Growing up, I never put the words “break” and “fast” together with breakfast. The Yom Kippur break-fast in my home was savory dinner fare. Then I moved to Chicago and worked at a synagogue where I was in charge of the 100-person community break-fast. The decadent event was held not far from Wrigley Field at Ann Sather’s, a popular brunch spot known for its cinnamon rolls. The restaurant opened just for us as soon as services concluded, and we would troop over, a hungry, repentant mass, for a breakfast buffet served in the darkening evening light.
I’ve been desperately seeking cinnamon rolls like the ones we ate then, and finally found luck thanks to Google and some festive pre-Yom Kippur recipe testing.
Ann Sather’s Cinnamon Rolls
Makes 12 rolls
1 envelope (1/4 oz.) active dry yeast
1 tsp. sugar
1/4 cup warm water
1 cup milk, scalded, cooled
1/4 cup (2 oz.) butter, melted
1/3 cup sugar
11/2 tsp. salt
2 1/2 to 3 cups all-purpose flour
4 Tbs. butter, room temperature
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 Tbs. ground cinnamon
Powdered sugar glaze (optional), recipe follows
In a large bowl, stir yeast and 1 tsp. sugar into warm water and let stand for five minutes. Stir in milk, melted butter, 1/3 cup sugar, salt and 1 cup flour. Beat with a spoon or electric mixer until smooth. Gradually stir in 11/2 cups flour, keeping dough smooth. If dough is still moist, stir in 1 Tbs. of flour at a time to make a soft dough. Cover with a dry cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about one hour.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Divide dough in half. On a lightly oiled board, roll out (with lightly floured rolling pin) and stretch one piece of dough to make 12-by-8-inch rectangle. Spread 2 Tbs. of the soft butter over top of dough. Sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. Beginning on long side, roll up tightly, jelly-roll fashion. Repeat with remaining dough.
Cut dough into 2-inch slices. Place on greased and floured baking sheets. Let dough rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes. Bake in oven for 12 to 15 minutes, or until golden brown. Take baking sheets out of oven and place cinnamon rolls on a wire rack to cool.
Top rolls with a sugar glaze immediately, if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Powdered Sugar Glaze
Adapted from “Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook”
Makes 1/2 cup
1 cup sifted powdered sugar
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbs. milk, plus additional as needed
Combine sugar, vanilla and 1 Tbs. milk in a small bowl. Stir in additional milk, 1 tsp. at a time, until icing is loose enough to drizzle.
Feta Feathered Eggs
6-8 slices challah (sliced 1-inch thick)
3 cups spinach leaves, washed and torn
1 cup monterey jack cheese, shredded
1/2 cup crumbled feta
11/2 cups milk
1/2 tsp. salt
Freshly ground black pepper
11/2 tsp. fresh dill, minced
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Place bread in pan in single layer. Evenly distribute spinach over the top. Scatter with cheese. Beat eggs in a bowl with milk, salt, pepper and dill. Pour over bread and cheese and spinach. Bake 45 minutes. Cool slightly. Serve.