Chocolate Chip Sticky Buns

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Cinnamon rolls are quite possibly the ultimate indulgence.  They are too sweet, too fatty, too sticky, and too large to be considered anything close to a sensible food item, and yet parade themselves as a breakfast food and are subtle enough to be consumed en masse.  They are known for their migratory pattern which starts on a plate and ends up on an already-inflated pair of hips.  My general rule of thumb when dealing with cinnamon rolls is to keep eating them until lack of cinnamon rolls or other extraordinary circumstances occur.

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Sticky Buns adapted from The Bouchon Bakery Cookbook (makes 8)

263 grams AP flour
6 g salt
6 g active dry yeast (recipe asks for instant, but I didn’t have any)
44 g warm milk
2/3 stick butter
132 g eggs
35 g sugar

Filling

1 cup brown sugar
1 cup chocolate chips
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 stick butter

Icing a la Food.com

2 cups powdered sugar
2 tablespoons softened butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon milk

1. Proof the yeast in the milk with a pinch of sugar for 5-10 minutes, or until foamy.  In the meantime, combine the flour and salt in a bowl and set aside.

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2. Beat together eggs, sugar, and yeasty milk and mix into the dry ingredients.

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3. Stir with a spoon until just combined, then dump the whole thing into your stand mixer.

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4. Mix on a low speed for 20 minutes.  Slowly add in the butter one small cube at a time.  The dough will be very resistant to the introduction of fat and you will probably need to take it out of the mixer and smush it around a bit.  I found it to be pretty messy, and it sounded rather like I was rummaging through the entrails of a dead animal, so it may be advisable to clear the room of onlookers before proceeding.

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5. Once the butter is fully incorporated, knead in the mixer for another 7 minutes or so.  The dough should be soft, oily, and a little sticky.  Cover and let rise in a warm place for an hour.

6. While your dough is rising, prepare the filling by mixing the brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, and chocolate chips in a bowl.

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6.  Now the dough is ready to be shaped.  Roll out your dough into 12×15 inch rectangle (that number is kind of arbitrary, as I don’t remember exactly what size I rolled my dough out to, but it should be about a 1/4 inch in thickness).  Spread the filling over the flattened dough evenly, leaving a 1/4 inch margin around the edges.  Position the rectangle so that the longer side is facing you and roll tightly away from you (so the end roll is the length of the longer side).  Cut into 8 pieces.  I use a string or piece of floss by tucking the string under the dough, tying a loose knot on top, and pulling tight.  The string will slice right through the dough.

7.  Cover loosely with plastic wrap and stick into the refrigerator overnight.

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8.  Let rise for another hour on the counter and bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown.  While it’s baking, prepare the icing by whipping together the sugar and milk.

9.  After the buns have cooled, convince yourself that it’s okay that they’re ugly, drizzle them with the icing, and serve!  (And by that I mean serve all of them to yourself.)

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