A BIG thank you to Steph and Alana for hosting the baby shower!!
Date Cinnamon Rolls
Adapted from Alton Brown and Two Red Bowls
¼ cup milk
1 teaspoon dry active yeast
2 to 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon salt
large pinch cardamom
¼ cup plain yogurt, sour cream, or buttermilk
1 egg yolk
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
8 to 10 medjoor dates, pitted
2 teaspoons cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup brown sugar
Heat the milk to about 110 degrees F (just above body temperature, if testing by touch) and stir in the yeast. Set aside for about 5 minutes or until the yeast dissolves and begins to foam up.
In a separate bowl, or the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt and cardamom.
In a separate bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together the yogurt, egg, yolk and butter.
Once the yeast has foamed up, combine with the other wet ingredients. Once mixed together, add all of the wet + yeast mixture to the bowl with the flour mixture. Stir to combine.
Using the dough hook, knead the dough for about 5 minutes. It should be smooth, elastic and lightly sticky when done. Add in as little flour as possible to keep from getting too sticky and driving yourself crazy.
Place in an oiled bowl and cover with plastic for two hours on the counter or 8 hours (or overnight) in the fridge.
Meanwhile, place the dates in a heat-safe bowl. Pour boiling water to cover and let rest 10 minutes. Drain the dates and add to a food processor along with the cinnamon and salt. Puree the date mixture until it forms a thick paste. Cover and set aside until ready to use.
Once the dough has doubled in size, punch it down and roll into a 10 X 12 inch rectangle. If coming from the refrigerator, you will need to let the dough rest at room temperature for 10-20 minutes before rolling it out.
Spread the date paste over the rolled-out dough, leaving about a ½-inch boarder on each side. Sprinkle with the brown sugar then pat down until it sticks.
Starting at one of the long sides, carefully but tightly roll up the dough. Use dental floss, kitchen shears, or a serrated knife to cut the dough into 8 to 10 even pieces.
Place the rolls in a glass baking pan, skillet, or on a baking sheet. Place in the refrigerator until ready to bake (or overnight) or move to the next step.
Let the rolls rise at room temperature one last time for 30 to 45 minutes as the over pre-heats to 350 degrees.
Bake the rolls for about 18 to 25 minutes, or until slightly golden. Remove from the oven and slather on the cream cheese frosting while they are still warm.
Note: If freezing, do so after the rolls have been sliced but before the final rise. Thaw in the refrigerator before baking.
Bourbon Cream Cheese Frosting
¼ cup cream cheese, softened
¼ cup unsalted butter, softened
1 to 2 cups confectioner’s sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons bourbon, or to taste
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Stir together the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Gradually add in the remaining ingredients until desired consistency and sweetness. It should be thick yet spreadable. Frost the cinnamon rolls while they are still warm for optimum ooey, gooey-ness.