I love cinnamon rolls but I never make them homemade for two reasons. First, up until recently, I have been very intimidated by yeast due to more recipe failures than I like to admit. But, I solved this problem with a digital thermometer, a digital scale, and lots of practice. The other problem is the long wait for the dough to rise, on top of the time to make the rest of the recipe. I would have to get up at the crack of dawn or my kids would go crazy waiting for those cinnamon rolls So, when I came across this recipe for cinnamon roll scones, I knew it would be the perfect compromise. All the taste of a cinnamon roll minus the hassle and wait time involved with yeast. Besides, I also love scones! So I just knew the combination had to be good. And good they were indeed. My picky husband ate 3 scones…enough said.
The dough is a typical buttermilk scone dough but with the addition of cinnamon and nutmeg. The dough is rolled into a rectangle, smeared with cinnamon sugar paste, rolled up, cut and baked until golden brown. The scones are then drizzled liberally with a powdered sugar glaze. The house smells delicious as they bake and they look and taste just as good. While I do love to indulge in a good Cinnabon cinnamon roll at the mall, these cinnascones are good enough that I can pass them up…well, maybe I could if it weren’t for those dang delicious Mochalatta Chills.
Yield: 10 to 12 scones (I got 9)
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 3/4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp kosher salt
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
3/4 tsp nutmeg
1 1/4 sticks (10 Tbsp) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1/2 cup buttermilk (plus more if needed to make cohesive dough)
3/4 tsp almond extract (I used vanilla)
1/4 cup heavy cream (for brushing)
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 cup powdered sugar
2 1/2 Tbsp whole milk (I would start with 1 Tbsp and add more as needed to get drizzle consistency)
1/2 tsp almond extract (I used vanilla)
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
In a large mixer bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg. With clean hands, work butter into the dry ingredients until it is well incorporated and has the consistency of fine breadcrumbs. Make a well in the center of the dry mixture, and pour in the butter milk and extract. Still using your hands, mix the ingredients until all the wet ingredients are absorbed by the dry. I had to add more buttermilk to get it to the point that the dough would hold together- otherwise there was still a lot of dry mixture that wouldn’t mix in. Remember, you have to be able to roll the dough. But, add just a bit at a time, trying to handle the dough as little as possible. Then knead the dough about 7 times, no more. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and using a floured rolling pin, roll into a rectangle, about 1/2 inch thick.
Make the cinnamon paste by combining the butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon in a small saucepan over low heat and stir until the sugar is dissolved. Smear the cinnamon paste over the entire surface of the dough. Starting at one long side, roll the dough tightly to create a long cylinder. Using a very sharp knife, slice the roll into 1 inch thick disks. Lay the disks on their sides, spacing them 2 inches apart, on a cookie sheet lined with parchment. Carefully press them with the palm of your hand to 1/2 inch thick. Using a pastry brush, brush the tops of the scones liberally with cream.
Reduce the oven temperature to 350°F. Bake the scones for 15 to 20 minutes, or until firm and golden on top. Remove from the oven and let cool on baking sheet for 20 minutes- I could only wait 10.
To make frosting, combine the powdered sugar, milk and extract in a bowl and whisk it until smooth. Start with 1 Tbsp of milk, and add more as needed to get the proper drizzle consistency. I like the look and taste of a thicker drizzle, so I used less. Using a spoon or pastry bag (I used a Ziploc bag and made a small cut in the corner), drizzle the tops of the scones. They are best served warm!
- I had to use a good deal more buttermilk than the recipe stated in order to get a dough that would roll. Add a bit at a time until the dough sticks together.
- Try to handle the dough as little as possible for a tender scone.
- I found the frosting drizzle as written to be way too thin. I would start with 1 Tbsp milk and increase from there.
- Spread the cinnamon paste quickly as it thickens and is hard to spread otherwise.