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TBB - Caramel Buns

Rose's Alpha Bakers

TBB - Caramel Buns

Patricia Reitz

Caramel Buns - ButterYum

Caramel Buns - ButterYum

Welcome to week 15 of the Alpha Bakers bake-a-long, an online project where a group of food bloggers bake our way through The Baking Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum.  Most of the recipes made during this project will not be shared, but I will post my commentary followed by a full photo tutorial.

This week's selection - Caramel Buns.  A brioche dough filled with cinnamon sugar and rum soaked raisins, brushed with a rum glaze, and drizzled with a scrumptious sticky caramel sauce.  The recipe calls for pecans as well, but I omitted them because they were made for a family with nut allergies. 

Special ingredients and/or equipment needed - two 9-inch round cake pans, stand mixer or bread machine, two 16-ounce glass canning jars or 3-inch diameter ramekins, pastry brush.  

Optional ingredients and/or equipment suggested - Rose's caramel potdigital scale, pastry cloth

How do they taste - One of my daughters loved them, but me and my other daughter thought they were "ok".  Honestly, I really wasn't thrilled with the flavor of the brioche part of the caramel buns - I found it flavorless.  But I really liked the rum soaked raisins and sticky caramel sauce so that helped. 

How do they look - Beautiful served in ring form, but individually they are shaped like trapezoids.  Not a big deal for some perhaps, but I've always preferred the symmetry of a round swirled bun.

Level of difficulty - Intermediate. 

Were the directions clear - Not entirely.  There are 8 pages of written directions for these buns.  EIGHT!  Do yourself a favor and read them over a few times before you make this recipe.

There is a paragraph about serving these buns for brunch that seemed to stump a lot of the Alpha Bakers.  I wasn't stumped by it, but I felt like the paragraph was out of place - seems to me like it would have been better as a sidebar note.  

And let me say this, I'm really starting to get annoyed with the fact that the recipes in this book do not include a timeline.  I fully expected to start this recipe in the afternoon and bake it off the next morning, but the dough wasn't ready to bake until later that evening.  I guess I could have figured that out if I had read the directions more carefully, but honestly, with EIGHT pages of directions, I tend to focus my concentration on the various procedures and techniques rather than the rest and chill times.  

What would I do differently next time - Bake the buns individually in muffin tins or something similar that would result in a round shape.  Also, rather than use a beaten egg to adhere the brown sugar/raisin filling, I think melted butter would taste much, much better.  

Next up - Sour Cherry Pie (Pi Day), March 16, 2015.  Sour cherries are hard to find, especially this time of year so I make no promises. 

Okay, here's my photo tutorial.  

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links to more alpha baker photo tutorials