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Think of a cinnamon bun. Now replace that cinnamon flavor with almond. That's the secret of these soft, moist buns.
1 cup (8 ounces) lukewarm water
2 large eggs
3 1/2 cups (14 3/4 ounces) Mellow Pastry Blend or King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1/4 cup (1 1/4 ounces) soy flour (optional)
1/4 cup (1 1/4 ounces) Baker's Special Dry Milk or nonfat dry milk
2 teaspoons instant yeast
3 tablespoons (1 1/4 ounces) sugar
1 tablespoon granular lecithin (optional)
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) butter
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon Buttery Sweet Dough Flavor or vanilla extract
1 can Almond Schmear
1 cup (4 ounces) confectioners' sugar or glazing sugar
4 to 5 tablespoons (2 to 2 1/2 ounces) heavy cream or milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
To make the dough: Combine all of the dough ingredients, and mix and knead themby hand, electric mixer, or bread machineuntil you've made a soft, elastic dough. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, cover, and place in a warm place to rise for 60 to 90 minutes. The dough should almost double in size.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly greased work surface and roll it into a skinny rectangle, about 14 by 20 inches. The longer and thinner the dough is, the more spirals of almond filling each roll will have.
Spread a thin layer of almond schmear over the dough, leaving about 1 inch uncovered on the short side nearest you. Reserve about 1/4 cup of the schmear to brush over the top of the buns.
Roll the dough toward you, beginning with the short end farthest from you. Cut the log into 12 pieces. Place buns into a lightly greased 9 x 13-inch pan, pressing down lightly. Brush the remaining schmear over the top of the buns. Cover and set in a warm place to rise for about 45 minutes; the buns should almost fill the pan and look puffy.
To bake: Bake the buns in a preheated 350°F oven for 28 to 32 minutes, until they're light brown all over. Remove them from the oven and let them cool in the pan for 10 minutes before transferring them to a rack to cool to just slightly warm before frosting.
To frost: Whisk together the heavy cream and confectioners' or glazing sugar for a creamy glaze; use milk for a thinner glaze. Spread on the slightly warm buns. Yield: 12 buns.