2012/05/14

Remember (TWD Baking w/ Julia: Pecan-Free Sticky Buns)

When I was a little girl we would spend most of the summer camping.


Not your typical park your camper in the campground with people all around you camping.

Nope.

We would park the camper up at The Lake which was across The Way from my grandmother's farm. 

Down a path lined with blueberry bushes and blackberry brambles was a patch of grass.

Beyond that patch of grass was the lake.

On the other end of that patch of grass was the outhouse.


Mind you, it was a beautiful location. But to to my very young self, it was a love-hate relationship.

I loved being up at the lake.

I loved being able to roam, play on the rock wall and explore the lengths of the shore to my heart's content.

I loved the chance to be able to sit and read the eight to ten books that I had checked out of the library. (Which would be finished in few short days - which would mean another trip back into town to check out more books.)


I hated the lack of certain creature comforts. Translation: I totally hated using the outhouse in the middle of the night - a) it smelled and b) that was one heck of a creepy walk in the dark - I was absolutely convinced that a wild animal was going to get me or that a snake was hiding down in the pit of the outhouse. Terrifying, I tell you. Terrifying.

I hated, hated, hated sleeping in the bunk bed of the camper (I am not a fan of heights - especially while sleeping).

I hated the solitariness of it all.

Young Cher did not always appreciate the time away from the rest of the world. Or the beauty that surrounded her.

This was pre-cell phone. Pre-lap tops. No cable TV.

My dad would trek off to work and it would just be me and my mom. In the camper. Just the two of us.

I love my mom; but those summers could be very, very long - I am sure they were as long for her as they were for me... They probably felt twice as long for her during my teen years. She was a saint for putting up with me then.



One thing that I did love about summer and camping was the food.

Fresh fish cooked over the camp fire.

Marshmallows propped on the end of a stick and toasted over the fire until they were crackly, oozy. 


Hot dogs slightly blackened.

And the cinnamon swirl cake with the white glaze and the pecans picked up from the local store.

Oh, how I loved that swirl cake. 

I can remember sneaking the icing and nuts from the center of the pan.

And tearing into wedges of the soft yeasted dough.

Nothing said summer & camping like that cinnamon cake.

Sigh.


It has been many years since I have been camping.

And the bakery no longer makes that cake I hold so dear in my memories.

Which means that if I want that warm, tender goodness, I have to create it myself.

Tender brioche dough comes close to the texture of the cake of my memories. It's buttery goodness transports me back to days gone by.

The nuts were left behind to please the palate of a picky eater. The white glaze of the cake of yesteryear was traded out for a caramelly, brown sugar glaze. A treat for today - no camping required...




This post participates in Tuesdays with Dorie. To find the recipe, please check out the link to this week's hosts Lynn of Eat Drink Man Woman Dog Cat and Nicole of Cookies on Friday

45 comments:

  1. Your camping adventures sound like fun! And your buns look good!

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  2. I've never been much of a camper either! Your buns look great! Once again I can't post on the TwD site. Would you put up my link please? Thank you!

    http://lolalive2day.blogspot.com/2012/05/twd-pecan-sticky-buns-bwj.html

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  3. Cher, what a great story. I love to read your posts - they always make me smile. And your remark about having to leave out the pecan reminds me of one of my daughters who took a fork yesterday to dig about every piece of nut that she could detect in the depths of the sticky buns. Photos are wonderful too! Enjoy the rest of the week and thanks for fixing my little mishap there!

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  4. Beautifully done, Cher! I grew up camping across the US and Canada...my 3 sisters and I demanded the campgrounds have showers and flush toilets...tents were roughing it enough :) I enjoyed reading about your summer adventures!

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  5. I would love to try the cinnamon swirl cake - what a shame they no longer make it.

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  6. Cher.. yours turned out great!! Food has so many memories attached to it...beautiful!!:)

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  7. I can relate so much to your camping post! But I didn´t have the cake... Your buns came out delicious looking!

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  8. Lovely story... down memory lane.
    I'm so pleased you liked them - they look perfect.

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  9. What a great reminiscence! It's cool that this recipe brought back those memories. The final product looks terrific, too. Nice!

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  10. Those look sooo good. I bailed on this week. I knew I'd be the only person in the house eating these pretty babies. That's a whole lot of butter for one girl to take on. I'll make them some day when I have lots of company.

    I like the idea of camping, but in practice, it makes me miserable. I hate bugs, all of whom seem to find me delicious, the sleeping arrangement is always horrendously uncomfortable, and I could never think up anything TO DO. The curse of being a city girl, I guess.

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  11. What great memories! I've never been a camper. Post-college, my friend and I would go away for the weekend and "camp", which meant we slept in a tent (very cheap), but we always ate out. She still teases me about it. Your sticky buns look amazing. I need to make them when I have more people to share all that butter with. They are very decadent, and I hope you and the picky eater and the rest of the family enjoyed every morsel. See you Friday with another indulgence (my body can only take one a week, at most...).

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  12. Sounds like you have some fun great memories of those camping trips! Your pecan sticky buns look beautiful! Nice post!

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  13. There used to be a raccoon that lived under the out house during the winter months! I don't know why you are complaining, it was a fancy three holer, and we actually had toilet paper!!!!

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  14. Nice story, brings camping memories, but without the sticky buns. We don't know them around here. But they do taste well and I hope you will enjoy them a lot more.

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  15. I guess we've finally grown up when we can appreciate our parents more, and are waiting for our kids to do the same. Lovely tender dough and memories!

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  16. Love your post, Cher. And the buns look fabulous! :)

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  17. I loved reading this (as I do all your posts).
    Your sticky buns in the pan look like a bouquet of roses to me. Thought you'd like to know.
    I did not participate in this selection as I'm trying to lose some weight. I hope to be back and baking along soon.

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  18. They look so nice and golden without the pecans!

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  19. Nighttime visits to the outhouse were the worst part of camping for me, too. There were so many black bears around and my siblings and I were convinced that we were going to run into one sooner or later (never happened). It's amazing how camping made everything taste better. Glad these sticky buns evoked good (and questionable) memories for you.

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  20. My idea of roughing it is a hotel with no concierge or turn-down service.

    Your sticky buns look great, even without the nuts.

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  21. Never liked camping but I love food! Your buns look great!

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  22. Love the story Cher. I have very fond memories of the one time my family went camping, in Nova Scotia, Canada. I cannot wait to do it with my kids. I hope you can recreate that swirl cake one day. It sounds delicious.

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  23. Wouldn't you give your first born to return to some of those lazy summer days (with a modern toilet, of course) when time seemed to wander and each day was somewhat unplanned. Why can't we get back there even for a day or two every so often? Enjoyed the tale and your buns looked gorgeous.

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  24. I miss camping food, too... Tin foil dinners with mostly raw potatoes; instant noodles; smooshy marshmallows and hot chocolate; the campfire smell that infuses EVERYTHING... but my favorite camping meal was at a Leader's camp where one of the guys in my group was a chef. Can you say YUM?!?

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  25. I'm not a big camping fan. But I really enjoyed reading your memories. The sticky buns look so delicious!

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  26. What a great way to spend summers growing up (sans outhouse, of course)! Glad you liked this recipe. Too much butter for me - I don't think I've ever said that before!

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  27. Too funny with the camping! I am with you about the outhouse...not funny. But the fresh fish and cake, so yummy! Your buns look amazing, I just want to dive right in and make them again!

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  28. Cher,
    I enjoyed your memories. I have a friend who used to camp with her boys and would take along a blow dryer and oscillating fan. Sometimes a toaster. She only went to campgrounds with electrical outlets. Such style.
    -Lisa

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  29. What a sweet walk down memory lane . Your buns came out beautifully.

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  30. Love your story. I'm not much of a camper either. Which is a problem since my husband loves it. I always end up enjoying the solitude, quiet and a cup of coffee around the campfire but despise the bugs, tent and hike to the bathroom. Oh and the numerous wild animals I'm convinced are just waiting to attack me. ;)

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  31. These look beautiful (I skipped pecans too!)

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  32. Beautiful! Funny how food can trigger memories.

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  33. Oh, goodness ... camping. 5th graders in my school district had to go to Camp Kern. I'll never forget the bus ride there. One of the chaperones went on and on about poisonous spiders hiding in the toilets and ticks in the woods. Completely traumatized. Haven't been camping since. I love nature, but have to be near modern facilities. Anyhoo ... it sounds weird to say, but I like your sticky buns. (Fortunately, bakers know how to take that. ;)

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  34. If I could get sticky buns...I would sign up for a camping trip, at least for the breakfast part of it;-)

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  35. With these buns, I am ready for a biiig sacrifice and use the outdoor toilet!

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  36. I think your sticky buns look perfect, even without the pecans!

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  37. Another beautiful memory post, Cher. Isn't it wonderful how food can just take us back to those places? Your sticky buns look perfect and with or without nuts I bet were just delicious.

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  38. Beautiful memory! :) I was right there with you at the lake! Hot butter is not fun though.

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  39. Loved the story and the sticky buns!

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  40. it's funny, when i was a kid i always complained about solitary, boring vacations where the main activity was sitting and reading by the lake, but now that sounds incredible to me. i would love to have the time to do nothing...glad you enjoyed the rolls, they were great (and very much like cake!)

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