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This is another way to use the Fried Bread dough. It was for these that I attempted to make maple cream. The maple or brown sugar/maple syrup combination is the compromise. Needless to say, I’ll try the maple cream experiment again.
1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) water (or sap!)
1 cup (4 ounces) cornmeal*
1/2 cup (5 1/2 ounces) maple syrup
2 teaspoons instant yeast
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) unsalted butter
1/3 cup Baker’s Special Dry Milk or nonfat dried milk
2 cups (8 ounces) King Arthur 100% White Whole Wheat Flour
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 1/2 to 3 cups (10 to 12 ounces) King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter
3/4 cup (5 1/4 ounces) maple or brown sugar
1/4 cup (2 3/4 ounces) maple syrup
2/3 cup (about 3 ounces) dried cranberries, steeped in sap (or tea)
1 cup (about 3 1/2 ounces) chopped, toasted pecans (toast them at 350°F for about 10 minutes)
*The cornmeal can be handled several ways. You can add it, as is, to your dough, which will give it a "bite." Or if you’d like it a bit softened, bring the water to a boil, stir in the cornmeal and syrup, and let it come back to room temperature before adding the other ingredients. Another way to soften it is to create a biga by combining the room-temperature water, cornmeal, whole wheat flour, a cup of unbleached all-purpose flour, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and 1/2 teaspoon of the yeast. Mix this together, cover, and let it sit overnight. This not only softens the cornmeal but will develop its flavor as well.
However you handle the cornmeal, when you’re ready, combine the remaining ingredients until you have a dough that’s pliable but kneadable. Knead until well-developed -- by hand, mixer or bread machine -- and place in a greased bowl, covered, to let rise until doubled.
Knock it down and roll it out on a lightly floured surface until it’s approximately 12 x 24 inches. Prepare a 9 x 13-inch or 12 x 12-inch baking pan by melting a tablespoon of butter in the bottom and sprinkling about 1/4 cup of maple or brown sugar over the surface (or even maple syrup). Spread the remaining butter on the surface of the dough, leaving about 1/2 inch "naked" all around the edge.
Mix the remaining maple or brown sugar with the maple syrup, and drizzle it down the center of the dough, spreading it over the surface of the butter. Drain the cranberries and distribute, with the pecans, evenly over the butter/sugar/syrup layer.
Roll the dough into a log, starting with a long edge. The filling is a bit sloppy, so as you roll close to the other side, pick the far side up to meet your roll and pinch firmly together. Pressing through the dough with a bench knife, or sawing gently with a serrated knife, cut slices about 3/4-inch thick, placing them artfully in your baking pan. Scoop up any debris with the bench knife, and drizzle it atop the buns. Cover the pan with plastic wrap, and let the buns rise for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until they’ve puffed noticeably.
Preheat your oven to 350°F. Bake the buns for 30 to 35 minutes. If they appear to be browning too quickly, turn the heat down to 325°F for the last 10 minutes.
When the buns are done, take them out of the oven, place a half sheet pan or something more attractive (but large enough) over the baking pan, and flip them over. (Be very careful with this, because a misstep can mean not only a frightful mess but also a potentially bad burn.) Scrape anything left in the pan onto the sticky buns. Let the buns cool a bit so their structure sets and they can be eaten without mishap. Yield: about 36 buns.
Nutrition information per serving (1/36 of recipe, 44g): 124 cal, 3g fat, 3g protein, 14g complex carbohydrates, 8g sugar, 2g dietary fiber, 2mg cholesterol, 157mg sodium, 104mg potassium, 14RE vitamin A, 1mg iron, 25mg calcium, 59mg phosphorus.
This recipe reprinted from The Baking Sheet Newsletter, Vol. XI, No. 3, Early Spring 2000 issue.