SMS ~ Sticky Buns with Toasted Pecans

Go through current cooking magazines, printed out recipes and Julia Child cookbook to make dinner menus for the next 3 days; select and write-up each day's menu; go through each recipe to check for ingredients currently not in kitchen; shop for ingredients; and go home having a great feeling of accomplishment. Start SMS, looking at list of ingredients, go to grate orange, UGH! I missed the damn orange! What in the world do I have to replace the orange? Asking hubby and Ashley, Do you think lemon will taste okay with a sticky sauce over the buns? Hubby wants to know what are sticky buns? Are you kidding? I have made sticky buns before . . . they are cinnamon rolls replaced with a sticky sugar sauce for the cream cheese frosting. Larry states he is not sure what they will be like and Ashley, well lets not go there because my eye will only twitch more thinking about the conversation again. Answer: Do not ask questions that only complicate and make a mountain out of a mole hill! Annoyed and still orangeless, I now have clarity and know there is a lemon in the refrigerator. If no one likes them, no one has to eat them . . . humphf.

After pacing a few times, I decide to get started. Getting started for me is reading the recipe through, then reading each section as I make this part of the recipe. Also, I buy Red Star yeast at Costco and keep the yeast in the refrigerator. What I want to know is if the yeast will take longer to kick in because there is no mixing the yeast granules in tepid milk or water? Melissa also calls for boiling water and setting both in the oven with the water beneath the buns as a rising aide. My kitchen is naturally warm from always having something cooking or baking so I have never had a problem with rising dough but I am always curious about new methods.

After making the dough, using lemon zest, I make the sticky sauce using Grade B maple syrup. Grade B has a stronger, true maple flavor. I am always surprised how Grade B maple syrup is more expensive then Grade A.

The sticky sauce is poured into a butter 9 x 13 baking dish and now we roll the dough out to make a cinnamon and sugar filling; using an egg wash to adhere the cinnamon/sugar mix to the dough.

Making 12 rolls does not sound like a lot but when you think about how many people are in the house (3), 12 rolls may not get eaten right away and by the second day, rolls are not as appetizing to nibble on unless a tad re-heated.

Set the dough on the sticky sauce and refrigerate overnight, leaving me to feel great about making the rolls during the week and adding them in lunches for work.

If I am going to make a recipe that requires an overnight refrigeration then I want the only part left be throwing the dish directly in the oven. I am not a morning person so if I am going to mess up, there is a sure bet I will make the mistake in the morning. Heating boiling water, pouring this into a baking dish and balancing the lot into the bottom shelf of the oven is pretty tricky when you are not awake. The buns did rise according to the instructions and I know this is a quick rise method when the dough is cold but I am really not excited about the balancing boiling water part and would rather just let the dough re-rise all by itself.

My last tricky part is my own fault. I did not want to take each bun out to a platter and smear the sticky sauce over the top . . . so I just flipped the 9 x 13 baking dish with the platter set snugly on top and waalaa! No hot sticky sauce leaked out while flipping. My heart always races on this part, probably my conscience telling me how stupid I am being for my impatience.

We used pecans on half of the buns and left the other half without . . . for Ashley because she doesn't like nuts. Being a teenager, I am sure that part will probably change tomorrow.

Sweet Melissa Sunday's Sticky Buns with Toasted Almonds was chosen this week by Jen of Not Microwave Safe. You can find this week's recipe at her blog by clicking on the link or by buying The Sweet Melissa Baking Book. Check out how everyone in our SMS group did by clicking on the link.


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