I didn’t see this one coming. I had no plans to post this recipe, but I was curious about these baby cinnamon rolls from one of my all-time favorites, Alice Medrich. They are so ridiculously good, I could not not include them.
How good are they?
They are so good I almost made them two days in a row. For myself! Someone, help!
They start with this genius biscuit dough that gets rolled around some butter and cinnamon sugar. It all melts and caramelizes in the pan when they bake. You can make 3 variations, which are shown in the photos: pecan, plain and one with a cream cheese glaze (a little cream cheese, butter, confectioner’s sugar and milk). I am sure you might think of others. They are unbearably cute and it is fun to pretend you are a giant eating a normal-sized cinnamon roll while eating one. Try it. It’s funny.
These obviously aren’t your normal holiday cookie. But how awesome would these be for a brunch dessert?! Imagine presenting a plate of miniature breakfast pastries to your guests. If you have friends or family staying with you for the holidays, these are perfect!
The recipe said these should be eaten on the day they are baked. I ate some the next day and they still tasted really good. None survived to the third day, so I can’t advise you there.
Sticky Pecan Bites (adapted from Chewy, Gooey, Crispy, Crunchy... by Alice Medrich)
- Pecan Halves
- 1 cup (4.5 oz) unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt, plus additional for sprinkling
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 cup (3.5 oz) packed brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, very soft
Preheat the oven to 400°F. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven. Lightly grease a mini muffin pan (with 24 cups or 2-12 cups)
Place a pecan half in some (or all) of the muffin cups, top side down. Combine the flour, baking powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl and mix together thoroughly with a whisk or fork. Make a well in the center. Pour the cream into the well. Use a rubber spatula to fold and stir the flour mixture and cream together just until the dry ingredients are entirely moistened and a soft dough has formed; it should not look perfectly smooth. Let the dough rest for 2 to 3 minutes to firm up. Meanwhile, mix together the sugar and cinnamon.
On a lightly floured surface, with a rolling pin, roll the dough to a rectangle 12 by 7 inches and 1/4-inch thick. Spread the dough with the soft butter, and sprinkle with a generous pinch of salt (I like using kosher or sea salt) and the brown sugar. Starting at one long side, roll the dough tightly. Cut the dough crosswise into 24 equal pieces. Place each piece in a muffin cup, cup side up.
Bake for 12-15 minutes, until well browned. Immediately turn the cookies out onto a sheet of parchment on a heatproof surface. Serve on the day you make them, or asap.