Dépanneur, a small European convenience store around the corner from us, turned me into a sticky bun maniac. Early every Saturday, I’d get a call that the shipment had come in, and raced over to ensure that no one, heaven forbid, would steal my weekly rationing of two sticky buns (maybe one or two more on Sunday… ) As I’ve taken means to decrease my sugar intake, regular consumption of sticky buns are out, but for the sake of a rare treat, I went about making a batch, using Ina Garten’s recipe, that trump even those from Dépanneur. Although the recipe urges to “cool completely,” some rules are best broken. Recipe below the pictures-enjoy!!
- 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
- 1/2 cup pecans, chopped in very large pieces
- 1 package (17.3 ounces/2 sheets) frozen puff pastry, defrosted
For the filling:
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 2/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
- 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 cup raisins (I chose to forgo these guys)
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place a 12-cup standard muffin tin on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the 12 tablespoons butter and 1/3 cup brown sugar. Place 1 rounded tablespoon of the mixture in each of the 12 muffin cups and cover entire surface of the 12 sections. Distribute the pecans evenly among the 12 muffin cups on top of the butter and sugar mixture.
2. Lightly flour a wooden board or stone surface. Unfold one sheet of puff pastry with the folds going left to right. Brush the whole sheet with half of the melted butter. Leaving a 1-inch border on the puff pastry, sprinkle each sheet with 1/3 cup of the brown sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons of the cinnamon, and 1/2 cup of the raisins. Starting with the end nearest you, roll the pastry up snugly like a jelly roll around the filling, finishing the roll with the seam side down. Trim the ends of the roll about 1/2 inch and discard. Slice the roll in six equal pieces, about 1 1/2 inches wide. Place each piece, spiral side up, in six of the muffin cups. Repeat with the second sheet of puff pastry to make 12 sticky buns.
2. Bake for 30 minutes*, until the sticky buns are golden to dark brown on top and firm to the touch. Allow to cool for five minutes only, invert the buns onto the parchment paper (ease the filling and pecans out onto the buns with a spoon), and cool completely.
*While ovens (and bakers) vary, I ruined my first batch by baking 30 minutes and waiting for the visible tops to be golden-dark brown. Instead, 22 minutes, when the tops developed slightly golden edges, proved perfect.