Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Pecan Honey Sticky Buns

Tuesdays with Dorie.....
This week marks my first concoction as a member of the "Tuesdays with Dorie Baking" club. Essentially, club members prepare one previously decided recipe from Baking: From my Home to Yours, by Dorie Greenspan, and post about it on their blogs each Tuesday.
It's a perfect fit for my goal of "Scandalously Good Food on a Budget." Dorie's creations are worthy of any high end bakery, and yet they are still classic, homey, and affordable when made from scratch.
Pecans Sticky Buns were this week's assignment. But first, the dough-or more specifically the butter-rich brioche. I wouldn't recommend making brioche without a hand mixer, unless you have the triceps of Schwarzenegger. Three sticks of butter must be beaten in, chunk by chunk, to achieve a shiny and relaxed dough. It will need to rise and fall more often than Rome before you're ready to roll it out.
Filled, sliced, and risen again, they're ready to bake.
The pecan sticky buns bake in a thick honey and brown sugar syrup with a generous layer of pecans. I divided the dough in half and made some plain cinnamon rolls with a thick orange glaze (juice, zest, vanilla, powdered sugar)And even with the sticky buns, I made half without nuts, for those picky charges of mine.Gooey, tender, and buttery, these will be the best breakfast rolls that you ever make or eat. Promise. I had trouble deciding which one I liked better, but I think the orange rolls edged out a little advantage. Either way, these rolls are perfect for a special celebratory breakfast. Since they are time consuming, don't attempt to make them unless you know you'll be home for a few hours. But even if you leave the house in the middle of a rising (to see the new Indiana Jones), they still come out perfect!

Pecan Honey Sticky Buns

Estimated Cost for 15: $4.50

Notes: Use only half the brioche dough to make the 15 rolls. Freeze the remaining (filled, rolled, and unsliced) for another time.

For the Glaze:
(1 cup (packed) light brown sugar,1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces,1/4 cup honey,1-1/2 cups pecans (whole or pieces) )
For the Filling:
(1/4 cup sugar,3 tablespoons (packed) light brown sugar,1 tablespoon ground cinnamon,
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature)
For the Buns:
1/2 recipe dough for Golden Brioche loaves (see below), chilled and ready to shape (make the full recipe and cut the dough in half after refrigerating it overnight)
Generously butter a 9-x-13-inch baking pan (a Pyrex pan is perfect for this).
To make the glaze: In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, bring the brown sugar, butter, and honey to a boil over medium-low heat, stirring frequently to dissovle the sugar. Pour the glaze into the buttered pan, evening it out as best you can by tilting the pan or spreading the glaze with a heatproof spatula. Sprinkle over the pecans.
To make the filling: Mix the sugars and cinnamon together in a bowl. If necessary, in another bowl, work the butter with a spatula until it is soft, smooth and spreadable.
To shape the buns: On a flour-dusted work surface, roll the chilled dough into a 16-inch square. Using your fingers or a pastry brush, spread the softened butter over the dough. Sprinkle the dough with the cinnamon sugar, leaving a 1-inch strip bare on the side farthest from you. Starting with the side nearest you, roll the dough into a cylinder, keeping the roll as tight as you can. (At this point, you can wrap the dough airtight and freeze it for up to 2 months . . . . Or, if you want to make just part of the recipe now, you can use as much of the dough as you'd like and freeze the remainder. Reduce the glae recipe accordingly).
With a chef's knife, using a gentle sawing motion, trim just a tiny bit from the ends of the roll if they're very ragged or not well filled, then cut the log into 1-inch thick buns. (Because you trim the ragged ends of the dough, and you may have lost a little length in the rolling, you will get 15 buns, not 16.) Fit the buns into the pan cut side down, leaving some space between them.
Lightly cover the pan with a piece of wax paper and set the pan in a warm place until the buns ahve doubled in volume, about 1 hour and 45 minutes. The buns are properly risen when they are puffy, soft, doubled and, in all likelihood, touching one another.
Getting ready to bake: When the buns have almost fully risen , center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Remove the sheet of wax paper and put the pan on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat. Bake the sticky buns for about 30 minutes, or until they are puffed and gorgeously golden; the glaze will be bubbling away merrily. Pull the pan from the oven.
The sticky buns must be unmolded minutes after they come out of the oven. If you do not have a rimmed platter large enough to hold them, use a baking sheet lined with a silicone mate or buttered foil. Be careful - the glaze is super-hot and super-sticky.
What You'll Need for the Golden Brioche Dough (this recipe makes enough for two brioche loaves. If you divide the dough in half, you would use half for the sticky buns, and you can freeze the other half for a later date, or make a brioche loaf out of it!):
2 packets active dry yeast (each packet of yeast contains approx. 2 1/4 teaspoons)1/3 cup just-warm-to-the-touch water1/3 cup just-warm-to-the-touch whole milk3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour2 teaspoons salt3 large eggs, at room temperature1/4 cup sugar3 sticks (12 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature but still slightly firm
What You'll Need for the Glaze (you would brush this on brioche loaves, but not on the sticky buns):
1 large egg1 tablespoon water
To Make The Brioche: Put the yeast, water and milk in the bowl of a stand mixer and, using a wooden spoon, stir until the yeast is dissolved. Add the flour and salt, and fit into the mixer with the dough hook, if you have one. Toss a kitchen towel over the mixer, covering the bowl as completely as you can-- this will help keep you, the counter and your kitchen floor from being showered in flour. Turn the mixer on and off a few short pulses, just to dampen the flour (yes, you can peek to see how you're doing), then remove the towel, increase the mixer speed to medium-low and mix for a minute or two, just until the flour is moistened. At this point, you'll have a fairly dry, shaggy mess.
Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula, set the mixer to low and add the eggs, followed by the sugar. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat for about 3 minutes, until the dough forms a ball. Reduce the speed to low and add the butter in 2-tablespoon-size chunks, beating until each piece is almost incorporated before adding the next. You'll have a dough that is very soft, almost like batter. Increase the speed to medium-high and continue to beat until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, about 10 minutes.
Transfer the dough to a clean bowl (or wash out the mixer bowl and use it), cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature until nearly doubled in size, 40 to 60 minutes, depending upon the warmth of your room.
Deflate the dough by lifting it up around the edges and letting it fall with a slap to the bowl. Cover the bowl with the plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator. Slap the dough down in the bowl every 30 minutes until it stops rising, about 2 hours, then leave the uncovered dough in the refrigerator to chill overnight. (After this, you can proceed with the recipe to make the brioche loaves, or make the sticky buns instead, or freeze all or part of the dough for later use.)
The next day, butter and flour two 8 1/2-x-4 1/2-inch pans.
Pull the dough from the fridge and divide it into 2 equal pieces. Cut each piece of the dough into 4 equal pieces and roll each piece into a log about 3 1/2 inches long. Arrange 4 logs crosswise in the bottom of each pan. Put the pans on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat, cover the pans lightly with wax paper and leave the loaves at room temperature until the dough almost fills the pans, 1 to 2 hours. (Again, rising time with depend on how warm the room is.)
Getting Ready To Bake: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
To Make the Glaze: Beat the egg with the water. Using a pastry brush, gently brush the tops of the loaves with the glaze.
Bake the loaves until they are well risen and deeply golden, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer the pans to racks to cool for 15 minutes, then run a knife around the sides of the pans and turn the loaves out onto the racks. Invert again and cool for at least 1 hour.

Coming Tomorrow:
Refrigerator Dill Pickles


Katrina said...

The orange glaze looks tasty! Welcome to the cult... er... club!

Anonymous said...

Welcome, so glad you enjoyed your first go with us. Your sticky buns sound great and your dough was beautiful.

Anonymous said...

those look beautiful! I can't wait to try them with the orange glaze! Yum yum!

LyB said...

What a recipe to start with! They look delicious! :)

Kelly said...

Welcome to TWD. This was my 2nd week at it. Great idea to split them...they both look great!

Christine said...

Oh the orange glaze sounds so good! Great job and welcome to the group!

ostwestwind said...

Your dough looks so shiny, great work. Your buns look great and the orange glaze sounds divine.

Ulrike from K├╝chenlatein

Marcy said...

YUM...those look great! I can't wait to try them out!

Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting...I'm so glad to have found your blog because of it. I can't wait to look through your posts for recipe ideas! :)

Mary Kate said...

These rolls look heavenly! Can't wait to find any excuse to make them!

Marie said...

Great looking buns! I love your blog. It's great!

kim said...

yum, they look great! nice job & welcome to twd :)

April said...

They sound and look delicious!

Bumblebutton said...

Welcome! But a warning, you are going to spend all your pennies on butter! Your music really made me smile. Nice job!

Anonymous said...

When I put the word "buns" in the google search engine I was hoping a picture of my wife would come up, but instead this recipe appeared. I can hardly wait for someone to make them for me.
- Cookies.

Lori said...

Yes that dough is beautiful. So smooth. Welcome!

Clumbsy Cookie said...

Dorie herself would be proud of you Prudy!

CB said...

Dividing it in 1/2 to make 2 variations sounds so yum. Welcome to TWD! :)
Clara @ I♥food4thought

Anne said...

Welcome to the group! Your rolls look amazing and I bet the orange ones were tasty too. Great job!

steph- whisk/spoon said...

welcome! you're off to a great start. i'm drooling over those iced buns!! and love the songs that play on your blog--fun!

RitterB's said...

Are you kidding me here Prudy? How am I EVER going to be able to stick to my Weight Watcher points? I tried licking my screen but YUCK! Then again... We all need to die of something RIGHT?!?!? Mine will just be over exposure of BUTTER!

Rachel said...

Great job! Love the blog and welcome to the group. :)

mimi said...

ack! glad i didn't open your blog at work, oops! welcome to TWD, your sticky buns look great!

Rebecca said...

Now, THIS is how to kick off your membership in TWD. Deeeelish!

Madam Chow said...

Welcome to TWD! I'm glad you and your family liked these, and I like how you list how much it cost to make these. Double the price for my area!

RecipeGirl said...

I can't believe how delicious those look right now, this morning!! I had no idea that they would be a cost-effective treat :)

Shari said...

Orange glaze sounds delicious! Welcome to the group.
Shari@Whisk: a food blog

noskos said...

Great looking buns!!!

Jayne said...

Those look great! And the orange glaze sounds like a nice alternative to the honey/brown sugar. Welcome!