Wednesday, July 15, 2020

The bonding and blending of a granddaughter, grandmother, cinnamon rolls, and strawberries!

What happens when you add a granddaughter who is celebrating a birthday, a grandmother, a host of baking ingredients, some cups of strawberries, and an almost new kitchen? You get the best homemade cinnamon rolls, strawberry jam, and scones.

Some ingredients for cinnamon rolls and strawberry jam!
 Emiline, our oldest granddaughter, recently celebrated a birthday. When her mother asked what she wanted for her birthday. Her reply was simple: “I want Grandma Hammon to teach me how to make cinnamon rolls and strawberry jam."

Emiline and her ingredients

So much for a new Barbie doll or anything unicornish!

So, Emiline and Joanne gathered up the necessary ingredients, and we drove to their new home in Draper.

Emiline and Grandma Hammon
Soon, Emiline and her grandmother put their heads together and read the recipes, and then organized the ingredients for both the strawberry jam and cinnamon rolls to make sure everything was there.

First the strawberry jam…

They washed the strawberries and then carefully cut out the green stems. Grandma showed Emiline a slick way to save as much berry as possible as you cut out the stems. Then, Emiline sliced and placed the sliced strawberries into a glass bowl.

Let the slicing begin!
Now, the work began for Emiline as she began smashing and smushing the strawberries. Soon, with a bit of elbow grease and effort, that was done, she added the pectin and let the berries sit.

"Smashing these strawberries is pretty hard!"

"Let's try with both of us smashing berries!"
Now, on to cinnamon rolls….

Grandma told Emiline how important the yeast was, so they needed to be careful how they created it.. Grandma showed her how to measure the warm water, using a thermometer, so it was just the right temperature as not to “kill” the yeast. They used the thermometer to make sure the water was not too hot.

Checking the temperature of the water.

Then, they poured the yeast into the warm water and mixed.

Measuring and adding yeast to water...
While that was working, Emiline went back to her jam where she began to add the sugar. Her comment was, “Wow! I didn’t know you had to put in so much sugar!” And that is the reason everyone likes jam—six berries and five cups of sugar. Delicious!

Adding sugar to stawberries--an awakening!
Once the strawberries and pectin were mixed, sugar added, Emiline poured the jam into four plastic containers to sit and gel and then to the freezer for safe storage--for a time!

Emiline and her first jam!

3.25 cups of strawberries + four cups of sugar = strawberry jam!
Now, on to Round 2 of the cinnamon rolls making….

The mixing of the dough
Emiline began adding the ingredients: the yeast mixture and then began adding cup by cup of flour all the while the mixer was mixing until the mixture was just perfect for rolling out and continuing the process of making the cinnamon rolls. Once the dough was ready, it was set aside to rise.

Once the dough was ready, Joanne began to show her how to select the ingredients for the filling.

 Grandma directed her to “punch” the dough to deflate it. They Emiline spread some flour on her new countertops and begin to roll out the dough into a square.

"So, how flat shall I roll this dough?"

Basting and sprinkling: the art of making cinnamon rolls.
 She rolled out the dough, cover the dough with melted butter and sprinkled on the special ingredients of sugar and cinnamon.

Poof! Cinnamon rolls ready to rise once more before baking!
 After basting it with butter and sprinkling all of the dry ingredients on top, she cut out the dough into strips, and rolled each of them up until they looked like a folded flat cookie and placed on a pan to rise some more.
Almost there....almost!
 Not long after, the cinnamon rolls came out of the oven, sat for a moment or two, and then Emiline and Grandma began to frost them with a powdered sugar frosting.

Butter + powdered sugar + creme cheese + vanilla = the topping for a divine cinnamon roll!
 Before too long, they were ready to be eaten and enjoyed. And they were delicious!

Bonus round: Scones!

Then, the bonus round of baking and cooking scones for dinner. They made some more dough, let it rise for a moment or two, rolled it out, and then cut it into strips--and a couple of circles.

Scone dough

Cutting the dough for scones
While Emiline was busily rolling out and cutting the dough, Grandma was carefully heating up the grease so they could fry the bread, thus making fry bread for dinner.
Cooking the fry bread....
After dinner, Emiline opened up her presents.

Emiline and her new headphones
Who said birthdays had to be filled with presents? Emiline’s favorite present for her birthday was working alongside her Grandmother Hammon while they made strawberry jam, cinnamon rolls, and scones, all in one afternoon.

Emiline and Grandma Hammon (Joanne) making jam together!
Happy Birthday Emiline!

Grandpa and Grandma Hammon