Sticky Buns with Toasted Almonds
- SERVINGS: MAKES 10 STICKY BUNS
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 envelope active dry yeast
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- Finely grated zest of 1 orange
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 large egg yolk
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
TOPPING AND FILLING
- 2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
- 1 large egg beaten with 2 tablespoons milk or cream
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup natural almonds
- In a small saucepan, heat 1/2 cup of the milk to 110°. In a bowl, mix the yeast with the warm milk; let stand for 5 minutes.
- In the bowl of a standing electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine the 3 cups flour with the sugar, orange zest and salt. On low speed, mix in the yeast mixture, egg yolk, butter and vanilla. Add the remaining 1/2 cup of milk. Knead the dough at medium speed until it is smooth and silky, about 5 minutes. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Lightly grease a 9-by-13-inch baking dish and line the bottom with parchment or wax paper. In a medium saucepan, combine the butter with the light brown sugar, maple syrup and 1/2 tablespoon of the cinnamon. Bring to a boil, stirring, until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved. Pour the syrup into the baking pan.
- On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a 12-by-16-inch rectangle, with a long edge facing you. Lightly brush the egg wash over the dough. Combine the granulated sugar with the remaining 1 tablespoon cinnamon and sprinkle it heavily all over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border at the bottom. Starting at the top edge, roll up the dough jelly-roll style, and pinch the bottom edge to seal.
- Cut the roll into 10 even slices and arrange the slices, cut side down, in the syrup. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until the dough has doubled in bulk and is soft to the touch, 1 to 2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Put the almonds on a baking sheet and roast until fragrant and golden, 8 to 9 minutes. Let cool, then coarsely chop the nuts.
- Bake the sticky buns for 40 minutes, or until the dough is a deep golden brown and the syrup is bubbling. Let cool slightly, then use tongs to transfer the sticky buns, 1 at a time, to a serving dish. Spoon any remaining syrup over the buns and sprinkle with the almonds. Serve warm.
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