I'm afraid that I haven't been very diligent with my breakfast-making lately. I feel that breakfast is the trickiest meal in the summertime. I don't want the hot comfort foods of winter and fall (steaming scrambled eggs, porridge of all sorts). But my cold breakfasts of yogurt and fruit can get old in their endless repetition. And yet — baking? In this heat?
The key to breakfast baking in the summer is to keep it as brief as possible, and that's where this recipe comes in. There have been a lot of Clif bars and leftovers eaten as breakfast in my household lately, so when these appeared my husband pounced, not believing his luck. Sweet, rich cinnamon buns — summer-style!
These are an indulgent brunch dish of quick biscuits loaded with cinnamon chips, baked until flaky and streaked with gobs of melted cinnamon. The biscuit part isn't really sweet at all, but it is fluffy and tender. The sweetness comes from the melted lines of cinnamon sugar, and the creamy glaze on top. I rarely if ever have the patience and forethought to make real cinnamon rolls, with their yeast dough and hours of mixing, rising, kneading. These are far, far quicker — they're practically an impulse bake.
These biscuits can be whipped up in 10 minutes or less, with a handful of ingredients, and they only stay in the oven for 16 minutes, tops. They have that gooey, pull-apart quality of cinnamon rolls, but without all the hassle of yeast.
So yes, breakfast baking in the summer — you can get in and out with a plateful of gooey cinnamon biscuits before your kitchen truly heats up.
makes 4 extra-large biscuits
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups heavy cream*, divided
1/2 cup cinnamon chips
3/4 cup confectioner's sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
* Note: If you want to use anything other than heavy cream in this recipe, please know that you will not get optimal results. All the fat in this recipe comes from the cream (instead of butter) so if you use low-fat milk or any other kind of dairy, the whole recipe would need to be tweaked. If you do not want to use cream, I would recommend making another biscuit recipe that you are familiar with and just adding cinnamon chips as directed below.
Heat the oven to 425°F. Lightly grease an 8 x 8-inch baking pan, or line it with one sheet of parchment paper, hanging over the sides.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt, breaking up any large clumps in the brown sugar. Pour in 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups of the cream — just enough to make a thick, fairly wet and sticky dough — and mix quickly, just until combined. Dump the dough out on a floured countertop and pat into a long, thick rectangle. The dough will be firm, yet wet and sticky.
Slice the rectangle into 8 equally-sized squares. Lay half the squares in the prepared baking pan. Sprinkle about a tablespoon and a half of cinnamon chips over each square. Cover the cinnamon chips with a second square of biscuit dough and lightly press the edges to seal. Repeat with each biscuit. Top the biscuits with the remaining cinnamon chips.
Bake for 14 to 16 minutes, or until the biscuits are barely golden on the outside and just cooked through. Remove from the oven and use a knife to spread and smear the now hot cinnamon chips on top of the biscuits.
Whisk together the remaining 1/2 cup cream, confectioner's sugar, and vanilla. Lightly drizzle the biscuits with this glaze (you may not want to use all of the glaze). Serve and eat while hot.
More Breakfast Treats from The Kitchn
(Images: Faith Durand)