For the dough:
- 1 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon warm water (110-115F)
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into cubes
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 1/2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon plus 1 pinch salt
- 2 tablespoons nonfat dry milk powder
- 1/4 cup plain instant mashed potato flakes
For the glaze:
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
For the filling:
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
- In a small bowl, whisk yeast with 1 tablespoon warm water and a pinch of sugar. Let mixture stand 15 minutes until foamy and slightly thickened.
- To a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, add remaining 1/2 cup warm water, flour, butter, sugar, salt, nonfat dry milk powder and instant mashed potato flakes. Add foamy yeast mixture. With a wooden spoon or dough hook attachment, stir ingredients on low speed just until a dough forms. If kneading by hand, turn dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead by hand 8-10 minutes until dough is smooth, soft and elastic. If kneading with a stand mixer, knead dough with dough hook on medium speed 5-7 minutes until dough pulls away from sides of bowl and is smooth, soft and elastic.
- Shape dough into a ball and place in a lightly greased large bowl; turn once to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place 1-2 hours until doubled.
- When dough is nearly doubled, make the glaze: In a small measuring cup, whisk maple syrup and butter until well combined. Pour mixture into greased 9-inch round cake pan. Top evenly with brown sugar and pecans.
- Punch down risen dough in bowl; turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Press dough into an 8×6-inch rectangle. In a small bowl, whisk the Filling ingredients until well combined. Sprinkle filling evenly over dough. Starting from one long end, tightly roll up the dough into a log. Use a sharp serrated knife to cut log into 8 equal pieces. Carefully transfer buns to cake pan, spacing evenly. Whatever filling falls out of the buns, sprinkle over the tops once placed. Cover cake pan with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place 45 minutes to 1 hour until buns are just touching.*
- Heat oven to 350F. Uncover cake pan; bake buns 15 minutes. Tent pan lightly with foil, then bake 10-12 minutes until buns are baked through (an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of one bun should read 190F). Remove buns from oven. Wearing oven mitts, immediately turn buns out onto a cooling rack or parchment paper-covered sheet pan to cool. Spoon any remaining glaze from cake pan on top of warm buns.
- Store leftover buns in an airtight container at room temperature up to 1-2 days.
- *To make these OVERNIGHT: Shape the buns, place them in the pan with the glaze, cover the pan tightly with plastic wrap, then immediately place them in the refrigerator (don’t let them rise a second time!). Store the buns in the fridge overnight. In the morning, let the buns sit at room temperature (still covered) 1 hour. Bake them at 350F 35-37 minutes, tenting with foil halfway through, until buns are golden brown and filling is bubbly.