I love Southern-style Sunday family brunches. These sweet biscuit-like treats are a centerpiece of the meal. From Callie’s Biscuits and Southern Traditions.
These stickies are one of my mother’s many specialties and an essential element of our Sunday brunches. She never writes anything down, so this is my best interpretation of her recipe. Forget any notions of oversized shopping mall cinnamon rolls—these bites are sweet but not too sweet, with the texture of a biscuit. And on the rare occasion when I may have been overserved a cocktail or two, these stickies are what I crave when I wake up the next morning. They taste good any time of day for any occasion, but a little bit of Sunday morning family “conversation” does seem to bring out their sweetness even more.
Makes 10 to 12 stickies
2 cups self-rising flour (White Lily preferred), plus more for dusting
1⁄3 cup white sugar
1⁄3 cup packed light brown sugar
14 tablespoons (1. sticks) butter:
8 tablespoons cut in cubes, at room temperature, and 6 tablespoons melted
1/4 cup cream cheese, at room temperature
3/4 cup whole buttermilk, plus 1 tablespoon if needed (may substitute low-fat buttermilk)
1 cup chopped pecans
1⁄. cup white sugar
1⁄. cup packed light brown sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and flour the paper generously.
2 Measure the flour into a large bowl. Mix in the white and brown sugars. Incorporate the cubed butter and then the cream cheese into the flour, using your fingers to “cut in” the butter and cheese until the mixture resembles chunky cottage cheese.
3 Make a well in the center. Pour in the buttermilk and, using your hands or a small rubber spatula, mix the flour into the buttermilk. The dough will be wet and messy.
4 Sprinkle flour on the dough and turn the dough onto the parchment paper. Press into a rectangle. Flour the top generously and roll out to a 1/4-inch thickness into a rectangle. Use a pastry brush to brush excess flour from the dough.
5 Brush the surface with 4 tablespoons of the melted butter.
6 Make the topping: Stir together all the ingredients. Sprinkle two-thirds of the topping over the dough.
7 With well-floured hands, working from a long side, begin rolling the dough into a log, using the parchment paper to lift and roll the dough. Smooth the dough, and keeping it on the baking sheet, freeze for 45 minutes.
8 While the log is freezing, preheat the oven to 500°F. Put parchment paper on a baking sheet. If using a cast-iron skillet, no greasing or parchment paper is necessary.
9 Trim the ends of the log and cut in ó-inch-thick slices, using a serrated knife. (Flouring the knife will help cut through the dough.)
10 Lay the stickies flat on the prepared pan. Brush with the remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter and sprinkle with the remaining topping.
11 Place in the oven and immediately reduce the oven temperature to 400°F. Bake 16 to 18 minutes, rotating the pan once, until golden brown.
12 Serve warm.
Note: You can make, shape, and top these the night before and keep in the fridge to bake in the morning.