and the pumpkin spice and gingerbread lattes really made this autumnal flavor thing trendy, and I wasn’t missing out on these things throughout my childhood. Regardless of if this is true, I want to believe it so I don’t start thinking I was deprived of anything growing up.
I hear it’s fall. The only proof I have of this is that the sun is starting to set too early for my liking. There’s pumpkin patches on street corners and fresh apples in the store too. So I thought I’d try my hand at something pumpkin. I keep seeing pumpkin cinnamon rolls online. I felt because of my love for yeasted things, this should be what I attempt. But the recipes seemed a little… too alike.
I started browsing my kitchen for inspiration… and there it was, in the spice cabinet. Here is my take on the pumpkin cinnamon roll… taken to a new level with my friends the apple, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. I have to say, for not growing up cooking with pumpkin these are pretty damn good. My parents both went crazy for them this morning. And my dog is still holding a grudge that no one gave her any.
This makes a pretty big batch (I used two 9 x 13 Pyrex dishes). I took a whole tray into work. They were quickly devoured. Must share on Yeastspotting!
Pumpkin Yeast dough
1/2 cup warm water
2 1/4 ounce packages instant yeast
1/2 cup milk
4 Tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
3 cups bread flour
2 cups whole wheat white flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1 cup pumpkin puree
2 tablespoons butter (soft at room temperature)
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1 large apple, grated. (I used honey crisp)
2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons cream
2 cups (or more if needed) powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- In a large bowl combine flours, sugar, spices and salt.
- Add the melted butter and milk to the dry ingredients as well as the yeast mixture. Mix the dough a bit.
- Add the pumpkin puree and continue mixing.
- Dump dough out of the bowl onto a counter or cutting board and knead until the dough is smooth and bounces back when poked.
- Place the dough in an oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. let proof rise until doubled in size.
- Make the filling by mixing the sugar, cinnamon and ginger together.
- grate the apple and squeeze out all extra moisture.
- After the dough has risen dump out onto a working surface (I use a marble counter top, and since the dough has enough butter in it, it doesn’t stick without flour). Roll the dough out into a rectangle about 18 inches by 12 inches.
- spread the soft butter on every inch of the dough
- follow by sprinkling the sugar mixture over the butter and then the apple.
- roll the dough into a log and cut into about 12 rolls.
- Place the rolls in a greased baking dish and let proof either in the fridge over night or at least an hour before baking.
- When ready to bake, heat the oven to 350° and bake for about 20 minutes, rotating during the baking.
- Make the frosting - Start with the soft butter and the cream. Whip together. add the extracts and powdered sugar. Beat on a low-speed until everything is incorporated. You may need to add more cream to thin out the frosting. You want it to be stiff, but spreadable.
- Take the rolls out of the oven when they are still somewhat soft and a nice golden brown. Cover with frosting and enjoy!