Pumpkin Cinnamon Buns

I'm relatively new this whole blogging thing, really it's only been seven months since I first started, and when my favourite season rolled around I was so excited to start blogging about everything autumn. Little did I know that every other blogger out there was excited for exactly the same thing. Everything has been pumpkin this and pumpkin that for a month now!

Not that I'm complaining though! It's just that somehow my exciting autumnal themed posts don't seem so original anymore. Never mind though, can you really ever have too many pumpkin flavoured sticky bun recipes? I say no. So here's another: Pumpkin Cinnamon Buns. I made these over the weekend and they really are something to sooth away all the blustery autumn day chills, and they look a lot trickier to make than they really are, trust me. Adapted from a recipe from King Arthur Flour.

First make the dough:
1 cup of canned pumpkin
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons of lukewarm water
2 and 1/2 cups of unbleached all purpose flour
1 and 3/4 cups of white whole wheat flour
1/4 cups of nonfat dry milk
3/4 tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice
3 tablespoons of brown sugar
1 and 1/12 teaspoons of salt
2 teaspoons of fast acting yeast

Just chuck it all in a food processor and pull it out when the dough is all smooth. If you don't have a food processor like me, sift all the dry ingredients into the mixed wet ingredients and keep folding over on itself with a wooden spoon until you can't do it anymore, then carry on kneading it by hand until smooth. Add a little more flour if it's too wet, then put it in a lightly greased bowl and cover for 1 and 1/2 hours to rise.

I like to be prepared so I went right ahead and mixed the filling and the icing right away, but you can take a break if all that kneading has tired you out. Once you're done making these two, you can just set them aside in separate bowls and come back to them later.

For the filling, mix all together in no particular order:
2/3 cups of packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice
1/2 cup of chopped pecans

For the icing, mix all together in no particular order:
120 grams (4 ounces) of cream cheese
4 tablespoons of soft unsalted butter
1/4 cup of pure maple syrup
1/2 cup of white granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice

After an hour and a half of letting your dough rise, wipe a thin layer of butter onto a table top and dump out the dough. Spread it into a thin rectangle using your hands and a rolling pin until it's roughly 14 inches by 22 inches.

Melt some butter in the microwave and spread a thin layer onto the dough to make the filling stick, and then leaving one inch at one short end free, spread the filling mix evenly over your dough and then  roll the dough into a log starting with the end that's covered with filling.

Slice the log up into 1 and 1/2  thick rolls using a really sharp knife and pile into a lightly greased 9x9 inch pan that is 2 inches deep. Cover the pan with a cloth to let the dough rise again for one hour.

Finally, bake the rolls in a preheated 170C or 375F oven. Bake for about 20 minutes or until the buns are lightly brown.* Once they're done, turn them out onto a drying rack and allow to cool for 15 minutes.

Finally, separate the buns. Put one in a bowl, slather with icing and attack with a fork (or with your fingers, if you're uncouth like me :)

*I overcooked mine a little, so definitely keep an eye on them. My oven is rubbish though so if yours works properly you don't have to worry about it.

**For extra fun, you can always employ a little "helper" to dip their fingers in everything to see if they taste good yet...