Bunny Buns

recipe from Mommy's Kitchen

1 - (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1 1/2 - cups warm water (110 degrees F)
3 1/4 - cups all-purpose flour
1/2 of regular box (18.5 oz) cake mix (approx 1 1/4 cups)
1/4 cup butter, softened to brush on baked rolls
Cinnamon Sugar
Colored Easter Sprinkles
You will also need for the icing, if desired
2 - cups powdered sugar
2 - tablespoons milk
1/2 - teaspoon vanilla extract
1 - teaspoon butter, softened
2 drops red food coloring

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes. Stir in the flour and cake mix. Beat until dough is smooth. Add some flour on the counter and knead any additional flour into the dough. Knead until it is no longer sticky. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 40 minutes - 1 hour. Punch down the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface.
Roll dough into a long rectangle 1/2-inch thick. Cut dough into strips 1/2-inch wide and 14-inches long.  Reserve 1-2 of the strips to cut into pieces about 1/2-inch long and roll into small balls, to use for bunny tails.

photo from Mommy's Kitchen
Place one long piece of dough on parchment paper or a greased baking sheet. Place one end of the strip over the other to make a loop; bring the end that is underneath up and cross it over the other end. Place a ball of dough on top of the bottom loop, to be the tail.

Brush the bunnies with melted butter and sprinkle on a mixture of cinnamon and sugar.

Cover the bunnies with plastic wrap that has been sprayed with baking spray. Allow the rolls to rise in a warm place for 45-60 minutes, until nearly double in size. Remove plastic wrap and bake at 375 degrees for 12-15 minutes.

Let cool and then brush on simple icing and add holiday sprinkles to the plain rolls. Just add the simple icing to the cinnamon ones.

Simple Icing
2 - cups powdered sugar
2 - tablespoons milk
1/2 - teaspoon vanilla extract
1 - teaspoon butter, softened
to make it pink, you will need to add 2 drops of liquid food coloring

Stir the powdered add the butter and blend with a fork. Add the milk and the vanilla extract and mix until you have the consistency of a pourable glaze. Brush on the glaze while the bunnies are still warm. Add colored sprinkles.

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