Q: We sure would appreciate the recipe for the “pecan sticky buns” from our favorite restaurant, Canoe. Thanks! — Muffy Cooper, Gainesville
A: Canoe’s executive chef Matt Basford sent the recipe for these beautiful flaky buns. If you’ll follow the directions precisely, you’ll achieve the same many-layered result as in the photo here. This is a version of a “laminated” dough, where a yeast dough is wrapped around a layer of butter and then the dough is folded and rolled and folded and rolled to create dozens of thin layers that puff beautifully.
This dough contains a great deal of butter, so be sure to bake the rolls on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any butter that leaches out as they bake.
The pastry chefs at Canoe use fresh yeast, not an ingredient readily available for home cooks. We’ve converted the recipe for the use of dry yeast.
Canoe’s Sticky Buns with Georgia Pecans
For the buns:
1 cup whole milk
3 teaspoons dry yeast
4 cups bread flour, plus extra for flouring work surface
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons salt
24 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, plus 1 tablespoon, cut into cubes
For the cinnamon sugar:
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon
For the glaze:
1/2 cup light brown sugar
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 tablespoon water
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine the milk, egg and yeast. Add flour, sugar and salt. Mix on low speed until everything is combined, then increase speed to medium. Gradually add 1 tablespoon butter cut into cubes. Continue to mix for 7 to 10 minutes or until dough is elastic. It should stretch, but not tear. Move dough to a lightly greased bowl and allow to rise in the refrigerator at least two hours or up to overnight.
To make the butter laminate: Make a double layer of plastic wrap, approximately 12-by-18 inches. Slice remaining 24 tablespoons butter into 1/4-inch thick slices and arrange on plastic in a single layer, close but not touching. Cover butter with plastic and use a rolling pin to make an even sheet with no spaces between the butter. Refrigerate butter laminate at least four hours, or overnight.
When ready to make buns, remove dough from refrigerator. Flour working surface and rolling pin and roll out to a 1/2-inch thick rectangle a little larger than the butter laminate. Place butter laminate on top of rolled out dough and fold the dough into thirds, like a letter. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Remove dough from refrigerator and roll out into a rectangle. Butter must be warm enough to roll out but not so warm that it melts. Fold the sides of the rectangle over to meet in the middle and then fold the dough in half again. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 minutes.
Remove dough from refrigerator and roll out into a rectangle. Fold into thirds like a letter, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 1 hour.
Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
Make cinnamon sugar: In a small bowl, stir together sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
Roll dough into a 1/8-inch thick rectangle and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Starting with a long edge, tightly roll dough into a log. Cut into 3/4-inch thick slices and arrange on prepared baking sheet. Leave space between slices so they can expand. Rolls can be refrigerated at this point, or you may proceed with the recipe.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Allow buns to rise until they have expanded by about 50 percent. Bake 25 minutes. Halfway through baking, remove baking sheet from oven and tap the center of each bun to keep the buns flat while baking. Return baking sheet to oven, rotating from original position. Bake until golden brown.
While buns are baking, make glaze. In a medium saucepan, combine brown sugar, butter, corn syrup, water and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and keep warm.
Remove buns for oven and allow to cool. Brush with glaze and sprinkle with pecans. Allow to sit at least 5 minutes before serving. Makes: 12
Per sticky bun: 542 calories (percent of calories from fat, 47), 7 grams protein, 66 grams carbohydrates, 1 gram fiber, 29 grams fat (17 grams saturated), 93 milligrams cholesterol, 407 milligrams sodium.
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