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Sticky Buns

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 7 hr 45 min
  • Prep: 30 min
  • Inactive: 6 hr 40 min
  • Cook: 35 min
  • Yield: 12 rolls
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Softened butter, for bowls and baking pan

For the glaze:

1 cup light muscavado sugar

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/3 cup honey

1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1 orange, zest finely grated

1 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted

For the dough:

1 package yeast

1 cup warm milk (about 110 degrees F)

1/4 cup granulated sugar, plus a pinch

1/4 cup unsalted butter

1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 large egg yolk

2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup sugar

3/4 teaspoon salt

For the filling:

8 tablespoons softened butter

1/3 granulated sugar

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon


  1. Butter a 9 by 13-inch baking pan.
  2. Combine the sugar, butter, honey, orange juice and zest in a saucepan and bring to a boil; boil until slightly thickened. Pour the glaze into the prepared pan, and scatter the nuts over the top.
  3. Sprinkle yeast over warm milk with a pinch of the granulated sugar; set aside until foamy, about 5 minutes. Melt 1/4 cup butter and whisk into yeast with vanilla and egg yolk.
  4. Whisk the flour, 1/4 cup sugar, and salt in a large bowl. Stir in yeast mixture to make a sticky dough. Knead the dough on a floured work surface until soft and elastic, 6 to 8 minutes. (Dough will be soft and elastic, but not terribly sticky.) Shape into a ball, brush with a little melted butter and put into a large bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
  5. Knead the dough and reform into a ball. Return to the bowl, cover with buttered plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours.
  6. Roll the dough into 10 by 18-inch rectangle with a long edge facing you. Spread soft butter over the surface. Whisk 1/3 cup sugar and cinnamon together, scatter over butter. Roll into a long tight cylinder; pinch long edge to seal. Cut into 1 1/2-inch rolls with string or dental floss. Evenly space the rolls in the pan. Cover and let rise, at room temperature, until doubled, about 1 1/2 hours.
  7. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  8. Bake until golden, 30 to 35 minutes. Rest at room temperature 10 minutes, unmold, and serve warm.