Since I tried my hands on making my own bread; I have gotten to be really addicted to trying out new recipes. The smell of the yeast and flour being mixed together into sticky dough and then the aroma of it baking in the oven is fantastic. I promised Red a while back that I would try to make him homemade sticky buns for breakfast, so I thought that this recipe would be a great one to try on the weekends.
And I was right! Oh my goodness… the rolls were so soft and buttery, covered in goey caramel and pecan goodness. Definitely not for the faint of heart. I actually made half of the brioche dough on a Friday night, let it sit for a couple of hours and left it in the refrigerator overnight. Half of the brioche dough makes doubled the recipe for the sticky pecan caramel rolls. On Saturday morning, I only had to let it rise for another hour or so, and we could enjoy it for breakfast without having to wait too long. Definitely plan for at least 3 hours and 45 minutes before you plan to serve it because it needs to sit and then bake for an hour in the oven.
Eventhough it does take a little time to put together, don’t let that intimidate you. This recipe is definitely a MUST try. I can assure you that it is worth the time and the wait. This will be an impressive dish to serve as breakfast or brunch for company or family gathering. I asked Red how he liked these rolls, and his answer was, “Excellent! One of the best caramel rolls I have ever had!” I think this was a keeper for us. I hope you enjoy this as much as we did. Happy eating.
Adapted from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day
(This recipe makes 4 1-lb loaves, can be doubled or halved)
1-1/2 cups lukewarm water
1-1/2 tbsp granulated yeast (~ 1-1/2 packets)
1-1/2 tbsp salt
8 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup honey
1-1/2 cups unsalted butter, melted, plus butter for greasing pan
7-1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
Egg Wash (1 egg beaten w/ 1 tbsp of water)
Mix the yeast, salt, eggs, honey and melted butter with the water in a 5-quart bowl.
Mix the flour using a heavy-duty stand mixer with a dough hook. The dough will be loose but will be firm when chilled; don’t try to work with it before chilling.
Cover and allow to rest a room temperature until dough rises and collapses (or flattens on top), approx 2 hrs.
The Caramel Topping
6 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1-1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup brown sugar
30 pecan halves
4 tbsp salter butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup chopped and toasted pecans
Pinch of ground black pepper
Sticky Pecan Caramel Rolls Ingredients
Cream together the butter, salt and brown sugar. Spread ovenly over the bottom of a 9-inch cake pan using a spatula. Scatter the pecans over the butter-sugar mixture and set aside.
Dust the surface of the refrigerated dough with flour and cut off a 1 to 1-1/2 lb dough piece (this is about a quarter of what the recipe for the brioche dough above makes). Dust the piece with more flour and quickly shape it into a ball by stretching the surface of the dough around the bottom on all four sides, rotating the ball a quarter-turn as you go.
With a rolling pin, roll out the dough to a 1/8-inch thick rectangle. As you roll out the dough, use enough flour to prevent in from sicking to work surface but not so much as to make the dough dry.
Cream together the butter, sugar and spice for the filling. Spread evenly over the rolled-out dough and sprinkle with the chopped nuts. Starting with the long side, roll the dough into a log. If the dough is too soft to cut, let it chill for 20 min to firm up.
With very sharp serrated knife, cut the log into 8-equal pieces and arrange over the pecans in the pan, with the “swirled” edge facing upward. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and allow to rest and rise 1 hr (40 mins if you are using fresh, unrefrigerated dough).
Twenty minutes before baking time, preheat oven to 350 deg F. If you are not using a stone in the oven, 5 min is adequate.
Bake about 40 min or until golden brown and well set in the center. While still hot, run a knife around the inside of the pan to relase the caramel rolls, and invert immediately onto a serving dish. If you let them set too long, they will stick to the pan and be difficult to turn out.
Yield: 8 large caramel rolls