The USDA released its new food pyramid the other day (which is actually a plate now instead of a pyramid), and I am sorely disappointed to report that cinnamon rolls did not appear anywhere on that plate. I think by now most of us know what should be on our dinner plate in terms of healthy, well-rounded nutrient-laden meals, but it is my considered opinion that our breakfast plate should include cinnamon rolls now and then. And not just any cinnamon roll, mind you, but how ‘bout a homemade cinnamon roll hybrid that is a cross between a cinnamon roll and cinnamon toast, is super easy to make and gosh darn delicious.
In honor of their ancestry, I call these little gems cinnamon toast rolls, and here’s all you need to make them…
Yep. That’s it… some soft white bread, some butter and some cinnamon sugar. And here’s all you have to do…
Trim the crusts off of the bread
Roll the bread really flat
Brush both sides of the bread with butter
Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar
Roll in any fashion you like (I’ve also folded them into little triangles)
Place in a mini muffin tin (or if you’ve folded them, place them on a baking sheet). Sprinkle them with a little more cinnamon sugar and bake them.
What transpires as these bake is that the outside gets just a little crispy and the inside stays sort of soft and cinnamon-y and each bite is just a heavenly little bit of cinnamon toast or cinnamon roll or something altogether different from either. Doesn’t matter. They’re just good.
The method here may seem a tad familiar to those of you who read this blog regularly. I used it to make these wonderful little mini bread cups. The idea came from a show that Sara Moulton did years ago when Foodtv was in its infancy. It seems her Mother or Grandmother often used bread in place of pastry and I just think it’s just a great idea when you’re short on time or patience or both.
After I made this last batch, I had the totally unnecessary idea to drizzle a few with some icing. And even though this would fall into the category of gilding the lily, it’s a pretty delicious addition.
Although I think the new USDA nutritional guideline is a much-needed improvement over the old one, I think I’m going to write and tell them to lighten up and stick a few cinnamon toast rolls on their plate once in a while.
Cinnamon Toast Rolls
a dozen or so slices of very soft, fresh white bread
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Cut the crusts from a slice of bread and roll until very thin. Spread both sides of the bread with melted butter and then sprinkle one side with the cinnamon sugar, making sure to cover very well. Fold each side into the middle and then gently roll up and place in a buttered mini muffin tin. Sprinkle with a little more cinnamon sugar. Alternately, you can fold the bread into a triangle, and then fold into another smaller triangle and place on a parchment-covered baking sheet.
When all of the rolls are made, bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until they are just starting to turn golden brown and get a little crisp. Remove from the muffin tin to cool slightly before serving.
If desired, drizzle with some icing made with powdered sugar that's been moistened with a little milk.
These freeze really well. To reheat, place briefly in a microwave to thaw and then bake in a low oven (250 or 300 until warm and slightly crisp. Alternately, you can reheat them in foil in the oven.