Daring Bakers in September: Cinnamon and Sticky BunsSeptember 30, 2007 at 1:56 pm | Posted in breakfast things, daring bakers, groups, sweet things, sweet yeast breads | 56 Comments
What smells better than bread, cinnamon and sugar baking in the oven? Not a whole lot, really. And that’s why I was so pumped to see that Daring Baker Marce, aka Pip in the City, chose cinnamon/sticky buns for the September DB challenge! She went with a recipe, which you can see here, from Peter Reinhart’s The Bread Baker’s Apprentice. The recipe gives instructions for making a cinnamon-swirled dough that can be customized into either basic cinnamon buns with a white fondant glaze or sticky buns with a caramel/nut topping.
We could pick either variation (cinnamon or sticky), but why make one when you can make both? I thought they would be a great weekend breakfast, but I didn’t want to wake up at 4:00 AM on Saturday to start the long dough making and proofing process. The recipe says that unbaked, formed buns can be retarded for up to two days in the refrigerator, and since I’ve successfully employed this method with other types of bread dough, I thought I’d make this my plan of attack.
On Friday evening, I made the dough (using mostly AP flour combined with about 1/2 cup of bread flour) and gave it it’s first rise. The dough really a cinch to make, and once risen, was beautifully silky smooth and easy to roll up with cinnamon sugar and form into large buns. Half of my rolls were put, just as they were, into a baking dish for cinnamon buns. The other half were put into a separate dish slathered with a sugar, butter and pecan mixture that would bake up into a gooey sticky bun topping. (In other words, I prepared the recipe through Step 4 of the instructions.) Then they both when into the refrigerator for a good night’s rest.
On Saturday morning I pulled out the cinnamon buns to come to room temperature and proof for a couple hours before baking. On Sunday morning I did the same thing with the unbaked sticky buns. I admit that I did get up early both days to do this!
The baked and slightly cooled cinnamon buns got a healthy drizzle of powdered sugar and milk glaze, flavored with a vanilla. The warm sticky buns were turned out to reveal a buttery caramel topping. Both variations were great with a cup of coffee, but which were better? I’d say the sticky buns. The cinnamon rolls were a bit dry inside, but with the sticky buns, the topping oozed into the dough, eliminating any dryness problem there.
I don’t make this kind of thing often (my real buns don’t need this kind of breakfast every week), but when I do, I normally make a sort of hybrid variation of the two…I make a cinnamon swirl using brown sugar instead of granulated and add chopped nuts to it. The brown sugar makes the cinnamon buns bake up caramely and gooey on the inside. Then the baked buns are frosted with a heaping amount of glaze. I’d like to retry Reinhart’s dough recipe using that filling.
Thanks for a great challenge Marce, and if you want to see some more hot buns, be sure to visit the ever-expanding Daring Bakers’ Blogroll!