Caramel Apple Cinnamon Braids

These Caramel Apple Cinnamon Braids are your favorite fall treat in breakfast pastry form. After using the same dough to make classic cinnamon rolls, I decided to add a little more fall flavor by making these braids with the same yeast dough and a modified apple filling. This recipe will yield 16 yummy mini braids, but if you have company coming and want to impress with one large braid, just make one large roll and increase the baking time. :)

Caramel Apple Cinnamon Braids

 

Filling

  • 1/4 cup apple butter
  • 1/3 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

 

Dough

  • 1 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 4 teaspoons instant or rapid-rise yeast
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour 
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Glaze

  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Filling:

Combine apple butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, and salt in bowl. Stir in melted butter and vanilla extract and set aside.

Dough:

In a small heat proof bowl, heat ¼ cup of the milk in the microwave until 110 degrees (about 15 to 20 seconds). Then, stir in yeast and 1 teaspoon of sugar and let sit until bubbly.

Mix together flour, baking powder, salt, and remaining 5 teaspoons sugar together in large bowl. Stir in 2 tablespoons butter, yeast mixture, and remaining 1 cup of milk until dough forms. Then, transfer dough to a floured counter and knead until smooth ball forms, about 2 minutes.

Divide the dough into 16 equal parts. I used a kitchen scale to make sure all of my pieces were the same size. Roll each dough ball into rectangles, with the long side parallel to counter edge. Brush dough all over with 2 tablespoons melted butter, leaving ½-inch border on far edge. Spoon filling on dough evenly while leaving a small edge. Loosen dough from counter and roll away from you into a tight log. Cut each log in half lengthwise and then twist one half over and over. Bring both ends of your twist together and form an circle. 

Place each braided circles about 2 inch apart in a prepared sheet pan lined with a silpat or parchment paper. Brush tops of buns with remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Cover buns loosely with plastic wrap and let rise for 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350F.

Bake the braids for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. Then, move to a wire rack to cool. 

While the braids cool, prepare the glaze. In a medium sauce pan, combine the sugar, cream and butter over medium heat until it begins to boil. Boil for 1 minute and then whisk in powdered sugar and vanilla. Let stand for 5 minutes and then drizzle over cooled braids. 

I also topped my braids with chopped pecans but thats optional ;)

Enjoy! 

-B

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