Happy Friday! If you celebrate Christmas (and of course, even if you don’t), I hope you had a wonderful day yesterday filled with love, laughter, and hopefully lots of food! My contribution to the holiday table were ooey, gooey Eggnog Cinnamon Buns with a Whiskey Eggnog Frosting from the blog Local Milk that are sure to make even the Grinchiest hearts grow three times their size!
These buns are definitely one of those ultimate comfort foods and after eating one you may even need to loosen your belt just a wee bit. From their soft fluffy exterior to their spice-filled sugary sweet center all covered in decadent frosting, there’s just something so sinfully delicious about it all.
What I loved about this recipe was the use of eggnog and the addition of freshly grated nutmeg. I’d never before used whole nutmeg, but after seeing the difference it may be hard to go back! The smell is rich and intoxicating and definitely adds a whole other dynamic to the entire flavor profile of the buns.
I also added 1/2 cup of raisins because I think they are a great match for nutmeg and cinnamon flavored anything, but especially for these buns.
Whenever I’ve made cinnamon buns in the past, it was always of the ready-to-bake Pillsbury variety where they’d go from can to oven in just a matter of minutes, and while I truly don’t have much against those, I wanted to give myself a baking challenge and see if I could tackle making cinnamon buns from scratch. I quickly realized that these were a little more complex than I realized and there was a bit of a bumpy start when it came to putting these all together. I virtually “killed” the yeast by heating the eggnog just a tad too much and as a result my first batch didn’t rise. It was such a disappointment, but I was determined to eat these buns for Christmas one way or another and persevered on (albeit, a tad more reluctantly).Luckily, as my second batch came to life and and I slowly saw it doubling in size, I was able to breathe a sigh or relief knowing that a true Christmas miracle had just taken place within that bowl. Now, it was just a matter of assembling all of the ingredients and allowing the rolls to rise even more to become that distinctive swirl of cinnamon-sugar goodness.
As I pulled the hot buns out of the oven and saw that they were exactly how I imagined, I couldn’t have been happier. Once cooled, I topped with the whiskey frosting and served. They were a hit and all of the hard work and waiting was definitely worth it. I’d definitely make these again and hope you will too!
Eggnog Cinnamon Buns with a Whiskey Eggnog Frosting
Recipe credit: Local Milk
For the dough:
- 4 cups flour, plus 1/4 cup for rolling out
- 1 1/4 cup eggnog
- 1 packet active dry yeast
- 1/4 cup crème fraîche
- 2 eggs, room temperature
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 stick unsalted butter
For the filling:
- 6 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup of raisins
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
For the icing:
- 8 oz crème fraîche
- 1 tablespoon whiskey (optional)
- fresh vanilla bean
- 1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
- 1 tablespoon eggnog
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- Warm the eggnog in a small saucepan until about 115° F, but definitely no more. Remove pan from heat and add the yeast, allowing to proof for five to ten minutes. It should be bubbly.
- While the yeast proofs melt and brown the stick of butter. This should take about 5-10 minutes. Once finished, allow to cool down before adding it to my dough.
- In a large mixing bowl combine the yeast and eggnog mixture, 2 eggs, 1/4 cup crème fraîche, 3/4 cup sugar, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, 1 teaspoon vanilla, brown butter, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Stir to combine well.
- Stir in the flour with a wooden spoon. Once you’ve mixed the flour as much as you can, turn it out onto a floured surface and knead until everything is well incorporated. Place back into cleaned bowl and cover with plastic wrap or kitchen towel to proof for about 2 hours.
- After the dough has risen turn it out onto a floured surface and gently knead. Pat it out into a rectangle about 9″ x 12″ with the dough facing you longways.
- In a bowl combine 3/4 cup dark brown sugar, 1/2 cup of raisins, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, and 1 tablespoon cinnamon.
- Melt the 6 tablespoons of butter and generously brush over the entire surface of the dough.
- Sprinkle the brown sugar mixture generously and evenly over the butter, and gently press into the surface.
- Carefully roll the dough longways until you’ve created a log shape. Pinch the ends together to keep it from rolling open again.
- Using string (I used good ol’ sewing thread), cut the log into 1″ rolls and place into rounded dish.
- Once you’ve cut all of the rolls, cover the dish with a towel and allow dough to rise for another hour or so.
- Preheat oven to 350° F. Place rolls into the oven and bake for about 20-25 minutes.
- In the meantime, make the whiskey eggnog frosting by whisking the crème fraîche, sifted powdered sugar, nutmeg, vanilla beans, whiskey (optional), and eggnog.
- Allow rolls to cool completely before pouring frosting over the top.
I’ll be bringing these to Fiesta Friday #48. See you there and happy partying!!