COOK

Bun Appétit

June 22, 2017 | PHOTOGRAPHY BY SCOTT HUNTER

Delectable, doughy make-ahead cinnamon buns make the perfect weekend breakfast.

However delightful it may be to purchase cinnamon buns from your favourite local bakery, they’re even more delightful to prepare at home. The beauty of baking cinnamon buns comes from their ability to satisfy all five senses throughout the baking process. Kneading and feeling the transformation of rough dough into silky, smooth dough captures the sense of touch. The smell of yeast and cinnamon fill the house as the buns bake, whetting everyone’s appetites. The glistening, golden bubbling of the sugars draw eyes to the oven, and oohs and aahs of appreciative eaters are enough to please the ears. With the option to refrigerate the buns overnight, there’s no excuse not to give these a try, especially on a rainy morning at the cottage.

DOUGH

  • 1/4 cup warm water
  • 3 tsp active dried yeast
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk at room temperature
  • 2 eggs at room temperature
  • 3 cups flour, approx.
  • 1/2 tsp salt

FILLING

  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup pecan pieces
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch ground cloves
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted

ICING

  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • 2 Tbsp milk

DIRECTIONS

  • In large bowl, mix together warm water, yeast and 1 tsp of the sugar, let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. Whisk in milk, eggs and remaining sugar. Stir in 2-1/2 cups of the flour and the salt until dough is rough and sticky. Turn out onto floured surface and knead in as much of the remaining flour as needed to make a smooth, pliable dough. Transfer dough to buttered bowl, turning to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in warm place for 1 to 1-1/2 hours, until it has doubled in size.
  • Meanwhile, make the filling: Stir together the brown sugar, sugar, pecans, cinnamon and cloves. Set filling aside.
  • Punch the dough down and turn out onto floured surface, gently roll and stretch into a 10-by-20-inch rectangle. Brush with the melted butter. Sprinkle with the filling, leaving a one-inch border at one short end. Press the filling gently into the dough to stick. Starting at the end opposite the one-inch border, roll into a tight cylinder. Pinch the edge to seal. With a sharp knife, trim ends off and cut cylinder crosswise into eight equal slices. Place each slice, evenly spaced, into a buttered nine-by-13-inch baking pan. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for two hours. (Or, let rolls rise in refrigerator overnight. Allow to sit at room temperature for 15 minutes before baking.)
  • Bake in a 375°F oven until a toothpick inserted into centre of buns comes out clean, about 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, make the icing: Whisk together icing sugar and milk.
  • Let buns cool in the pan on a cooling rack for five minutes. Drizzle with icing. Enjoy immediately.

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