A Sticky Situation
Feb. 15, 2010 9:19 pm
Updated: Feb. 23, 2010 7:27 am
I have a confession to make: I've had fear of yeast. Sure, I've tried to get past it. I've brought home little packets of yeast, vowing to coax the darlings into life and fill my house with the loving aroma of freshly baked bread. But in my pantry the yeast languished until well past its shelf life, another 2 1/4 teaspoons of dormant organisms not allowed to fulfill their destiny.
Then my dear friend J. offered to show me how to bake a simple loaf of bread. (She probably got tired of hearing me hopelessly declare, This is the year that I learn how to bake. No really!) Lucky me, though. My friend is a fearless cook and a generous teacher. In fact, she was so successful, that I went home and baked another loaf of bread right away. And another the next day. And a few more after that.
Then with Valentine's Day coming right up, I decided I'd use my new-found friendship with yeast to bake a batch of sticky buns for my family. I mean, what says I Love You like sweet, warm, yeasty bread rolls wrapped around cinnamon and topped with a molten mass of butter and brown sugar?
Nice thought. Too bad the yeast and I were not such good friends yet that we could read each other's minds.
I had this vision of prepping the dough, letting it rise overnight in the fridge, and sneaking downstairs early in the morning to shape the rolls, let them rise, and pop them in the oven. I imagined my family waking up to a pan full of hot sticky love buns.
I had no idea how long the process would actually take. Turns out, it takes for-freaking-ever for sweet, buttery dough to rise. Maybe the weather slowed it down--it's been rainy in Seattle, and I read that it might be a factor. Guess it was. Sigh, tap foot, check clock, check dough, sigh. Repeat.
Bottom line: buns didn't hit the table until well past noon. Until then, I fretted myself sick.
But oh my! It was all worth it--the time, the labor, the frustration, the doubt. It all melted away with the first forkful. And the next. And my family ate up all the love I'd put into my very first batch of homemade sticky buns.
So yes, I'll gladly get into this sticky situation again. Wouldn't you?
Happy February to you, and happy cooking!
My first attempt at sticky buns.