I don’t really do Halloween. I have bad experiences associated with the holiday, usually involving being carted around by my dad who tried to get me to trick or treat while I embarrassingly resisted. No offense dad. The day would always end up with us at a restaurant, eating dinner and people-watching as if we were standing behind a glass window. If there wasn’t the opportunity for candy, I really would have given up on the holiday much sooner. Clearly I have an inclination towards baked goods, but when I do eat candy I love me some reese’s, snickers, and m&ms. I sort through bowls and bowls for them. I have been known to just buy the whole darn halloween pack with my favorites so I don’t have to be picky. Things haven’t changed much over the years.Before my transition from baked goods to candy, I was craving one last thing. The sticky sticky buns from Flour Bakery. Don’t ask me why- the heart wants what it wants. When I looked up the recipe, though, it seemed to be overly involved, and maybe I just wasn’t in the mood to make something that elaborate, but I ditched that plan and looked for another recipe. I can’t honestly say this recipe is quick and simple. It took longer than I wanted it to and annoyed me every step of the way, as I wanted to leave my house but couldn’t because the dough was rising, ready to be rolled, rising again, and ready to be baked. These buns were such a pain.
But they are so, so good. The dough is heavenly, and it makes a huge difference to make it homemade. It tends to harden a bit after the first day, but nothing a quick zap in the microwave can’t fix and more, making it bubbly and delicious. I don’t even need to sell you on the caramelized pecans, do I?
Ultimate Sticky Buns
from Bon Appetit
1 cup warm water (105°F to 115°F)
4 teaspoons dry yeast
2/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup dry nonfat milk powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
2 large eggs
4 1/4 cups (or more) all purpose flour
1 1/4 cups (packed) golden brown sugar
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup dark corn syrup
1/4 cup water
2 cups pecan halves
4 teaspoons sugar
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Mix 1/4 cup warm water, yeast, and pinch of sugar in small bowl. Let stand until foamy, about 8 minutes. Using electric mixer, beat remaining sugar, butter, milk powder, and salt in large bowl until well blended. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Mix in remaining 3/4 cup warm water and yeast mixture, then 3 cups flour, 1 cup at a time. Using rubber spatula, mix in 1 cup flour, scraping down sides of bowl frequently (dough will be soft and sticky). Sprinkle 1/4 cup flour onto work surface and knead until smooth and elastic, adding more flour if sticky, about 8 minutes.
Butter another large bowl. Add dough; turn to coat. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let dough rise in warm area until doubled, about 2 1/2 hours.
Butter two 10-inch round cake pans with 2-inch high sides. Beat brown sugar, 1/2 cup butter, honey, corn syrup, and 1/4 cup water in medium bowl to blend. Spread half of glaze in bottom of each prepared pan. Sprinkle 1 cup pecans over each.
Punch down dough. Divide dough in half. Roll each dough piece out on floured work surface to 12×9-inch rectangle. Brush any excess flour off dough. Spread remaining butter over dough rectangles, dividing equally. Mix 4 teaspoons sugar and cinnamon in small bowl. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar over rectangles. Starting at 1 long side, tightly roll up each rectangle into log. Cut each log into 12 rounds. Place 12 rounds, cut side down, in each prepared pan, spacing evenly. Cover with plastic wrap. (Can be made 1 day ahead; refrigerate.) Let buns rise in warm area until almost doubled, about 1 hour (or 1 hour 25 minutes if refrigerated).
Preheat oven to 375°F. Bake buns until deep golden brown, about 30 minutes. Run small knife around pan sides to loosen sticky buns. Turn hot buns out onto platter. Cool about 30 minutes and serve.