Episode: Save Our Cinnamon
I’ve always been a sucker for baby/kid versions of cartoon characters. I don’t know if it’s because I found them easier to relate to when I was a kid, or if it’s just that the little versions are too cute. Yeah, cute. I’m definitely going with cute. Baby Looney Tunes is no exception. They don’t act much like their adult selves that I know and love, but I like the idea of seeing the characters growing up together in a more modern environment and getting along (for the most part). And I loved watching and waiting to see which characters got the “babyfication” treatment. I mean, of course Bugs, Daffy, and Sylvester are adorable, but have you seen Baby Gossamer? (He’s so cute!) Every time I went to Six Flags, I begged my parents for all the Baby Looney Tunes plushies I could get my hands on because I couldn’t go any longer without that cuteness in my life. Cuddliness aside, Baby Looney Tunes is a sweet, little show, filled with lessons about using your imagination, and trying your best, and doing the right thing, and growing up. (You know, all of those cartoon standards.)
But you know what else is sweet? Cinnamon rolls. Baby Looney Tunes is full of cookies and cakes, but the king of sweets in this show is the cinnamon roll. Granny’s sister, Auntie, owns a bakery called Cakery Bakery Doc which has the most addicting cinnamon rolls. I’m pretty sure the Babies were more excited about eating cinnamon rolls than seeing Auntie. (Daffy was not a happy camper when she brought in a cake for them.) But when the bakery is on the verge of shutting down, the Babies have no problems getting their hands dirty making a giant cinnamon roll worthy of the Skinni’s Book of World Records. As much as I’d love to make a record-breaking, giant cinnamon roll of death, I’m going to play it safe and just bake up a bunch of yummy, regular-sized ones.
Recipe makes 16 cinnamon rolls.
1 cup warm milk (105-115 degrees F)
2 ¼ teaspoons yeast
¼ cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 eggs, room temperature, beaten
2 egg yolks, room temperature, beaten
4 cups flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon
Pinch of Salt
2 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled slightly
4 ounces (½ cup) cream cheese, room temperature
½ cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a small bowl, dissolve yeast and 2 tablespoons of sugar in the warm milk. Let it rest for 5-10 minutes, or until foamy. In a large bowl, combine the rest of the sugar, salt, butter, eggs, egg yolks, and 2 cups of flour. Add the yeast mixture. Mix in the rest of the flour until the dough comes together. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for 10 minutes. Form the dough into a ball again and place in a large, clean bowl. Lightly coat dough with oil and cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise in a warm place for 2 hours or until it has doubled in size.
In a small bowl, make the filling by combining the brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Mix well and set aside.
Punch down the dough and turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough into an 18 X 12-inch rectangle. Evenly brush the melted butter on the dough. Sprinkle the filling over the dough and spread to cover evenly. Pat down on the filling just a bit to encourage it to stick. Beginning with the long edge closet to you, use your fingers to tightly roll the dough into a cylinder. Use a serrated knife to cut the cylinder into 16 rolls. Place the rolls on a couple of greased baking sheets and allow to rise for 30 minutes, or until doubled in size.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Bake the rolls, rotating the pans halfway through, for 30 minutes, or until the rolls are browned and cooked through.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat together the cream cheese and butter. Add the vanilla extract. Slowly mix in the powdered sugar and beat until the icing is smooth.
Putting It All Together:
Allow the rolls to cool slightly and generously spread icing on top. Now you can enjoy!
I love cinnamon rolls as much as the Baby Looney Tunes do, so I know these won’t last long. If it were possible, that sweet smell would have me floating all over the place like the Babies. But what I truly love about this episode (besides the excuse to make cinnamon rolls) is that a little bakery education is thrown in there. The Babies are truly making a cinnamon roll from kneading the dough, to spreading the filling, to rolling it, and baking it up. It takes some work, but cinnamon rolls (and saving bakeries) are definitely worth it.
Tune in next week for more Cartoon Cravings!