Maple Sticky Buns and Going Out On A Limb

Today I tried something completely new!

I happen to enjoy the challenge presented by eating as much locally-produced food as possible, but every once in a while it’s good to get out of my little box. I have been cruising the Food52 website for months now, watching the contests and browsing the recipes. Well, I finally caught one of their calls for recipe testers- so I signed up!

The theme for this recipe contest was “Best Maple Recipes”. Now, eventually I would love to send in one of my recipes to a Food52 contest, but this wasn’t the one. Maple syrup is crazy expensive here in Florida and there are locally-grown and processed alternatives like cane syrup, so I can’t even tell you the last time I bought maple syrup. There were quite a few maple-centric recipes to choose from, but one really caught my eye- Robert Frost Rolls.

I know! Mayonnaise and applesauce in bread! Isn’t that crazy? How could I possibly resist?

Then the mental substitutions started. Oo. I could use cane syrup instead of maple syrup. And I could thaw and puree those persimmons in the freezer and use that instead of applesauce. And I still have pecans; I like pecans better than walnuts anyway.

But first I had to make them exactly the way the author wrote the recipe. Then I write a short review and hopefully the review gets published. So I sent my husband out to buy all of these exotic ingredients. Applesauce. Maple syrup. Walnuts. It’s kind of cool that these ingredients feel quite indulgent and exotic, because they are, to us.

So how did the sweet rolls turn out? Here’s my review!

Review: Robert Frost Rolls by ChefJune.

I was intrigued by this recipe immediately. Mayonnaise and apple sauce in bread dough? I resisted the temptation to tinker and made them exactly according to the author’s recipe.

These might be the best-textured sweet rolls I have ever made. The crumb is perfect, slightly stretchy and soft. They are somehow not dense at all despite the high percentage of whole wheat flour. The dough comes together easily and rolls out beautifully. The maple flavor is mild but definitely present. For added oomph I suggest adding a simple white icing flavored with maple syrup, however if you prefer sticky buns that are not overly sweet like I do, this is definitely the recipe for you. Also, I got 16 medium-sized buns out of the recipe instead of 12. Bonus!

Now I get to tinker!

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