These incredible buns take a day of wait and effort, but are so worth it! The bread is light, buttery, and luscious, gently warmed by spice.
Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Keyword: yeast bread
Author: Beth Cato
1/2cupcold milk or half & half
3large eggs room temperature
1teaspoonpure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
3 1/4cupsall-purpose flour plus more as needed
1 1/4teaspoonskosher salt
2sticksunsalted butter (16 Tablespoons) cold, cut into cubes
1/4cuplight brown sugar packed
1/2stickunsalted butter (4 Tablespoons) softened
In a small bowl, whisk together the milk, 2 of the eggs, and the vanilla. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment affixed, mix together the flour, sugar, and salt. Mix in the chilled butter cubes until they are broken down to the size of peas, which will take a minute or two. Keep the mixer running as the milk mixture is drizzled in. Everything should come together as dough.
Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface. Knead it into a ball and wrap it tightly in plastic wrap. Chill it in fridge for at least 6 hours, or a full day.
About 2 1/2 hours before the buns are to be served, prepare to shape them. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. In a small bowl, mix together the filling's two sugars, cardamom, and cinnamon. In another bowl, beat the remaining egg with a splash of water and set it aside.
Lightly flour a large, clean work surface and a rolling pin. [Note for bakers who have hot kitchens: you may need to move fast here, as high-butter content dough can be finicky as it warms.] Roll out the dough into a 12x16 rectangle. Use an uneven spatula or the back of a spoon to evenly spread the softened butter over the surface, leaving a 1-inch border along the top and bottom edges.
Sprinkle the sugar and spice mixture over the butter. Brush the edges with the beaten egg; set aside the egg to use again for a wash in a short while. Fold the dough in half so that the two egg-washed edges meet. Then use a knife, pizza cutter, or bench knife to make ten even slices perpendicular to the fold.
One at a time, pick up a strip at the two short ends and twist them each in opposite directions while pulling and stretching gently. Coil the strand to make a bun, tucking the outermost end underneath the round. Set on prepared sheet and continue to form more with several inches of space between them.
Cover formed buns with plastic wrap and set aside to rise until puffed, about 1 1/2 hours.
Preheat oven at 400-degrees and situate racks inside to have five inches of space between them.
Remove the plastic wrap and brush the buns with the remaining egg wash. Bake for 12 minutes, then swap the pan positions in the oven, then bake another 8 to 12 minutes. Buns should be a consistent brown, and a digital thermometer discreetly plunged into a center roll should be over 190-degrees.
Let rolls cool slightly before indulging. Rolls will keep for up to 3 days in a sealed container at room temperature, and will taste best warmed slightly in an oven or toaster oven. Rolls can also be frozen for later enjoyment.