I'm trying something a little different with this post. My friend Kristen at Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker is offering up a monthly "Improv" challenge. There are different themes each month and should we decide to participate, we simply conjure up a recipe with the two specified ingredients for that month. This month we have eggnog and cranberries. Since I've made nearly every flavor combination there is of my cinnamon rolls, I figured I might as well go ahead and add eggnog and cranberry to the mix. They were fabulous, if I do say so myself. :) Now, let's see if I remembered how I made them...
Eggnog and Cranberry Cinnamon Rolls
1 cup eggnog
1/4 cup butter
1 (.25 ounce) package instant yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
1 egg, room temperature, slightly beaten
3 1/4 to 3 1/2 cups flour (I use bread flour, but you can use all purpose)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup chopped fresh cranberries
Heat the eggnog and 1/4 cup butter in a small saucepan until butter is melted. Remove from heat. Let cool until temperature is about 110 degrees F (like bathwater warm).
In a large mixing bowl, combine eggnog mixture with yeast, egg, and 2 cups of the flour and the salt; beat well. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring well after each addition. When the dough has just pulled together, turn it onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 5 minutes. (Alternately, just use the dough hook on your mixer and let the mixer knead the dough for about five minutes)
Place the dough in a greased bowl and cover with a clean damp towel. Allow dough to rise until double, about 1 hour. In the mean time, in a small bowl, mix together the softened butter, brown sugar and cinnamon.
Roll out the dough into a 12X9 inch rectangle (I like to do this on my Silpat). Spread the dough with the cinnamon/sugar mixture. Sprinkle with chopped cranberries. Roll up the dough from the long side and pinch seam to seal. Cut into 12 equal sized pieces and place into a greased 9X13 inch pan. Cover and let rise until doubled.
Bake rolls at 375 ° for 25 to 30 minutes or until browned. Remove from oven and frost with Eggnog Cream Cheese Frosting while warm.
I went a little overboard on the frosting by adding too much eggnog, so I merely added more powdered sugar to compensate. Hint: Leftover frosting is really good spread on graham crackers--it wasn't such a bad mistake.
Of course, I went a little nuts on the theme and made some eggnog pancakes, too. That recipe will be up in a few days...much plate licking went on with those...
Next month the theme will be lemons and sour cream. The brain is ticking already.