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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

Pumpkin Brioche Cinnamon Rolls

I first made these Pumpkin Cinn. Rolls from scratch just over a year ago, and liked them enough to try them again.  This time, although I still enjoyed the taste of the pumpkin seeds and the interesting spices, I was not fond of the amount of sugar, nor the starchiness of the all purpose flour that gets used.  I suppose my tastes have changed.  I ended up giving away the buns.  Links to what I did with my old Jack-o-lantern pumpkin:

Starting from Scratch: Obtaining the pumpkin puree

Pumpkin that I would be roasting and pureeing
 The innards are set aside for the chickens to eat
 Cut it in half and pour in some water
 The seeds are great roasted.  I just ate these as a snack, although last time I put them in the buns.
 Roasted Jack

 Now I've got my puree -- enough for a week of soup plus enough for the brioche


The instructions for the brioche were given for a mixer.  I was using my hands, and the danger here I suppose is that the ingredients will not stay cold enough to mix properly due to the warmth of the hands.  But everything gets refrigerated afterward anyway.   I can't say that I have any facility with brioche dough.  Most of my brioche doughs have been failures, and I'd have to say this one was too.

Mis en place

Start adding ingred together

before adding the sugar

The sugar gets added and kneaded a little at a time until incorporated
I cut the butter in with a pastry cutter
To incorporate the butter I just flattened it all against the counter repeatedly

There were still a few butter blobs

It rests for an hour, then I kneaded/smeared it again until the butter was all (I thought) incorporated
what a sticky mess

Now you refrigerate it for 12 hours

Making the Buns

There is a lot of brioche, and you only need 750g of it to make the cinnamon rolls.  The rest of the ingredients are shown here as I begin to build the buns.

Mis en place 2

The Pepita Cream

I used a couple of machines to make this pumpkin seed cream, which is what really makes these buns tasty.  Here I use a food processor, and then a kitchen hand mixer.

Pulverize the Pepitas and sugars to make the cream

This is what makes the wonderful taste of these rolls: the pepita flour

Butter is creamed

Eggs & vanilla added: I did this out of order, be careful next time

Icing sugar goes in

This pepita cream gets refrigerated if you've made it ahead

Cinnamon Sugar and Pepita fillings

Mis en place 3

Cinnamon Sugar mix

I roasted the pepitas for about 4 minutes

Then the roasted seeds are gently pulverized, so half is floury, and half is crunchy whole

I weigh out 750g of the brioche I made the day before

I roll it out thinly.  Uh-oh, still some chunks of butter.

Close up of the texture: spices and butter blobs

The pepita cream really should have been room temperature to spread on this rolled out dough

With diligence and warm fingers you can spread it out

Brush on some water on the 1" margin you left on the short end

 Sprinkle on the cinnamon sugar
and spread out the cinnamon sugar evenly

Sprinkle on the roasted, cracked pepitas

And spread out those pepitas somewhat evenly

Roll up the log

Log ready to be cut into rolls

The rolls are to proof for 1 hour and 45 minutes

Did I have them in a spot that was too cool?  Not much rise, only sag.

This final sweet stuff really does make these buns a bit too sickly sweet.  But it probably wouldn't be recognizable as a cinnamon bun without it.

Mis en place 4

The icing


More sag.  No real rise here.

Not much to look at, right out of the oven

The rolls are drizzled with the icing while still warm (but not hot)


A bit gooey.  Probably could have baked a bit longer.

Tastes okay, but it's not my taste any more.  Probably should have baked a bit longer.  

Give it away.

Notes to Myself
  • Learn how to handle brioche dough.  Read some more about it, and don't assume it is the same as bread dough.
  • Can you make a whole wheat version of these?
  • What about adding the ground pumpkin seeds and spices to a bread dough instead of a sweet dough?
  • Chances are you will make these again when next you have a jack o lantern pumpkin to use up.  Make sure that the buns are baked long enough.  Twenty minutes may not be long enough: try 25-30 minutes next time.

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