Cinnamon Roll Birthday Cake
August is a big time around this house. It's our birthday month, yes... month. Sean was born on August 6th and I was born on August 12th. August also includes Sean's fathers birthday, my brother in law Brian's birthday, 4 of our friend's birthdays, my parents anniversary and marks the end of summer. So every August there are lots of celebrations, and lots of reasons to make cake.
For Sean, I've created a new cake every birthday to surprise him. Some years he gets fancy fondant cakes with the usual themes of hunting, fishing, guns or woodworking. Other years I go all out on flavor. This year I wanted to go for the yum factor. Who doesn't love cinnamon rolls? Who wouldn't love a giant version?
Before we get to the cake, lets take a second to talk sprinkles. First of all, I know what you are thinking... sprinkles are not the healthiest things and yes, they are probably loaded with chemicals and artificial ingredients. But for a once in a while special celebration, I like to make an exception. But if you are not the exception kind of guy or gal, feel free to omit. It'll still be a giant cinnamon roll after all! :)
Lately I have been seeing confetti sprinkles everywhere! A quick tip on how to make your very own signature sprinkle mixture? It's so easy. Take all the sprinkles you have in the house or can find at the store, every color, every shape, and mix a spoonful of each into a jar. Viola, confetti sprinkles that will make any of your baked goods unique from the crowd.
Back to the task at hand. Here is your next cake to try.
Cinnamon Roll Birthday Cake
1/2 cup of warm water ("baby bath temperature")
2 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
1/4 cup + 1 tsp sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 whole egg plus 1 egg yolk
1 tsp salt
4 cups all-purpose flour (plus more for rolling out)
5 tablespoons unsalted butter (softened)
3/4 cup unsalted butter (softened)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)
Confetti sprinkles for decorating
1. Stir 1 tsp sugar in warm water to dissolve. Sprinkle yeast over the top and place in a warm area of the kitchen until softened and bubbly. about 7-8 minutes
Make the dough:
2. In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment beat milk, eggs, and proofed yeast until combined.
Keeping the mixer on low add 1/2 cup sugar, salt, and 3 cups of flour in small (1/2 cup) increments waiting until the flour has incorporated before adding again.
3. Continue to knead on low speed and add butter at roughly 1 teaspoon at a time to distribute butter evenly around the dough.
4. Add remaining cup of flour and knead until dough "springs back" when you press it with your finger. The dough should no longer stick to the sides of the bowl. About 5 minutes.
5. Transfer the dough to a greased bowl and cover with a kitchen towel. Place bowl in a warm place of the kitchen to proof for about an hour. The dough should double in volume.
Shape the roll:
6. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9 inch spring form pan with butter and set aside.
7. Roll out the dough on a floured surface to create a 20x14 inch rectangle.
8. In a small bowl combine brown sugar, sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Spread softened butter in an even layer all over the dough and sprinkle with brown sugar mixture.
9. Using a sharp knife or a pizza wheel slice lengthwise down the rectangle 4 times to create 5 (2 1/4 inch) strips. Start the roll by rolling one strip up and placing it in the center of the spring form pan base. Wrap each strip around the center roll with the brown sugar mixture facing towards the center. Carefully clamp the spring form ring around the cake.
10. Preheat the oven to 350F. Place the cake on the center rack of the oven and bake for 40=50 minutes, rotating halfway through the cook time. *See Baking Notes
11. While the cake is baking prepare frosting. Whisk Sugar, milk, and vanilla extract to combine.
Top with frosting and sprinkles when the cake is completely cool.
*If you notice the cake getting too dark while baking, cover the cake with foil towards the end of the bake time to prevent burning.
Feel free to double the frosting recipe if you like a thicker layer.