Sunday, April 27, 2008

Banana Sticky Buns

Banana Sticky Buns
(Adapted from Jennifer, The Domestic Goddess)

1 package active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F) + 1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
2 tablespoons unsalted butter – room temperature
2 large eggs
¼ cup buttermilk powder
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
3 1/2 cups all-purpose or bread flour

3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
¼ cup unsalted butter, melted

Sticky Bottom:
6 tablespoons unsalted butter + 1 teaspoon for pan
¾ cup packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 cup sliced, toasted almonds

(Note: Jennifer uses a vanilla sugar glaze (follow the link above) on the sticky buns as well, but since I had extra Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting from making Joy's cupcakes, I just used some of that - SOOOO good!)


1. In a large bowl mash the bananas with the butter to form a very soft, ever-so-slightly liquid paste. Combine the yeast with the warm water and sugar. Let sit til foamy, 5 minutes. Add the eggs, buttermilk powder, brown sugar, salt and flour and stir with a wooden spoon until a rough mass forms.

2. Scrape it all together with a bench scraper and transfer to a lightly floured work surface. Knead until it is smooth and elastic, adding more flour if necessary, about 5 minutes. The dough should be soft but not sticky.

3. Form the dough into a ball and transfer to a lightly oiled bowl and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Allow to rise in a warm, draft-free spot (on top of the fridge works really well) until it doubles in size – about 1 ½ hours. (I got started on this in the evening, so I ended up putting the dough in the refrigerator overnight at this point).

4. Make the filling: in a small bowl, combine the sugars and cinnamon. Set aside.

5. Punch down the risen dough and turn out onto a lightly floured work surface. Roll out to a 14- by 9-inch rectangle. Brush the surface of the dough with the melted butter, then sprinkle evenly with the cinnamon-sugar combination and press it into the dough lightly. Beginning at the long side, roll jellyroll style. Pinch to seal seam and set aside, covered in a warm spot while you make the sticky bottom.

6. Lightly butter the bottom of a 9 by 13-inch baking pan. In a small saucepan, combine the butter and brown sugar and honey, cook, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Stir in the cream and keep stirring until smooth and incorporated. Pour the mixture into the pan. Sprinkle with the almonds. Cut the buns into 12 pieces, about 1 ½ inches wide and arrange, cut side up in the pan with the sugar-butter-almond mixture. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place for 30 to 45 minutes (or over night in the fridge) or until doubled in volume.

7. Bake in a preheated, 350 F oven for 25 – 35 minutes, or until caramel is bubbling and tops are slightly browned. Meanwhile, make glaze or frosting (go check out Jennifer's and Joy's blogs for your choice - the sticky buns are really good without any glaze too). When the rolls come out of the oven, allow them to cool slightly and then drizzle with the glaze while they are still warm. Pull apart and serve warm.

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