Get Your Homemade Honey Buns Here!


Honey buns, from that store thing.
That’s two different brands of store-bought honey buns. Honey buns are sort of like flat sweet rolls with an iced honey drizzle. You could bake them (try 350-degrees, until nicely browned) but they’re truly more of a fried pastry in texture, like a yeast doughnut. I started analyzing this popular little treat recently to figure out the best method for making them at home–because I have a friend who really loves them–and here’s what I came up with.

How to make Honey Buns:

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons (or two packages) yeast
3/4 cup milk
1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 eggs

Combine 1 1/2 cups of the flour with the yeast in a large bowl. In a small pan, heat milk, honey, butter, and salt on low. Pour warm milk/butter mixture into the bowl with the flour and yeast. Add eggs. Using an electric mixer, mix on low for 30 seconds then on high for 3 minutes. Stir in the next cup and a half of flour with a spoon as much as possible, then begin kneading. Add a little more flour if necessary to make a soft but not sticky dough. Let rise in a covered, greased bowl for about an hour.
Punch dough down and turn out onto a floured surface. Roll out to a half-inch thickness. Cover and let rise till nice and light, about another hour. Roll the dough out flat and fairly thickly on a floured surface then start rolling it up.
You’re going to be slicing the honey buns pretty thinly, and you want the spirals inside to be thick.
Put the roll in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes to firm up. You could do this ahead of time and have the roll ready to slice and fry in the morning!
Make 12 thin slices and then flatten the rolls a little extra with your hand or a rolling pin.
Let sliced buns rise for about 30 minutes. Fry in medium-hot oil one to two minutes per side. (If your oil is too hot, your buns will brown too quickly on the outside and not be done inside–be sure your oil temperature will allow you to fry one full minute per side. Oil temperature should be around 365-degrees.)
Now you’re in fresh honey bun heaven! Drain and cool, then glaze!

Powdered Sugar Honey Glaze:

3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon honey
1 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar
hot water
nutmeg (optional)

In a small saucepan, melt butter with the honey. Remove from heat. Add sifted powdered sugar and hot water, stirring well. Add just enough hot water to bring glaze to drizzling consistency. I added about 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg. It seemed to make the taste of the glaze just right. You can leave that out if you want. Glaze lavishly.
Then eat at least four before you even sit down.

If you’re like me.

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Homestyle Fast Food Big Mac


We all have our occasional indulgences. Since I’m known for cooking from scratch, sometimes I get asked what I do for an indulgence, if I’m not going to cook. I’ve been asked this question several different times when I’ve been interviewed. My answer is always the same.

Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, and onions, on a sesame seed bun.

Okay, I just say Big Mac.

I hardly ever pick up fast food, but when I do, it’s almost always a Big Mac. And apparently it’s one of the most popular burgers in the world, so I know I’m not alone. But the last time I picked one up, it occurred to me that aside from the indulgence of not cooking, it really–like just about anything else–could be made much tastier at home.

And it could even be made FAST. If you take the time you spend waiting in line at the drive-thru, plus driving back and forth, and then coming home to a cold Big Mac, you could make it in the same amount of time (or less) and have a hot one.

Now, I’m going to say upfront that this is not about making a totally from scratch Big Mac. This is a homestyle fast food Big Mac. Because generally, if I pick one up, it’s because I’m HUNGRY and BUSY. There’s a time to make the buns and everything else from scratch including shooting a deer in the woods and grinding your own meat for the patty. This is not that time. This is the time you want a tasty meal and you want it quick and you’re going to spare yourself the oddly bland flat little meat patties that you find on a Big Mac at the burger joint. We’re still indulging ourselves here, after all. So indulge in some store-bought sesame seed buns, even in some pre-shaped beef patties from the butcher.

What all goes on a Big Mac? We have the list! Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, and onions, on a sesame seed bun. The big deal is about the special sauce. You can make your own homemade special sauce. (Go ahead, google it.) I considered it, then decided against it as it was in opposition to my goal of creating a FAST Big Mac at home. The special sauce tastes like Thousand Island dressing. But it’s not. Thousand Island dressing is made with a ketchup base, and McDonald’s special sauce is made with a mustard base. However, it really does taste like Thousand Island dressing, so I decided not to re-invent the wheel. I just want a fast Big Mac at home, with better meat and better everything. And I really can’t tell the difference taste-wise between Thousand Island dressing and Big Mac special sauce. If you miss the mustard, Yum Yum Steak Sauce is made with a mustard base and if you mix it together with Thousand Island dressing, it tastes even more like Big Mac special sauce, so that’s my tip if you need some mustard flavoring.

“Real” Big Mac, the last time I bought one:
Inside the “real” Big Mac:
Now gather your ingredients, sizzle your patties, and put your homemade Big Mac together. Two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, and onions, on a sesame seed bun.

Inside the homemade Big Mac:
You might notice that my homestyle fast food Big Mac is quite a bit taller than a “real” Big Mac. I think the homemade Big Mac is much more worthy of the “Big” in Big Mac! I also don’t like dry buns so I put mayonnaise on them, where they leave them dry at the burger joint. I also placed my cheese on top of the bottom beef patty instead of under it. (I just think under is weird.)
I hope you’re hungry.

From now on, my favorite indulgence is going to be making a Big Mac at home…..with two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, and onions, on a sesame seed bun!

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