Cinnamon rolls get the grown-up treatment here, with muscular brown sugar used in place of white, and a splash of bourbon in the glaze for bite. The flavor is heavenly, the smell ambrosial — and the recipe is large enough that, if you’re not feeding a crowd, you can freeze a few for later in the week.
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup milk
- 400 grams all-purpose flour, more as needed (about 3 1/2 cups)
- 400 grams dark brown sugar (about 2 cups)
- 7 grams active dry yeast (about 2 1/4 teaspoons; 1 envelope)
- 4 grams plus a pinch fine sea salt (about 1 teaspoon)
- 7 grams ground cardamom (about 3/4 teaspoon)
- 1 large egg
- 14 grams ground cinnamon (about 1 1/2 tablespoons)
- 2 grams freshly grated nutmeg (about 1/2 teaspoon)
- 1 tablespoon bourbon or apple cider
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 115 grams confectioners’ sugar (about 1 cup)
- In a small saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons butter. Add milk and heat until just warm to the touch (120 to 130 degrees). Pour into a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, 100 grams or 1/2 cup brown sugar, yeast, 4 grams or 1 teaspoon salt and cardamom. Slowly beat flour mixture into butter mixture using an electric mixer set with the paddle attachment. Beat in egg, then beat until dough comes together in a ball, about 3 minutes; it should be slightly tacky but not sticky. If it feels very sticky, beat in more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Turn dough out onto lightly floured work surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 2 minutes. Form into ball. Transfer to a large, lightly oiled bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and a dish towel. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 2 to 3 hours.
- Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, melt 4 tablespoons butter. Cook until the foam subsides and the butter turns a deep nut brown; cool to room temperature.
- In a small bowl, whisk together 150 grams or 3/4 cup brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and a pinch of salt.
- Punch down dough and roll into a rectangle about 15 inches long and 11 or 12 inches wide. Using a pastry brush, coat dough with butter, leaving a 1/2-inch border all around. Sprinkle sugar mixture evenly over butter. Starting at a long end, tightly roll up dough over filling. Arrange seam side down. Cut the dough crosswise into 18 slices (about 1/2-inch thick).
- Lightly grease two 9-inch square baking pans. Transfer rolls to pan, cut side up; they will fit snugly. Cover with plastic wrap and a dish towel. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 45 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees; bake rolls until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes.
- While rolls bake, place remaining 150 grams or 3/4 cup brown sugar in a small saucepan. Sprinkle with bourbon and 1/4 cup water. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, and cook until sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes. Whisk in remaining 2 tablespoons butter until melted, whisk in vanilla, then turn off the heat and whisk in the confectioners’ sugar. Pour warm glaze evenly over the tops of the warm rolls. Let rest for at least 20 minutes before serving to allow glaze to set.