Sunday, 5 October 2014

UBC Sticky Buns !! Woo Hoo !! About time !!

OK, ok, everyone, calm down. This post is for YOU ... something you can make at home or work or at a friend's place ... nothing fancy here ... but learn to make these and you'll be the coolest cat on the block. Seriously. I know. The papparazzi follow me everywhere.

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Yeah ... sure ... Anyway, the University of British Columbia, where Chef did his undergraduate work and part of his graduate school makes these sticky buns.
They're a cultural tradition at UBC, and are so popular that the university now makes them and sells them downtown for all the former students who are suffering from withdrawl symptoms, or anyone who just wants to check out UBC's buns.

Stop laughing! This is a serious post. No giggling. none at all.

So, here's how you make these decadent, delicious things. Soon, in a matter of only a few hours, you too will have buns to die for. STOP GIGGLING !!

A few serious hints from experience ...

Make sure you have the kitchen or pantry warm for rising and proofing, and enough space to do it. Be sure you have enough flour ... Chef buys his at Fiesta Farms and presently at home is trying out "Mountain Path Organic All-Purpose Enriched Flour". Take time to plump the raisins (details below) and Chef uses more butter and sugar than the recipe calls for when preparing the pans and doing the centre-filling because he likes a more dripy bun than a dry bun. You do not have to use expensive butter, or expensive anything, to have great UBC Sticky Buns ... the recipe was developed by a Chef
in the 1950s, when there were still many shortages from the war, so originally the recipe called for margarine (for example) because it was more easily bought, and cheap. Now, we use butter. Try to avoid using food fakes.

To scald the milk, pour it into a pot with a large bottom (i.e., a wider pot is preferable to a taller pot) and heat on medium to medium-high while stirring with a whisk until bubbles start to form on the sides of the pot. Then turn the pot off and stir for a moment or so more, then decant the milk into whatever pot, bowl or pan you will need it in. In this case, I scald my milk and after I turn off the stove I toss in the butter that I have prepared by chopping it up roughly into small cubes so it has a large surface area and dissolves quickly.
In order to cool the milk, I put it into a thin-sided metal bowl and put it outside (in wintertime) or in the frig (in warmer weather) until it is down to room temperature or just a little above. The milk must be cooled so the eggs don't get cooked when you're making the dough!

Take time to really prepare your baking pans or muffin trays with a goodly load of the butter/sugar mixture ... you will be proofing in the tray or pan, then baking directly. Be sure to gently cover the trays or pans whilst proofing so the tops don't dry out. (Remove covers for baking!)

Have fun making your buns, and let Chef know how they turn out!

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