cinnamon buns are absolutely enormous, and great if you have to make
breakfast for a big crowd. People will be talking about them for
days afterwards, possibly weeks. If you get them just right,
people may actually re-name your boat after them.
For the dough:
1/2 cup wrist-temperature water
2 tsp active dry yeast
1 1/2 cups wrist-temperature milk
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 cup turbinado sugar
1 1/2 tsp sea salt
2 large eggs
5-6 cups (roughly) all-purpose or white whole wheat flour, sifted
The goodies inside:
2 1/4 cups packed brown sugar
2 cups toasted pecan pieces
3 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground allspice
1/2 tsp ground cloves
3/4 cup of butter, cut into small pats
1/2 cup raisins or dried cranberries (optional)
And the icing:
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 cups confectioner's sugar
Mix together the water and yeast in a little bowl to blend, and let it
sit for a few minutes to get foamy. Whisk in the milk, butter,
sugar and salt. Whisk in the eggs one by one. Start adding
flour bit by bit, stirring with a big spoon, until a smooth, sticky
dough forms. Place the dough in a large greased bowl, cover the
bowl with a plate or plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight to rise.
The next morning, mix together the dry ingredients of the
'goodies' ingredients, then butter a large rectangular baking dish.
Turn out the dough onto a generously floured surface and roll the
dough out into a rectangle with about an inch's thickness.
Place the butter pats evenly over the surface of the rectangle,
then sprinkle the dry goodies ingredient mixture evenly over the
butter. Add raisins/ craisins if you're using them.
Preheat your oven to 350, then roll the dough up into a jelly-roll
style log and then cut it into disks using the floss (do this as if
you're trying to tie a granny knot around the log, and just pull it
until you've cut it all the way through. This sounds way more
complicated than it actually is). Place each disk in the greased
baking dish, and let rise until doubled in size. Bake for about
30 minutes, or until golden brown.
While the buns are baking, make the icing. Stir enough milk into
the confectioner's sugar to make a thick syrup. Add vanilla and
beat until smooth. Pour over the buns when they're cool enough to
eat and serve immediately.