God's Word for Today

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Christmas Day Sticky Bun Disaster….an epic failure and I’m not the only one out there!

Well in hindsight I think I may adopt the no new recipe’s during the holidays rule that Paula advocates. Live and learn. All I can say is that I feel a bit vindicated when I scrolled through the reviews of the recipe and found several very negative comments

Needless to say I had a a good laugh at this comment about this recipe being a fire hazard……..had I read the first comment listed below I may have thought twice about putting my family and Christmas all together in jeopardy for the sake of a sticky bun.

Copied straight from the Food Network Website: “Fire hazard.. do not make. I followed this recipe exactly.. 400 degrees for 30 minutes. 15 minutes into the baking the brown sugar and butter was scorched and the whole house was filled with smoke. If I were you I would not make this unless the oven temperature is reconsidered. A epic failure of a recipe.”

In any event I followed the direction exactly!

My first indicator that things were not going well was that the puff pastry seemed to melt back down into the butter sugar mixture in the bottom of the muffin tin. This in turn began to push the buttery sugar mixture over the edges of the muffin tin and then it began to spill over the edges of the pan onto the cookie sheet. Thankfully I had lined the cookie sheet with parchment paper. On checking the oven I noticed the edges of the parchment paper beginning to tune a very dark brown, The sugar mixture was beginning to bubble and smoke. The puff pastry did eventually begin to puff out of the muffin tins but the portion of the pastry that was still down in the muffin tin was not cooking. The tops were puffed out and crispy and golden brown and at the end of the cooking time I pulled out the muffin tin. I followed the directions of letting them sit for 5 minutes then inverting them out onto the parchment paper. Well as soon as I tiled the pan they all came tumbling out. The caramel spilled all over the place the buns began to unwind and the nuts and raisins were tossed every which way. The tops were done and the interior was raw. The sugar that had bubble out of the muffin tin was burned and stuck to the muffin tin…..yeah just what I wanted to clean up on Christmas morning.

 sticky buns 001

Now I am looking at a mess of soupy buttery raw pastry dough. I thought about just tossing it out but decide that rather than trying to put all this lovely mess back into the muffin tins I would just pop the cookie sheet back in the oven to see if the raw parts would finish baking.

We sat down to eat a leisurely brunch. The next thing I noticed was an unpleasant smell and then the kitchen began to fill with smoke. I hopped up from the table and looked in the oven to watch in horror as the sugar/butter/caramel combination was bubbling over the edges of the cookie sheet and dripping down into the bottom of my oven like an erupting volcano. The scorching hot sugar mixture was running over onto the bottom of my oven and flames where shooting out and jumping up and trying to catch the parchment paper on fires as well. At this point I am doing some serious praying that my house does not burn down on Christmas morning…….well Officer, you see it was the sticky buns……….they just burst into flames and before we knew what what happening….

So there we all are the three of us, Me, the Hubs and my son, smoke is billowing out of the oven and I am trying to decide how to get the smoking tray of smoldering sugar out of my oven without making a bigger mess. The Hubs and son are at the oven door working in tandem trying to reach in and avoid the scorching hot sugar that is sliding all over the place. They both got a bit smattered with hot buttery sugar…..NOT FUN!

Finally they were able to get the cookie sheet out of the oven and I was able to grab the box of baking soda out of the cabinet and tossed in a generous helping over the open flames that was dancing around  the bottom of my oven.

sticky buns

It was a mess y’all. I was only after the scorched, raw/burned/smoked sticky buns had been deposited in the trash that I had the after thought…..pictures! Who stops to take a picture when your kitchen is in the process of burning down? I had vision of standing outside watching my house erupt in flames….and it was all Ina’s fault!

Just what the hubs wanted to do on Christmas Day!

sticky buns 003sticky buns 002

Y’all know me, ever since this epic sticky bun failure it has been a nagging tick in the back of my mind. I even went back over to the Food Network and watched the video where she demonstrated how to make them. I thought that maybe she had used the extra large muffin pan but upon watching the video a second time it looked like a regular sized muffin pan to me! I’m not an idiot in the kitchen but I did feel somewhat vindicated when I read several very unfavorable reviews all speaking about the various flaws of this recipe!

I did not scroll through all the reviews but here is a small sampling of some of the bad reviews. There were about as many bad revies as there were good ones but I have to say I will not be making this one again, or if I do I will make some major revisions…..


“Sad to give this 1 star. Temp to hot.... burned. To much butter, to much sugar, while baking & after taking them out to cool a little, sugar turned in to rock pecan brittle. Made 2 times, don't think I'll make again so disappointed. So excited to try them, sorry Ina.”

“the cooking temperature is way toooo high...they turned out terrible!”

“This recipe is absolutely terrible! Way too much butter, and the cooking temperature was much too high! While removing them from the pan, the filling fell out of them! These we supposed to be a morning treat for my husband!”

“This recipe needs to be amended! I made these easy sticky buns according to the recipe and was very disappointed. Way too much butter as puff pastry already has layers of butter. These came out soggy with butter, had to pitch them out. I am not sure why there is a need for so much butter. Next time, I will not brush on the butter over the pastry and will use just a little butter in the bottom of each muffin cup.”

“First off, I LOVE Ina and most of her recipes, but I have to say --this one let me down.
When trying a new recipe I always follow it by the book and then down the road I may alter it. This recipe seemed nice and simple at first, smelled great while in the oven. However, I noticed when peeking in and rotating the pan during baking that they almost appeared to be floating in the butter/brown sugar in the base of the muffin tins. I thought maybe they would set up and all would be well afterward, but that was not to be. ( I do LOTS of baking and my oven is in decent shape, btw.
This recipe is in need of some serious altering so maybe I'll read through even more reviews and see if there are good tips to salvage it. Otherwise I'm sorry, this will be out of my recipe collection.


The Bug said...

Once again I find myself apologizing for laughing at your troubles, but goodness! I know if YOU can't make it then something is definitely wrong. I can't believe they haven't adjusted the recipe after all of those reviews!

A_Esteves said...

wow, those pictures scared me! lol
At least you learned to trust in other people's reviews! haha


Kim said...

Oh my! I laughed out loud reading your account :) I can understand why you didn't think of photographing the disaster, but I do think they would have made a very funny montage :)

Our daughter almost set our house on fire making sushi! We were in Argentina visiting at the time (back in '07) and we get an e-mail from her with the subject line "you never said not to set the house on fire". Oh my! You can bet we opened that e-mail pretty fast! Turns out she was trying her hand at tempera fried sushi and didn't realize it's not a good idea to leave a lid on boiling oil. When she took the lid off, flames shot up and out. The kitchen curtains were scorched, and the cabinets were covered in soot. Actually soot was everywhere in the main living area. Thankfully the church had insurance on the parsonage, and that paid for the clean-up AND re-painting of the cupboards. Now I'd planned on repainting those myself the next year before we moved to Argentina, and that saved me a lot of time and work :) So in the end it all worked out for good.

And our daughter learned her lesson about hot oil :)

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