Puff Pastry Cinnamon Twists

Puff Pastry Cinnamon Twists

Puff pastry cinnamon twists are a quick and buttery sweet treat to make when you already have puff pastry in your freezer.

No puff pastry in your freezer? No worries. I’ve got you covered.

These puff pastry cinnamon twists were made for the reddit 52 week baking challenge (Week 35: Laminated Dough). We are now two-thirds of the way through 2021….

Tips and tricks for making these cinnamon twists

The ratio of ingredients for the puff pastry in this recipe has been adapted from the Pie and Pastry Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum.

One of the most important rules when working with pastry dough is to keep it cold. If your dough starts to warm, put it in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes. I like to roll on a floured cutting board for ease, but also because I can pop the whole cutting board into the refrigerator if need be.

Panel 1: When rolling puff pastry, you want to be careful not to roll over the edge of the dough, smashing the layers together. So I start in the middle of the dough and roll away from me. If you are rolling out a rectangle, rotate 90 degrees (a quarter turn) and roll.

Panel 2: Repeat until the dough is the about 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick. My slightly more than half pound of puff pastry rolled into a rectangle 7.5 by 13 inches.

Panel 3: Use a pastry brush to brush the melted butter evenly.

Panel 4: Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and use your hands to press it gently down into the butter.

Panel 5: Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter to cut 3/4 inch strips. You should have about 16.

Panel 6: Holding the strip steady in one hand and use the other to turn it into twists. Press the ends of the twists down onto lined baking sheet so they don’t unroll when baking.

a tablesppon in a bowl of cinnamon sugar

FAQs about these puff pastry cinnamon twists

Do I have to weigh my ingredients?

No, you don’t have to do anything. But you will get better/more consistent results if you weigh your ingredients, especially for baking. I’m offering to buy a basic kitchen scale for the first 10 U.S. readers to sign up for my newsletter (see below) and comment that you would like to use a kitchen scale.

What’s the difference between classic puff pastry and quick puff or rough puff pastry?

Classic puff pastry is made by pounding a bunch of butter into a square, wrapping it up in dough, and then rolling out a series of folds and turns to get layers and layers of butter and dough that puff up when baked. While bashing the butter can be therapeutic, classic puff pastry requires making sure that the butter doesn’t get too warm. Which is really hard to do when it’s hot outside.

With quick puff pastry (or rough puff, if you’re a GBBO fan), large chunks of butter are incorporated into flour like a pie crust, and the dough is similarly rolled and folded as with classic puff pastry. Rough puff pastry doesn’t puff as much as classic puff pastry, but it is sooooo much easier to make, especially in a warm kitchen.

Does it matter which butter I use for my puff pastry?

All butter is not the same (reference: my chocolate chip cookies). That is particularly true when making puff pastry or pie crust, where the butter plays a starring role. If you can, use a European style butter with a higher fat content.

Can I just buy puff pastry sheets?

Yes, just make sure to buy one that is made with butter. I’ve used this brand before with good results.

What can I do if I have extra cinnamon sugar?

Make cinnamon toast. Cinnamon donuts. Mmm donuts.

What similar things could I make with puff pastry?

Oooh, puff pastry cheese twists. Grate some Parmesan and add a bit of paprika to it and sprinkle the cheese mixture over the butter. Twist and bake as in the basic recipe. Or go classic with palmiers.

Can I freeze these puff pastry cinnamon twists?

You could, although you’d get better results if you freeze the puff pastry (3-6 months) and then do the rolling, twisting, and baking when you want to snack on them.

How long does butter last in the refrigerator or freezer?

Salted butter will last for a longer time than unsalted butter, but both should be stored in the freezer. Unsalted butter can be stored in the freezer in its original packaging for a few months before it starts to taste off.

baked puff pastry cinnamon twists in a row

Puff Pastry Cinnamon Twists

Servings 16 twists
Author uglyducklingbakery

Equipment

  • Food processor

Ingredients

Puff pastry (a little more than 1 pound)

  • ¾ cup (5.8 ounce/164 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour plus more for rolling
  • ¼ cup (1.1 ounce/31 grams) cake flour
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 2 sticks (16 tablespoons/8 ounces/227 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 0.3 cup (2.4 ounces/68 grams) cold water

Cinnamon twists

  • 1 stick (8 tablespoons/4 ounces/113 grams) butter, melted
  • ½ cup (3.5 ounces/100 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • pinch salt

Instructions

Puff pastry

  • Add the flours and salt to the food processor and blitz until mixed.
    3/4 cup (5.8 ounce/164 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup (1.1 ounce/31 grams) cake flour, 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Add the cubes of cold butter and pulse about 10 times.
    2 sticks (16 tablespoons/8 ounces/227 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • Add the cold water and blitz until the pastry just starts to come together.
    0.3 cup (2.4 ounces/68 grams) cold water
  • Dump the mixture out onto a clean cutting board or lightly floured countertop and mash it together with your hands just until it forms into a ball.
  • Use a rolling pin to roll it into a thick rectangle with the long edges to the sides, and then fold it like a business letter. That is, fold the bottom third up over the middle third and then fold the top third over the folded bottom and middle thirds.
    This is fold #1. Make a note to yourself as a mark on a piece of paper or something like that. I've seen a colleague use their kid's abacus to keep track.
  • Rotate the folded dough clockwise 90 degrees or one quarter turn. Repeat the steps above by rolling out the dough into a thick rectangle and folding it like a business letter. This is fold #2. Make another mark. Rotate the dough clockwise another 90 degrees.
  • Repeat for fold #3 and #4.
  • If making these cinnamon twists, cut the dough in half using a sharp knife. Wrap one half in plastic wrap and put into the refrigerator for 1-2 hours. Double wrap the other half in plastic wrap and place it in a small freezer bag for future puff pastry treats.

Puff pastry cinnamon twists

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. Take the wrapped puff pastry out of the refrigerator a few minutes before you want to roll it out.
  • Roll out the pastry into a rectangle about 7 to 8 inches on the short side and 1/8 inch thick.
  • Use a pastry brush to brush the rectangle thickly but evenly with melted butter.
    1 stick (8 tablespoons/4 ounces/113 grams) butter, melted
  • Combine the sugar, cinnamon, and salt and sprinkle it evenly over the rectangle. Use your hands to pat it gently into the butter.
    1/2 cup (3.5 ounces/100 grams) granulated sugar, 1 tablespoon cinnamon, pinch salt
  • Slice the rectangle into about 3/4 inch strips that will be 7 to 8 inches long.
  • Holding one end steady, twist the other end of the pastry as tightly as you can, and press the ends down onto a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat. This will help prevent the twist from unwinding while baking.
  • Put the baking sheet into the freezer for about 30 minutes prior to baking. This will again help to prevent the twists from unraveling.
  • Bake for about 20 minutes, until the pastry is crisp and slightly browned.
  • Let cool on the baking sheet. These cinnamon twists can be stored in an air tight container at room temperature for about one week.

Notes

The puff pastry can also be made in a stand mixer or by hand.
Bleached, all-purpose flour can be substituted for the flours in the recipe.
If you want shorter twists, fold the dough in half prior to twisting, press down on the ends to seal it, twist away, and bake as directed.

What’s next?

If you make these puff pastry cinnamon twists, please leave a comment here or share a pic with me on Instagram!

Check out some other uglyducklingbakery pastry recipes like these Nutella poptarts, strawberry apple pie, or this rainbow fruit tart.

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Previous challenges:
Week 1: New Year new recipe – blueberry galette
Week 2: seasonal – Smitten Kitchen’s grapefruit pound cake
Week 3: Great British Bake Off – Kate’s sticky toffee apple caramel cake
Week 4: Australia – sausage rolls
Week 5: bite sized – cookies
Week 6: Chinese New Year – mushroom bao
Week 7: new tool – baguette baker
Week 8: chocolate – chocolate peanut butter bonbons
Week 9: timed bake – under 1 hour! chocolate chip scones
Week 10: allergy/diet restriction – macarons
Week 11: quick breads – kale and cheese quick bread
Week 12: signature bake – purple cow bread
Week 13: enriched breads (kale and cheese babka fail)
Week 14: childhood favorite –fudgy triple layer chocolate cake with chocolate ganache frosting
Week 15: decorating challenge – purple velvet cake
Week 16: crispy crunchy – bacon cheddar popcorn
Week 17: p52 of a favorite cookbook, or your favorite blog – chocolate peanut butter drip cake
Week 18: pâte à choux – bacon cheese puffs
Week 19: veggies turned sweet – red velvet beet waffles
Week 20: plating – chocolate chip cookie (butter challenge)
Week 21: Birthday Party! – chocolate orange cake
Weed 22: Scandinavian – Swedish apple cake (plus a bonus sourdough discard apple cake)
Week 23: Layers – Pecan apple oat bars (post is pending)
Week 24: Tarts – rainbow fruit tart
Week 25: Bagels and donuts – maple donut cake
Week 26: Surprise inside – surprise heart yeast bread (pending)
Week 27: Local favorite – Rainier cherry crisp
Week 28: Seasonal ingredients – blackberry lemon bread
Week 29: French dessert – peanut butter banana clafoutis (a classic with non-classic flavors!)
Week 30: Savory baking – pizza
Week 31: Unusual ingredient – juniper lime drizzle cake
Week 32: Gelatin (homemade marshmallows) and 33: Picnic – peanut butter rice krispie treats
Week 34: Brunch – spinach and feta muffins

Next week: Friendship challenge – Planning a treat from Angela at Flash in the Pans!

three puff pastry cinnamon twists standing upright in a glass


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