Friday, March 30, 2012

Easy Vegan Cinnamon Buns In The Oven


This is a vegan bun fresh out of the oven. And this:

Is a vegan with a bun IN the oven.

Yes, that charming bump explains why I have been absent from the blog for, oh, about a trimester or so. Uh... surprise!

My morning sickness was not actually that terrible (at least compared to the horror stories the internet has to offer) but I had food aversions like you would not believe. I was expecting to have aversions to certain foods, judging by what my previously pregnant friends had told me. My friend Misse, for example, could not even look at tofu. Nicole threw up when someone mentioned raisin bagels. Katie couldn't think about green peppers without feeling disgusting, and Lisa couldn't be in the same room as salad. So I figured something like that might happen. What I didn't really expect was to have an aversion to basically ALL FOOD. Which was a bit of cruel joke, seeing as I spend all my internet time telling you all about how much I love food. Of all kinds. As it was I lived on onion rings, watermelon, "chik'n" nuggets, and Special K. The thought of kale made me want to immediately puke.

But thankfully, that's all in the past. I am feeling much better now and am finally back to cooking and baking like my old self. Well, like my old self with a lot of added naps.


These cinnamon buns were my first Sunday baking project of the (so far) blissful second trimester. They come from a recipe I haven't made since I was in university, which I think originated in a non-vegan version in a cookbook for kids owned by one of my roommates (she owned the cookbook, not the kids). I used to make them in a muffin tin, so each bun was baked individually, but this time I decided to throw them all in the pan in the hopes that it would make them a bit gooey-er and softer over all.

vegan cinnamon bun

The pan method worked out just perfectly. The buns were soft and gooey. The cooking time was a bit longer, but patience is a virtue, as we all know. The nice thing about living with my parents is I have three people to test baked goods for me instead of just one. I knew this recipe was a winner when both the Man of Science and my mom said, "Oh, this is good!" after taking just one bite.

This recipe also gave me the perfect oppourtunity to enjoy my mother's dough scraper tool, which is something I will sadly miss when we move back to our own home in a few months. The scraper helped me roll the dough up without it tearing and then I used it to cut the tube into individual buns. I may need to buy one for myself. You know, after I've bought a crib, diapers, stroller and a whole bunch of other perhaps more pressing things.

vegan cinnamon buns

2 cups all purpose flour (plus extra for kneading/rolling)
1/4 cup unrefined sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup vegan margarine or shortening (I used Earth Balance whipped buttery spread)
3/4 cup soy milk
1 tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 3 tbsp warm water

1/3 cup softened margarine
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup unrefined regular sugar
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/3 cup chopped pecans (optional)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Grease one 8 by 8 inch glass pan.

In a large bowl, mix flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.

Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly.

Combine flax, water, and soy milk, then add to flour mixture.

Knead the dough, adding more flour as needed, until it is no longer sticky. Don't go overboard, it's not bread and you don't want to over-work the dough.

Roll the dough into a large rectangle, about half an inch thick. Spread the top side of the dough with the 1/3 cup of softened margarine, then sprinkle the brown sugar, unrefined sugar, and spices.

Starting at one of the shorter ends, carefully roll the dough into a tube. Slice the tube into 8 or 9 rounds and place the rounds in your pan, spread out to take up all of the space. Sprinkle with pecans if you like.

Bake for 20-25 minutes. My buns did not brown as much as I expected them to, so don't wait for that to happen before you take them out. The good old toothpick test will help determine when they're done.

You may notice the butter and sugar bubbling up around the edges of the buns and wonder, like me, if your out-of-the-oven buns will be sitting in a lake of liquid. Fear not! The bubbling sugar and butter will settle down into a very delicious yet manageable caramelly goo on the bottom of your pan. Eat up!

One Note:

This is absolutely NOT a representation of what I've been eating to nourish the baby-to-be. And actually I've become even more sensitive to sugar, which means avoiding almost all sweets unless I've had a very solid meal beforehand. For example, this is what I ate before I was able to enjoy one half of one of these cinnamon buns:


Those are Tofurky cold cuts behind the vegetables, before anyone gets all antsy. Other healthy things I've been enjoying a lot of include coconut water (I am feeling thirsty enough for two, and this is the one drink that satisfies), granola bars, salads, almonds, whole grain toast, dried apricots and cashew banana smoothies.

Oh, and p.s. despite the day of publication, this isn't an April Fool's joke, I promise.



the [sugar] apothecary said...

Ohhh yay! Congratulations, girlie!!! You look lovely, and so do those cinnamon buns! I am so, super excited for you (as long as those food aversions settle down a bit). I've been fiending for sticky, sugary cinnamon buns lately... How did you know?!

Keep yourself healthy and comfortable, my dear. Congrats! :)

Anonymous said...

Ahhh that is so exciting! I have been reading your blog for a very long time, and your posts always make me happy. I wish you the best!

Blake said...

Congrats on the bun in the oven! And I would really like some of those cinnamon buns in my (literal) oven right now.

Jennifer Parker said...

That's amazing news and I'm so happy for you! Though it is very far into the future, I'm looking forward to your input into vegan friendly kid's foods. I have two and they can be pretty picky! It's always a challenge to find something they like. All the best to you and your new little one!

foodfeud said...

Congratulations! Be healthy and well!

nancy said...

CONGRATULATIONS! also, these buns are a must-bake.

Lois said...

So lovely, congratulations. Pregnancy is a wonderful time, once you get past the early bits.

Anonymous said...

Glad you're back - I love your blog and read it from here in the UK whenever I can!

VeganLisa said...

Congratulations! I'm happy to hear you moved into the second trimester and are starting to feel more yourself. I look forward to following along and celebrating your little one's arrival.

Vegyogini said...

Congratulations to you and the Man of Science!

Sara (The Veggie Eco-Life) said...

I always get excited when someone tells she's pregnant! Congratulations! I hope everything goes well :). Must've been hard disliking all these foods. But those buns must make everything better ;)

Vic Robinson said...

Whoa! Looks amazing! Get those veggies out of here! :)

Maggie Muggins said...

Congratulations! My first instinct was to (of course) think this was an April Fools joke, but I’m so happy it’s not! Both buns look great!

Sarah B @ Bake + Bike said...

Woooo glad you are back and congrats!!!

Those cinnamon buns look fantastic - every time I try to make them they turn out horribly misshapen (but still yummy).

Lynn said...

Congratulations, I'm so happy people as adorable as you and the Man of Science are creating (sure to be) adorable babies. Yay! I'll be filing away the cinnamon bun recipe for Christmas morning.

T said...

Welcome back!

And.... OMG CONGRATS!!! What a big year for you and the Man of Science!

And the cinnamon buns look ab-fab.

Eve Love said...

Thanks for that easy recipe. I made those yesterday and enjoyed it very much in the afternoon.

you look lovely with that bun.

candace said...

"Lisa couldn't be in the same room as salad" really made me laugh :)

Glad you're back!

Elaine Shandra said...

Congrats on the baby and thank you for the yeast-free cinnamon bun recipe, yea!

Mihl said...

Congratulations! So sorry to hear about your food aversions. That sounds really tough.

unlockdestiny said...

OMG. I just made these and they're INCREDIBLE! thank you!!

(I just switched to eating vegan, and I've been going INSANE for cinnamon rolls)