I hope everyone enjoyed the long weekend. I sure did. Some highlights: Audrey’s sticky toffee pudding; blowing bubbles with Fiona; Cynar flips; dog walks in the rain; waffles; watching Fiona open presents – speaking of which, she ended up with her own toy cell phone, laptop, purse, and credit cards . . . I suppose it was only a matter of time. After all, this is the same girl who has a huge wad of cash hidden inside her alphabet train. I swear, she’s like a squirrel, hiding currency around the house in case we run out of diapers and forget to pay the utility bill. I digress.
I’d say if I had to choose a theme for the holidays it would be baking. In addition to the sticky toffee pudding, and at least a dozen batches of cookies, we capped off the weekend with Sarah’s flaky, buttery, blueberry almond morning buns. They’ve quickly become a household favorite. If you weren’t one of the lucky souls who received a Christmas copy of Sarah’s book, The Sugar Hit, now’s the time to treat yourself. I mean, she has an entire section on midnight snacks for goodness sake. MIDNIGHT SNACKS!! In the meantime, go ahead and give these delightful little guys a try.
- In a bowl of a stand mixer with the dough hook attached, combine the flour, yeast, warm water, and egg. Knead for about 5 minutes until the dough is smooth and elastic.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and leave in a warm place for an hour, or until dough has doubled in size.
- One the dough has risen, lightly flour your work surface and roll into a 12 x 16 inch rectangle - short side facing you.
- Thinly slice the butter and place it in the middle half of the dough, leaving a quarter of the dough exposed at the top and the bottom.
- Fold the top and the bottom of the dough over the butter so that they meet in the middle, covering the butter. Now fold the right and left edges of the dough into the middle. Fold the whole thing in half from right to left, so the seam ends up on the left. Press the dough firmly down to seal, and roll back out into a 12 x 16 inch rectangle. Repeat the folding process, then wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least two hours or overnight.
- When you're ready to bake, preheat the oven to 400° F.
- Split the vanilla bean in half and scrape out the seeds. In a small bowl combine the seeds and the sugar.
- Dust your work surface with about 1/4 of the sugar. Take the dough out of the refrigerator and dust the top with another 1/4 of the sugar. Roll the dough out into a 12 x 16 inch rectangle. Spread the remaining sugar over the surface of the dough, and scatter with blueberries and almonds.
- Roll the dough up tightly like a jelly roll and slice into 9 rounds. Put the rounds in a non-stick muffin tin and set aside to rise for 15 minutes.
- Bake for 30 minutes, or until they reach a deep golden brown.
- Let cool for one minute in the tin before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
(images by HonestlyYUM; recipe adapted with permission from The Sugar Hit)