Recipe courtesy of
Total:
5 hr 10 min
Active:
50 min
Yield:
12 sticky buns
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients

White Trash Dough: 
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (melted butter would be great, also)
  • 6 to 8 cups unbleached white flour, plus more for flouring
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • Vegetable oil, for oiling the pan
Sticky Goo:
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups pecan halves
Topping:
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Directions

For the white trash dough: Mix together the sugar, yeast and 1 cup very warm water (not hot) in a measuring cup and proof to test the liveliness of the yeast. When this bubbles and looks healthy, hopefully in 5 minutes or so, transfer to a mixing bowl and add 1 1/2 cups warm water, the milk, honey, olive oil and 5 cups of the flour. Mix this by hand or in a mixer until it just barely comes together, and then cover and let rest for 20 minutes or so. This is referred to as an 'autolyze' or resting period, and it allows the flour to absorb the moisture without the salt hampering the process. After the time is up, stir in the salt and an additional 1 cup flour. The dough should be coming together now and may need the addition of up to 2 more cups of flour. It should be a medium-soft dough that stands up to kneading but is not too firm. Knead until silky in texture and thin bands form when pulling it apart. Let rise, covered, until doubled in bulk. (This recipe makes double the amount of dough needed for the sticky buns. After rising and dividing the dough, reserve the other half of the dough for another use.) 

In the meantime, oil a 9- by 13-inch baking pan and line with parchment paper. Now is a good time to make the sticky goo, as we so affectionately call it. 

For the sticky goo: In a 3-quart saucepan, melt the butter and pour off about 2 tablespoons into a glass bowl and set aside. To the butter in the pan, add the brown sugar, honey, granulated sugar, heavy cream and salt. Whisk together over medium heat until smooth. Pour into the prepared baking pan and sprinkle with the pecan halves. 

Once the dough is ready, turn it out onto a floured board but do not knead! Just spread it out in all its flattened glory. Divide the dough in half. (Knead together one half and put it into a loaf pan for sandwich bread or something; you won't need it for this.) Take the other half and roll it out on your floured board to a rectangle about 12 inches by 20 inches. Brush with the reserved melted butter. 

For the topping: Sprinkle on the brown sugar and cinnamon and roll it longways into a tidy log. Cut the log into 12 equal pieces and place the pieces cut side up in the pan over the pecan mixture of love. Let rise, covered, in a warm place, about 1 hour. 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. 

Bake until an instant-read thermometer placed in the buns registers 200 degrees F, about 45 minutes. Once you pull the buns from the oven--and this is important--let them sit in the baking pan for 5 minutes or so to cool before dumping them out upside down onto a tray. This will allow the caramel to thicken slightly and it won't all just run off. You will be greatly rewarded for your patience!

Cook's Note

The additional dough may be formed into a loaf. Let the loaf rise again, slash before baking and bake at 350 degrees F for about 1 hour or until the internal temperature registers 195 degrees F.

This recipe was provided by a chef, restaurant or culinary professional. It has not been tested for home use.

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