January 21, 2011

Brown Sugar Mini Buns for the Winter Comfort Food Event at Dazzling Kitchen

When Tamanna from Dazzling Kitchen wrote me an email asking if I was interested in participating into the Comfort Food Event she was hosting, I immediately thought “heck yeah! Comfort Food? That’s so me!”.

Those of you that know me a bit, know that I usually bake according to my mood. I know, I should be more strategic if I wanted to be a successful food blogger. I should post about what is fashionable, about what SEO and google analytics tell are the most searched words blah blah blah. But the truth is: I truly bake according to what I have available at home in that moment, to what I found at a store or farmers’ market that inspires me that week, and to what I’m craving.

I knew January was going to be a hard month for me. So I knew I needed A LOT of comfort food. That’s why I said yes to her. I was sure I was going to find many occasions to bake my comfort food.

In the winter, comfort food for me is mostly something baked with yeast. I believe there is nothing more soothing than making (by hand!) and eating bread and sweet buns. Last weekend, while sick, I suddenly felt the urge to make these brown sugar buns when I realized I have made them many times without ever blogging about them. These mini buns have truly been my comfort food lately. I had found the perfect recipe to share with you. Don’t be tricked by the name…they really are far from the extreme sweetness of sticky buns or others of the kind. The sweetness level of these mini buns is very modest. Which makes them great for any breakfast or afternoon snack without getting sugar high (or an upset stomach!)

Make sure you head over to Dazzling Kitchen to check out her blog and her event. I’m sure you will find plenty of recipes to satisfy your needs for comfort food.

Brown Sugar Buns

240 ml (8 fl oz or 1 cup) milk
10 ml (2 tsp) vanilla extract
113 gr (1 stick or 1/2 cup) butter, melted
1/3 cup sugar
450-510 gr (15.75-18 oz or 3 ½ to 4 cups) all-purpose flour
2 eggs (beaten)
10 gr (2 tsp) instant yeast
5 gr (1 tsp) salt

57 gr (1/2 stick or 1/4 cup) butter, melted
1/2 cup brown sugar

1 egg
30 ml (2 tbsp) milk


Pour the milk and the vanilla extract into a saucepan and bring the milk to a scald without letting it boil.

Pour the warm milk into a large bowl and let it cool a bit. Then add the melted butter and the sugar.

Add about almost all the flour and the beaten eggs and mix until smooth. Finally add the salt and the instant yeast.

Sprinkle some flour on a flat surface and pour out the sticky dough.

Knead for about 10 minutes adding flour if the dough results too sticky (I practically used all the 4 cups of flour).

When the dough has become smooth and elastic put it in a greased bowl, cover it with plastic wrap and let is rise for at least 1 hour or until double in bulk.

After dough has risen, pour out onto a flat surface and cut it into 16 pieces. You might want them to be all more or less of the same weight.

Roll out one piece of dough to a rectangle. Brush the top with a little butter and generously sprinkle with brown sugar. Roll out another piece of dough into a rectangle of more or less the same size and place it on top of the first rectangle.

Starting on the longest end roll up the dough tightly. Pinch the ends and seam closed. Place the dough seam side down and set aside.

Now go ahead and do the same with the other 14 pieces of dough. You will end up with 8 rolls of dough.

Cut each roll of dough into about 3 triangles. You will end up with 24 pieces of dough. (wow, after all this numbers…I really hope I did the math right!)

Place into a 11” round tart pan. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise for about 1 hour or till double in bulk.

Brush with the egg wash and bake in a preheated 375F oven for about 30 minutes or till top is golden brown. Allow to cool before removing from pan.

Have a sweet day!

Souce: adapted from Cooking Bread, where you can find wonderful step by step pictures of the process!


  1. Wow. This definitely is a comfort food. I wish I could wake up tomorrow to this!

  2. Ok, so we need to have a few cups of hot coffee, sit around the breakfast table with this plopped down in front of us and unwind piece after piece as we eat it and talk. Can we do that?

  3. @Belinda: oh I wish I still had some for tomorrow morning too :)
    @Christiane: sure we should do that! And after cook something from the Dorie Greenspan's book you just won (I'm so jealous!)

  4. I think mood is a totally fine way to plan your blogging baking. We love you whatever baking mood strikes! And comfort food has its own special place in all our hearts. Lovely modestly sweet bitty buns.

  5. Oohhh, Sara!! Wow! I'm all over these. While I love Cinnamon Rolls and Sticky buns, many times they are too sweet for me. I'm not really a "sweet" girl, so these really sound like they would be perfect for me.
    I bake and cook the same way you do. I visit my market and we eat that week what we find there. For baking, I bake what sounds good or what the kids or my husband requests. Yep, it's probably not the best for stats. My grilling recipes in January might not be the most timely, but that's what I'm doing, so that's what gets posted. Your baking is always the best! Don't change a thing.

    Hope your month is sorting out and slowing down and that you are healthy again!

  6. This is so beautiful! And I have all of these ingredients :) I may need to try this tasty comfort food!

  7. Sara, I love these, I actually don't like the sickly sweet ones. I hear you on being a moody blogger. I've been making a lot of yeast things too, have to try these. Hope you have a fantastic weekend.

  8. These buns would be perfect for a Sunday brunch! (um, like this Sunday!) And I love that you bake according to your mood. I actually thought everyone did that until I saw 1001 posts for macarons! Then I realized that there are 'trends' in food blogging. Who knew!!!?!?!? And I, like you, bake/cook, according to what I have in the fridge and pantry! :)

  9. Nice recipe. Thank you for sharing!

  10. Oh heavens, I bake according to my mood and it never occured to me to bake for SEO! That would be no fun and likely end up with me baking what everyone else in the world was baking! Blah!
    Your mini buns look delicious and so much better than they would if you were trying to make them the most popular post in the world ;)

  11. Those are beautiful buns! I haven't baked with yeast in a long time, but I did buy both regular and fast acting yeast at the sore, I'm getting closer!
    I blog about what is happening in my life, birthdays, engagements, dinners, or what's for dinner tonight!

  12. Love the brown sugar instead of cinnamon in these. The rolling, twisting pan of buns is like a work of art!

  13. They're so cute. Thanks for the link (although I need another food blog like a need a hole in my head).


  14. Delicious topography in the photo... really draws you in for a closer sweet gaze! Brava!

  15. Honestly, the second I set eyes on that first photo of those mini buns, I was just like, "Woaaaah." They look so fantastic! Not to mention that I totally agree with you about bready comfort foods. There's nothing better!

  16. Those look so wonderful and delicious! Thank you for sharing them. I'm so glad I found your blog and am looking forward to exploring your recipes and seeing more! :) - Georgia

  17. I'm all about comfort food this time of year, it's so warming! These little buns look so cute and tasty, I'm picturing them swimming in glaze too, yum!

  18. Oh yum, I'm a big carb lover and bread is always my choice when it comes to comfort food. Your buns look so lovely and that brown sugar in them would be very tasty. I have a new linky party on my blog called "Sweets for a Saturday" and I'd like to invite you to stop by and link this up or another sweet treat if you wish. http://sweet-as-sugar-cookies.blogspot.com/2011/01/sweets-for-saturday-1_21.html

  19. Sara
    I think you have your own dazzling kitchen right there! Your baked goods never fail to inspire and make me hungry! Those lovely mini-buns look delicious!
    So hurry on over, I got the espresso!

  20. I'm glad you guys liked these mini buns.
    @ Georgia: welcome to CaffeIna! I follow your blog from some time now and I'm honored you stopped by
    @The Chef: oh I wish I could come over to have a coffee with you :)

  21. these sound like a great comfort Sunday breakfast if only someone would bake them for me :)) otherwise it can be considered a lunch treat
    Thanks for sharing Sara and congrats on making it to Top 9

  22. Those look so tasty and pretty, I can totally understand why they'd be your comfort food... I just envision myself grabbing a good chunk from the pan :)

  23. Hot Polka Dot's Mom (Judy)January 23, 2011 at 6:35 AM

    To drool for and so pretty! What time is coffee?

  24. Sara, I love that you bake according to your moods. You give us such a wide variety of treats that we wouldn't see otherwise. I guess I haven't thought much about cooking according to what's popular out there. I just make what I want also.

    When you say this is only modestly sweet, I know I'll like it. I keep looking at the first picture and I want to just grab a piece (or two) to dunk in my tea.

    Enjoy your Sunday. :-)

  25. Mmm.. these look like the perfect comfort food. I wouldn't worry about what google analytics says. Your posts are honest and from the heart and recipes are great, that's what brings people to you :)

  26. mmmmmm they look sooo yummy good! Wow! I wish I could reach over and just grab a few... thank you for sharing! I can't wait to try these!

  27. That. Looks. Awesome. I totally want to serve that for a brunch or something. So lovely and classic.

  28. Sara - It is great that you are authentic to your moods and not what other factors may dictate. These brown sugar mini buns look absolutely supreme! Congrats on the Top 9 today!! Well deserved!

  29. Congrats on the top 9! These sound amazing :)!

  30. Sara-non ti cambiare per niente! I love the way you bake for your moods!! Auguri per il Top 9 oggi!These look just so good my dear. I also bake for my moods and what I can find here:)

  31. I like your attitude toward baking and these mini buns :) They do look like a comforting way to start the day...especially if there's coffee involved :)

  32. Wow! These are beautiful and I love that they aren't overly sweet... I can imagine myself munching on these any time of day or night...

  33. Sara, I am so happy you feel better!

    My mom makes something similar and calls it "the rose" - it could be sweet and savory. I am yet to attempt to make it, but looking at your recipe, I think that I just might, if nothing else, to replace the store-bought cinnamon rolls my husband buys for the girls (grrrr:(

    Great photos, as usual:)Stai bene!

  34. My mouth started watering the minute I saw the first picture! These look absolutely amazing!

  35. Oh, yummy! I can see why this is a comfort food! Lovin' it
    Jess : )

  36. I love that these are sweet, but not too sweet. Just the thing to have with my coffee in the morning! :)

  37. This is a great recipe. I can't wait to try this. I mave been craving cinnabuns, peacan buns, and any kind of buns that has a sugary filling.


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