Homemade Sweet Buns

4

Makes

10 servings

Homemade Sweet Buns

Photo: iStockphoto

This recipe makes ten sweet buns, but they freeze well (if you can convince your family not to eat them all as they come out of the oven).


Ingredients

  • 1 cup lukewarm water
  • 2 tsp granulated sugar
  • 4 1/2 tsp active dry yeast , (2 envelopes)

Dough

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cups milk , at room temperature
  • 10 cups all-purpose flour , (approximately!)

Instructions

  • Pour the water into a small bowl, then stir in the 2 tsp. (10 mL) of sugar, mixing until it’s dissolved. Sprinkle in the yeast granules, stir, then let the mixture sit in a warm place (not over direct heat, though) while you proceed with the next step. The yeast will begin to activate and rise up in the bowl in about 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, in very large mixing bowl, beat together the butter, the 1/2 cup (125 mL) of sugar and salt until creamy. Beat in the eggs, then the milk and 3 cups (750 mL) of the flour. Continue to add flour, a cupful at a time at first, until the dough becomes difficult to stir in the bowl. Now turn the dough out onto a floured surface, and add the flour 1/2 cup (125 mL) at a time, kneading it by hand until it is no longer very sticky. This should be a fairly soft dough, so don’t add too much flour. You’ll know it’s time to stop when the dough feels damp and still just a bit sticky.
  • Place the kneaded dough into a large buttered bowl, cover with a cloth (to prevent it from drying out) and put the dough into a warm spot to rise. You can use a slightly warmed (and turned off) oven to rise dough. A bowl of very hot water placed in the bottom of the oven will help keep the dough moist. Let rise 1 to 2 hours (or until doubled in volume). Rising time will depend on the temperature of the ingredients and the temperature of the air around the dough.
  • When the dough has risen, punch it down (ram your fist into it to deflate & a great kid’s job!) and form it into any (or all) of the following shapes. You can divide the dough into 4 parts and make some of each. Instructions below are for using 1/4 of the dough.
  • Dinner rolls: Form dough into 2 in. (5 cm) diameter balls, rolling each one smooth. Place in well-greased muffin cups, or beside one another in a 8 or 9 in. (20 or 23 cm) square baking pan (leaving room for expansion). Brush with melted butter, then cover with cloth and let rise until double (about half an hour). Bake at 375°F (190°C) for 18 to 20 minutes. Makes about 12.
  • Cloverleaf rolls: Form dough into 1 in. (2 cm) balls and place 3 of them into each cup of a greased muffin pan. Brush with melted butter, then cover with cloth and let rise until double (about half an hour). Bake at 375°F (190°C) for 18 to 20 minutes. Makes about 12.
  • Crescents: On a well-floured surface, roll dough out into flat round—about 18 in. (45 cm) across. Brush surface with plenty of melted butter and using a pizza cutter, cut dough into 12 wedges. Starting at the wide end, roll up each wedge very firmly and place, point-side-down, onto a greased cookie sheet (or two). Bend into a crescent shape and brush lightly with butter. Cover with cloth and let rise until double (about half an hour). Bake at 375°F (190°C) for 18 to 20 minutes. Makes about 12.
  • Cinnamon buns: On a well-floured surface, roll dough out into a 12 in. (25 cm) square. Brush with 2 tbsp. (30 cm) melted butter, then sprinkle with 1/4 cup (50 mL) brown sugar mixed with 1/2 tsp. (2 cm) cinnamon. Starting from the side closest to you, roll up very tightly to form a long cylinder. Cut crosswise into 8 or 9 pieces, and place these, cut-side-down in a well greased 8 or 9 in. (20 or 23 cm) baking pan. Cover with a cloth, and let rise until double (about half an hour). Bake at 375°F (190°C) for 20 to 25 minutes. Makes 8 or 9 buns.