Vegan Pear Swirl Rolls + Cinnamon Frosting

To be honest with you: It was only 45 degrees Fahrenheit this morning, but I still put on a really huge, bulky, high-necked sweater. And it feels amazing. I don’t care that it’ll probably end up being 59 degrees today. I do what I want! And, I may or may not be ordering a brand spanking new Icelandic sweater. Just couldn’t find the right one when we were there in February, so I’m ordering from a sweet woman in Reykjavik who customizes them for each order. Expensive? Yes. But I consider this an investment in my well being, warmth, and overall happiness.
I originally thought to put fruit in cinnamon roll-type things because of a post about fig and dark chocolate cinnamon buns. Come on, how great does that sound? But the truth is, I don’t love chocolate and I especially don’t like chunks of it baked into things I’m eating. The chunks get stuck in my teach and it’s just awful. I like the dough part of things. So, anyway, ditched the chocolate and made this recipe more my own. Plus, when you have vegan buttercream hanging around, you add cinnamon to it and spread it on whatever you’re making.

A note on the pears in this recipe: I have been honored to receive a big bag of these sweet jewels every year (for the past three or so) from my friends’ mother. They have a farm with lots of fruit trees, a great garden, cows, CHRISTMAS TREES, and the happiest home. It’s so warm and wonderful. The pears are really delicious, but they are also so special because Jane is a part of them and because I feel really lucky to have them shared with me. 

So, make these lil’ babies and have a good weekend.

Recipe – Buns

1 1/2 tsp active dry yeast

3/4 c full fat coconut milk (can)

2 Tbsp olive oil

2 Tbsp granulated sugar

2 c all-purpose flour

1 tsp salt

1/2 c brown sugar

1 1/2 c diced fruit (I used pear)

3 tsp ground cinnamon

Heat the milk to about 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Add in the sugar, oil, and yeast. Let sit and bubble for about five minutes – or until it sounds appropriately yeasty and is looking alive. Add in the flour and salt. Mix together with a wooden spoon until it’s thick enough that you have to switch to your hands. Knead for about five minutes until the dough is nice and smooth. Add more flour if necessary. Form into a ball and put into a greased bowl to rise in a warm area for about 40 minutes, or until it doubles in size. 
Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Punch down the dough and roll it out to a about 1/4″ thick rectangle. Spread 4 Tbsp olive oil over the dough. Sprinkle on brown sugar, cinnamon, and fruit. Roll up the dough like regular cinnamon rolls. Cut into 8 pieces and put into a greased baking dish that fits them all comfortably. I used a lasagne pan and a monkey bread pan (doubled the recipe). Let the finished, unbaked cinnamon rolls sit on top of the warm oven for about 20 minutes, to let it rise a bit more. Then bake for 30 minutes, or until nice and golden brown. Let cool while you prepare the frosting.

Vegan Cinnamon Buttercream

1/4 c nonhydrogenated, GMO-free shortening

1/4 c vegan butter

2 c powdered sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/8 c non-dairy milk

1  1/2 tsp cinnamon

Cream together the shortening and vegan butter until light and fluffy. Add in powdered sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Mix for about 2 minutes until combined and fluffy. Add in non-dairy milk and mix with your mixer for another 3 minutes, until very fluffy. Spread over your lovely little cinnamon buns.