Sunday Morning Sticky Rolls on Saturday Evening

After a week of (too) fine dining, it was time to head home.  So we opened our wallets bright and early only to find, well… that it was time to eat at McDonalds.  And I’m glad we did.  Have you ever had good ol’ Mickey D’s Cinnamon Melt? Yum!  Unfortunately, I only ordered one, and after I ate that one I found myself wanting another one.  And 4 or 5 or 10 more…yeah, 10 probably would have been sufficient.  Well anyway, I didn’t have 10 more, so I decided to make my own.

Normally, I would have found a recipe from the internet with a picture included so I can see the finished result before I even start, but I decided to change things up this time. I’m an avid Jodi Picoult reader, and her latest book, Handle with Care, (which is very good.  Read it!)  has pastry recipes dispersed through the book.  One of the recipes is called “Sunday Morning Sticky Rolls.”  I thought to myself, “What could be more perfect than a recipe for my favorite breakfast food from my favorite author?”  As it turns out, NOTHING!  It was a challenge, let me tell you.  My very first time making cinnamon rolls!  I was kind of worried about making them, but with the help of Joy the Baker’s Cinnamon Rolls (which  I will be making soon), I was able to see a step-by-step process.
I didn’t alter the recipe much at all, but if you would like the original recipe, I listed the link below.  They turned out perfectly and this time I could have as many as I wanted.  They were sticky and gooey and cinnamon-y and soft and fluffy and… well I’m off to have another! 

Sunday Morning Sticky Rolls
Based on:  Jodi Picoult, Handle with Care.
http://www.jodipicoult.com/handle-with-care.html

Dough:

  •     3 ¾ cup flour  (may not use it all)
  •     1/3 cup sugar
  •     1 t salt
  •     2 packages active dry yeast, or 4 ½ T
  •     1 c heated milk
  •     1/3 c butter, softened
  •     1 egg

Caramel:

  •     ¾ c dark brown sugar
  •     ½ c unsalted butter
  •     ¼ c light corn syrup
  •     ¾ c pecan halves
  •     2 T butter, softened

Filling:

  •    ½ c pecans, chopped (I used walnuts)
  •     2 T sugar
  •     2 T brown sugar
  •     1 t cinnamon

Icing (optional):

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • ¼ cup milk

Dough: 

First, heat the milk to 110 degrees and then add 1 tsp. salt and 2 packages active dry yeast and mix.  Wait 5-10 minutes for the mixture to get frothy. 

Next, put 2 c. flour, 1/3 c. sugar, egg, 1/3 c. butter, and yeast mixture in a mixer and mix on low speed. Scrape down the sides as you go, and mix until the dough pulls all of the excess dough off of the sides of the mixing bowl, adding more flour if needed.  I ended up using 3 c. of flour.

This is the point when the dough is ready to be kneaded.  Either take the dough out and knead for five minutes (or until elastic) on a lightly floured surface or knead in your mixer with the dough hook attachment. Put the dough in a greased bowl and turn over once, so greased side faces up.

Cover with a towel and wait about 1 ½ hours while dough rises.

It’s ready if you poke it and the mork of your finger is left.

Caramel:

Stirring constantly, heat ¾ cup brown sugar and ½ cup butter to boiling. Remove from heat and add corn syrup.

Pour the mixture into a 13x9x2 inch ungreased pan. Sprinkle with pecan halves.

For the filling, mix together the chopped pecans, the 2 T of sugar and 2 T of brown sugar, and the cinnamon, set aside.

Take your fist and punch down the dough. Then, on a lightly floured surface, flatten it into a rectangle, about 15×10 inches.

Spread with 2 T of butter and then dust evenly with the chopped pecan mixture.

Beginning at the 10 inch side of the rectangle, roll the dough up tightly and pinch the edge to seal. Roll it, stretch it, mold it until it is even, a cylinder.

Cut the roll into eight quarter-inch slices, (I had extra dough, and, as you can probably tell by the defect roll, I tried to make it into another cinnamon roll) and place in pan, not quite touching.

Wrap pan tightly with aluminum foil and refrigerate at least 12 hours. I only refrigerated 6 hours and they turned out fine.

 Heat oven to 350 degrees and bake 35 minutes, or until golden brown. Immediately invert on a platter and serve warm.

**Optional** drizzle with icing.

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