Pumpkin Pecan Sticky Buns

Oh the flavors of fall. When cans of pumpkin are everywhere, begging to be used in inventive ways. Like these sticky buns! With lots of pumpkin in the dough, you get the great orange color and a hint of pumpkin flavor. For an even pumpkin-ier experience, I’d smooth 2 tablespoons of pumpkin over the rolled out dough before sprinkling on the brown sugar and cinnamon.

Pumpkin Pecan Sticky Buns (makes 12):

  • 1 cup unmilk
  • 2&1/4 tsp active yeast (or one packet)
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup turbinado sugar
  • 2 T + 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 5 T pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup brown rice syrup
  • 1/3 cup pecan pieces
  • 1/8 tsp allspice

Heat the unmilk until it reaches 110 degrees, and mix with active yeast. Let it sit for at least 5 minutes until the yeast is bubbly. Stir in pumpkin.

Place 3 cups of flour in bowl, and mix with sugar, 1 T cinnamon and salt. Add your milk and pumpkin mixture, and stir until a soft dough begins to form. If the dough is not coming together at all, add more unmilk, one tablespoon at a time, until dough is soft and slightly sticky. Knead dough for 5 to 10 minutes on clean surface until it is smoother and more elastic.

Place dough in a greased bowl and cover with a warm towel. Let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes. Then punch the dough down a little and roll out into a large rectangle (about 10×14). Sprinkle with the brown sugar and 1 T cinnamon. Roll tightly and cut 1 inch off of each end (side note: I usually save these, cut them really small, and then bake in the toaster oven for my toddler to eat. They have less sugar and are a nice size). Now cut into 12 one-inch circles.

Use cooking spray to grease a  round cake pan, pie pan, or an appropriate-sized casserole dish. Place pecan pieces evenly in the bottom, and put your rolls on top. Mix the remaining 1/2 tsp of cinnamon, allspice, brown rice syrup and maple syrup in a microwaveable container. Heat in microwave for 20 seconds, and then pour mixture over the cinnamon rolls.

Let rise in a warm place for 20 more minutes. Then, place sticky buns in a 350 degree oven for 25 minutes, or until they are golden and cooked in the center. For presentation you can flip the baking dish over onto a large plate, or if you are lazy (like me) just pull out a sticky bun and spoon the maple-pecan glaze over the top.


Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls

These may, in fact, taste better than they look. Is that even possible?

From the November issue of Vegetarian Times (who lately can do no wrong) come the most amazing cinnamon rolls! They’re like a magical hybrid of all things delicious: maple, cinnamon, pecans, sweet potatoes…and sugar. SUGAR.

Were I to make these again (and I WILL) I found that using vegan cream cheese to make the icing didn’t add to the flavor much, but did add naughty naughty transfats. I think I’d just try to make a thinner icing with almond milk, or even mix it up with some sweet potato to get even more sweet potato flavor.

Okay, two changes: the dough was a little tough to work with. I’m not sure why, but I think it needed a little more liquid, or more something. I like the feel of the Vegan Brunch dough better, so I’d probably hybridize between those two recipes. When all was said and done, the rolls themselves weren’t tough, so…who knows?

What I do know is that I have about 5 of these bad boys in my freezer right now! LUCKY!

Maple Sausages & Hash

This dinner is brought to you by brunch. And by the Post Punk Kitchen! And the letter K, and the number 7.

I’ve wanted to try these maple sausages forever. And my only beef *snicker* with them is that they’re too firm. I’m like baby bear when it comes to sausages. Not too soft, not too hard. I think the Happy Herbivore Spicy Sausage has the best texture, for my money, and that’s what I prefer to make. So now I just need to figure out the ratios so I can get different flavors–because the smoky maple flavor in this sausage was fantastic! It seems sorta funny to me that when I was an omni, I hated sausage. But I totally, completely, head-over-heels adore vegan sausage.

The rest of the dinner was just a bunch of steamed kale with garlic salt and nutritional yeast on it (the most vegan-y thing in the world) and Red Flannel Hash from Vegan Brunch. I’ve made it before, and guess what? Still good.


Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

Funny, isn’t it? I’ve been trying out different recipes, testing out different theories about what makes a good chocolate chip cookie, and the answer was there all the time. This is pretty much my same exact recipe for chocolate chip cookies, just with two easy switches to make it vegan. And it’s perfect. Sure, that sounds like bragging–but you’ll see!

Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies (makes 2 dozen):

  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 T maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 3 T umilk
  • 1 T ground flax seeds
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 and 1/3 cup flour
  • 1 T baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt (you can use 1/2 tsp, if you like saltier cookies)
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

First, mix your unmilk and flax seeds together in a small cup, and set aside. Then, in a medium mixing bowl, combine sugars, maple syrup, canola oil and vanilla. Really stir them together–for two minutes or until your arm hurts. Then, add the flax and unmilk. Add the flour, baking powder and salt to the bowl and mix until dough forms. Here’s a tip to know if you’ve added the right amount of flour: the dough should appear wet, but isn’t sticky if you pinch off a bit. If it sticks to your fingers, add a little more flour–about 2 T. Now, add the chocolate chips, stirring to combine.

Now, make little individual dough balls about the size of a walnut, and flatten gently onto your parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake on a cookie sheet for 8-10 minutes (depending on the size of your cookie) in a 350 degree oven. I usually just make cookies in small batches, and keep the dough in the fridge. However, I’ve noticed this dough gets sorta crumbly as it gets cold, so if you want good looking cookies, I would either let it get back to room temp, or just make all the cookies at once.

But yeah, they are seriously awesome. And no fussing with cornstarch! Or tapioca starch! Hooray!

(Okay, I just realized that I posted virtually this same EXACT recipe before, but the results were completely different! How weird is that? Anyway, check it out!)

Bob’s Red Mill

Can someone be a fan girl of a mill? Then I am. I LOVE BOB’S RED MILL! I’m about to get up on my roof and proclaim it to the world.

We made it to the mill a scant 15 minutes after the first tour began, so we missed it. It’s okay, the store was totally worth it. TOTALLY.

I’ve been buying Bob’s Red Mill items for about 6 years now, since I went all organic and hippied out. But I had no idea the sheer amount of products they make, from beans to grains to nuts to whatever you can think of. And the restaurant! It has it’s own VEGETARIAN MENU. I know! I don’t have to pick and choose off of a menu meant for someone else! Yes!

I want to live in your basement, Bob’s Red Mill. I’ll even pay rent, I swear! I will, however, be eating you out of house and home. Feast your eyes on these vegan flapjacks! I will never stop saying VEGAN FLAPJACKS!

Seriously, don’t they look sexy?