I make my cinnamon roll dough the night before, and let the first
rise happen overninght in the refridgerator, then the next morning I
shape and bake them. But I don't know how much time that gains, it
takes about 3 hours for the dough to warm and do the 2nd rise (that
long time may be because my recipe has 2 sticks of butter in it and
it seems to take awhile to warm up).
I rarely make them, because they're really not the kind of food I
want to feed my family. But for I usually make them for Christmas
morning. When I do, I get up early, roll out the dough, then go back
to bed for a couple of hours.
FWIW, here's my recipe:
[Recipe is from the now defunct L.A. Times Magazine, which named a
local bakery (the name of which I can't remember) as the source. My
notes are in brackets.]
2 packages instant yeast (or 41/2 teaspoons)
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
4 1/2 to 6 cups bread flour [or use AP flour with 2 tablespoons vital
wheat gluten added]
1/2 cup warm water
1 cup buttermilk
4 egg yolks
2 sticks very soft butter
1/2 cup (1 stick) melted butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon
2 3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Make dough (use a heavy duty mixer):
Have all ingredients at room temperature. Mix 21/2 cups of flour,
yeast, sugar and salt. In separate small bowl lightly beat egg
yolks, water and buttermilk. Add egg/buttermilk mixture to dry
ingredients. Beat well for several minutes. Mix in butter then add
remainder of flour, kneading until very soft but not sticky dough is
formed, another 5-7 minutes or so.
Do either "A" or "B", following [B is always my preference]:
A Let dough rise, covered, at room temperature until doubled in bulk
(about 1 hour). OR
B Put in a plastic bag, which will hold twice the volume of the
dough and refrigerate overnight.
Make filling and assemble:
Mix the cinnamon and sugar. Roll the dough into a large rectangle
about 15" by 10". Brush with the melted butter (save any unused)
Sprinkle with the cinnamon-sugar mixture.
Roll up from the long edge. Pinch the edge to seal. Using a sharp
knife or dental floss cut into 12 to 15 rounds. Place in a
well-greased pan. Brush with any unused melted butter. (Can be
refrigerated overnight at this point.)
Cover and let rise away from drafts until doubled in bulk. [This can
take from 1/2 hour to 3 hours if it was refrigerated.]
Bake at 375 F for 20 to 25 minutes, or until light golden brown. Cool in pan.
Mix vanilla extract and powdered sugar. Add enough water to make a
glaze and drizzle over the rolls.
[I very often make 1/2 of this recipe: it mixes easily in the food
processor and makes 6 cinnamon rolls. I do the first kneed about 1
minute and the next a bit over 2 minutes past the point when the
dough is the right consistency. When I make a full recipe I make 15 of them.]