Overnight company is coming this weekend, so I thought I would make some homemade buns for breakfast. Our friends are very conscious of fat content, so I altered this recipe accordingly. Instead of making a 9x12 pan of rolls, I opted to make two 8" round pans. One pan will be sticky buns, and one pan will be a different filling with no sticky nuts on the bottom. Both are lower-fat versions of the original. I also added some whole-wheat flour to make it more nutritious. This is an easy recipe, especially if you have a KitchenAid mixer with the dough hook or a bread machine to mix the dough and a food processor for the filling. And if you've never tried homemade bread, don't be afraid of it. That's the one thing that you can't overbeat. The more you beat/mix it, the better it gets.
Sweet Roll Dough
INGREDIENTS: 1 cup low-fat milk
1/4 cup Smart Balance buttery spread
1/4 cup water
1/2 package vanilla pudding mix (1/4 cup)
3-1/2 cups bread flour, divided use
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 package Rapid Rise (very active) yeast (2-1/4 tsp.)
DIRECTIONS: In small pot, heat milk with buttery spread, till spread starts to melt (120 degrees F). Remove from heat and add 1/4 cup water. If you don't have a yeast thermometer, stir the milk and put a few drops on your wrist. If it is comfortably warm, it's ok. (If it's too hot, it will kill the yeast, if it's too cool, the yeast won't rise.) In large bowl, mix all dry ingredients, except for 1 cup of flour. Add the liquids and beat till smooth, then for at least two more minutes (I do it for 3 minutes). Add the reserved flour in 1/4 cup increments, beating till smooth after each addition and for 1-2 minutes after. When all flour is incorporated into the dough, and the dough has cleaned the bottom and sides of the bowl, beat or knead for 2-4 more minutes if by machine, 8-10 minutes by hand. Place dough in a large bowl that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray (or greased with oil). Spray top of dough or turn dough in greased bowl so that oil is on top. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place (80-90 degrees) till doubled in size, about 1-1/2 hours. (I boiled a quart of water and put it into a 9x12 pan and placed the pan at the bottom of a turned-off oven. I put the bowl of dough above it and closed the door.) While dough is rising, making fillings and prepare baking pans:
Honey Sticky Buns: In small covered microwaveable bowl or cup, heat 2 Tbsp. butter or Smart Balance for about 30 seconds, or till almost melted. Add 1-1/2 tsp. water and 1/2 tsp. orange flavoring and pour into an 8" cake pan. Add 2 Tbsp. sugar and 1/4 cup honey and stir till combined. Set aside. Filling for honey sticky buns: In small bowl, whisk till combined 1/3 cup sugar, 1-1/2 tsp. grated orange zest and 1 tsp. cinnamon. Set aside.
Spiral Sweet Rolls: In work bowl of food processor, mix 1/3 cup orange marmalade, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon and 1/2 cup walnuts. Pulse till mixture is consistency of a coarse paste. Set aside.
When dough has risen, punch it down, knead it for a minute on a lightly floured surface to get the bubbles out, then cut the dough in half. Roll each half out to a 12" x 12" square on a floured surface. For sticky buns, spray dough with non-stick cooking spray, then sprinkle filling over surface. For spiral sweet rolls, roll out to 12 x 12 square and spread filling over surface. Roll each square up, then cut each in half, then in half again. Cut each quarter into 3 equal pieces, making 12 rolls for each pan. Place sticky bun dough into prepared pan. Place Spiral Sweet Roll dough into pan that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Spray tops of rolls with spray, cover with plastic wrap and let rise again till ready to bake. When you can put two fingers into dough and the indentation remains, the dough is ready to bake. It should take about 1/2 hour - 45 minutes for the second rising, depending on the temperature of your kitchen and other variables. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 25-30 minutes, or until rolls are nicely browned. Let cool in pans for a few minutes, then turn out on cooling racks to continue cooling. Yield: 24 buns. (These freeze beautifully.)