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Sunday morning simplicity…

Wouldn’t it be nice to stay in your warm bed for a while on Sunday morning?  Your body craves something sweet, but the blankets are much too comfortable to disturb – you really don’t feel like getting dressed, but getting up and padding to the coffee maker is definitely an option.  Who needs Starbuck$ anyway? (sorry Tina! LOL)  If you have a grinder and some coffee from The Coffee Fool (They have the BEST.COFFEE.EVER.  Just try ONE bag – I promise you, you’ll be hopelessly hooked), you are set…but are you?  You need something to eat with that wonderful cuppa java.  Hmmm…rummage around your cabinets…some stale italian bread…ugh no….cereal? ick…a moldy English Muffin? ummm don’t think so…a box of puff pastry in the freezer? check.  Brown sugar? check.  Nuts? check (you can take that any way you desire) butter? check.  Hmmm…I think we have the makings for some awesomely good Sticky Buns.  I promise you.  très facile. molto facile. muy fácil. Meget let.     아주 쉬운.  I don’t care what language you speak…any way you say it, these are SIMPLE.  And…they’re good.  yummy good. (before I get off on another language tangent, I think I’ll stop)

You need a box of puff pastry.  Please do NOT get phyllo doughIt doesn’t work.  When I first saw these made on the “Barefoot Contessa”, I SWORE I heard her say “you can use puff pastry, or phyllo dough”.  I can’t think of any way I may have misheard “phyllo dough” – maybe she said “for the show” or “don’t you know”?   Perhaps she had a wee bit too much wine (I kid, I kid!), or maybe I just needed to clean my ears out.  I bought phyllo dough.  When I took it out, I thought to myself “gee, this isn’t going to work, this is MUCH too flaky – and maybe I better just fold it up and stick it back in the freezer”  but I didn’t.  That was my mistake. I didn’t trust what I know…I trusted what I thought I heard Ina say, because I LOVE her as a chef, and SHE SAID IT SO IT MUST BE TRUE  – (didn’t some type of parental unit ever tell you “don’t believe everything you hear” as a kid?)  So, I made them, and laughed when I got these semi-gooey topped, dry, flaky, things-that-belong-in-the-trash.  Most cooks will not share their errors with you, because they don’t want you to think they can make any.  Do you ever see Bobby Flay or Emeril saying “Man..you should see how I goofed THIS recipe up the first time I made it!” No, you don’t.  And I don’t think that Gordon Ramsey would EVER admit he was human :-P.  I have no such compunctions, because I look at all mistakes as learning experiences.  I let my kids know I am human, I let you guys know I am human, and that just makes it all the better.  Maybe if we all admitted we were human, we’d be a tad more tolerant of each other…Heads of state saying “Oh, you know, I really overreacted when I said we’d nuke the hell out of you – sorry!” instead of sending 20 diplomats to try and avoid a nuclear meltdown…

The second time I made these, I used puff pastry and they were yummy.  They got the hubby seal of approval!  I changed the recipe up a bit (sorry Ina, but I think you’d understand, being a chef and all) to make it a tad easier than it already was…And guess what? You get to use your estimating expertise!!! Don’t be intimidated, I know you can do it!

I am going to give you the recipe with choc chips and coconut, because I LOVE the combo with the pecans and cinnamon.  If you are one of those rare people that can’t handle chocolate on Sunday morning, feel free to omit it.  In fact, I want you to make the sticky bun of your dreams with this recipe, and post your successes here.  We can all learn from each other! 🙂  Don’t feel obligated to use exact amounts either – if you LOVE chips – add more!  If you don’t like coconut – don’t use it…you get the picture 🙂

Here is what you need:  (printable recipe here )

Choconut Sticky Buns (makes 12, but I usually halve the recipe)

  • 12 tablespoons of butter at room temperature (take it out right before you go to bed – unless you sleep for 12 hours, then that’s not such a good idea, but – it has to be soft) reserve 2 tbs of this for the filling
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed (this means pack it down gently into the measuring cup)
  • 3/4 cup of chopped pecans
  • 1 package of puff pastry sheets. (not phyllo, not the cups…you want sheets)

for the filling:

  • 2 tbs of butter (Do a guesstimation – and leave about 2 tbs of butter/sugar mixture in the bowlsee above)
  • 1 cup of light brown sugar, lightly packed
  • 3-4 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup chopped pecans, 1/2 cup choc chips, 1/2 cup coconut (more or less)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Get out a 12 cup muffin tin

In a glass bowl (“why a glass bowl?” you say…I reply “because you are going to melt the leftovers”) Mix the butter and brown sugar with a tablespoon – you know, the kind you eat soup with.

Now, take a slightly rounded tea spoon(I use a teaspoon from my silverware drawer, not the measuring kind for this step) and plop some into each muffin cup.  Leave about 2 tbs in the bowl.  If you used too much, take a little out…if you used too little, add some more –  Then sprinkle the 3/4 cup of  pecans on top of the butter/sugar mixture.  Again, if you want less, don’t use it all… (you should have LESS than what is pictured – I made this twice, and this is from the first time – waaaay too much buttah, sorry Ina- I adjusted the recipe accordingly, so the amount I have in the recipe is correct)

Now, put out a piece of wax paper on the counter, and gently unroll 1 roll of puff pastry with the folds going from LEFT to RIGHT (that’s vertically).  Melt that leftover butter/sugar mixture you have sitting in the glass bowl, and brush the entire sheet of puff pastry with it.  (You should have some left for the other sheet). Now, making sure you leave a 1 inch border (“Why is that?” you ask, and I reply “Because the filling will move when you roll it up, and the borders allow for that movement”) sprinkle the sheet with 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 1/2 cup of pecans, 1/4 cup of coconut, and 1/4 cup of chips.  Feel free to eliminate some of those ingredients, or add others, depending on your whims.  I would just not recommend dill pickles.  Sprinkle the surface with cinnamon.  (I don’t measure, I just shake it evenly over the surface.)  Now, fold over the one edge closest to you and start rolling.  It should look something like this:

I have not added the chips or coconut yet.

 Roll up the puff pastry jelly-roll style, trying to keep it tight as you do.  Trim 1/2 inch off of each end, then divide the roll into six even pieces. (I find the easiest way to do this, is to make a mark in the center, then divide each half into three equal pieces MUCH easier)Now, place each piece spiral side UP into a muffin cup, and press it down slightly like so: Repeat this whole process again for the second sheet of puff pastry.   Bake for 30 minutes, or until golden brown on top and firm to the touch. Wait only a minute or two, and dump the tin out onto either a piece of wax paper or parchment paper (MUCH easier to clean up, trust me.)  and VOILA! you have awesomely good, ooey gooey sticky buns 🙂

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2 Responses

  1. omgg. can’t wait to try this. mouth is already watering!!!!!
    ps- you should try to make this blog famous or something. you have suchhhh a good/funny voice

  2. those look GOOOOD i ove that they have pecans.

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