I have a confession to make. I could eat cinnamon rolls every day. Multiple times.
Oh, I know. My butt would be as big as the state of Alaska but my tummy would be ecstatic. And seriously, I would eat them everyday but for one small, tiny, minuscule issue.
Cinnamon rolls are labor intensive – and frankly, my dear I don’t have the time. I bet you don’t either.
Back when I was a teenager, in the Dark Ages, I worked at a local mall. I was a size 4 and my waist was tiny – if I was buying a flowy skirt I bought it in a size 1. Really. Dang, those were the days, huh? My closet contained clothes in sizes 1-7… tops were 7’s, slacks were 5’s, jeans were 4’s, and skirts were 1’s if they were flowy enough to fit over (what I used to think of as…) my huge, 33 1/2 inch hips.
A moment of silence please while I mourn the loss of that amazing body.
Anyway. Back then I worked in a department store on Saturday mornings (o.k., I worked there weeknights,too), and I used to stop by a diner (remember those?) and get a cinnamon roll and coffee. The cinnamon rolls were huge and pillowy, fragrant with cinnamon and sugar. The rolls were topped with a layer of cream cheese icing. And (the most magical thing of all) if you asked very nicely they would run the roll under the broiler and melt a pat of butter on top.
The coffee was scorched and awful but the rolls? Amazing bursts of warm, spicy gooey-ness.
My family would love for me to do those everyday but I can’t. I am lucky if I work up enough energy to make them once a month. But what if, what if you could get that flavor in 30 minutes or less, start to finish? Hmm?
Would you be interested? Of course you would!
Muffins. Muffins are the answer. The may not be the answer to ALL of life’s problems and questions but they can certainly clarify your priorities in a hurry. These muffins are tender, mapley- cinnamony, and topped with a creamy glaze. The crumb is buttery and sweet and melt in your mouth.
They freeze well so you can do that muffin thing and make them on the weekend, pop them in the microwave on a workday while you are pouring your coffee and have a really luxurious breakfast on the busiest morning.
Maybe it would be a good idea to earmark these for Mondays?
The ingredients are probably all ready in your cupboard and ‘fridge – especially if you have been making you own buttermilk. 🙂
How are you enjoying that, by the way?
The buttermilk makes the muffins tender and moist and it gives them just a touch of tang that balances all of that cinnamon and sugar beautifully. Imagine yourself sitting at the table, sunlight streaming through the window as you sipped your coffee and nibbled delicately at the buttery sweet spiciness in front of you.
O.k. reality check.
Imagine yourself cramming one of these in your mouth as you ran out the door with your travel mug, yelling at the kids to get in the car, and trying to make a dentists appointment on your cell phone.
Whichever one you identify with? The muffins work either way.
Maple Cinnamon Roll Muffins
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 salt
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon maple flavoring
- 1 egg
- 3 cups flour plus more for dusting
- 3 tablespoons butter , room temperature
- 2/3 cups brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of ancho chile powder (1/8th - 1/4th teaspoon)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup melted butter
- 1 teaspoon maple flavoring
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla
- Preheat oven to 375° F.
- Add the baking soda, brown sugar, salt, maple flavoring,vanilla, and egg into a large mixing bowl.
- Whisk slightly to break up the yolk and then add the buttermilk.
- Whisk until well blended.
- Add the flour and stir until mixed - do not over mix or the muffins will be tough.
- Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured counter top and knead gently for a minute or so.
- Roll into a 12 x 24 inch rectangle.
- Spread with the 3 tablespoons of the softened butter.
- Mix the sugar, cinnamon, and ancho chile powder together and sprinkle over the butter.
- Roll the dough up into a log.
- Cut into 12 slices.
- Put each slice in a greased muffin cup.
- Bake for 15 minutes or until golden.
- Let the muffins cool for about 5 minutes and then turn out onto the counter.
- Mix the powdered sugar, melted butter, maple, and vanilla until it is smooth and reaches the consistency of a thick glaze. You may thin it with cream or milk if necessary.
- Drizzle (or slather) with the icing while the muffins are still warm.