Did ya’ll have a grandma that made you monkey bread?
I always asked her to, but she made cinnamon rolls out of a can instead.
As a kid, I just wanted to be one of those 99 monkeys jumping on a bed. And I read about monkey bread, or had it at a friend’s house, or saw it on tv…. I forget. But somehow, I learned about it, and wanted it.
I’ve seen lots and lots of recipes for monkey bread over the years. Although they look yummy in their glistening bundt pans, let’s be honest. I was too lazy.
And then I saw this recipe on Sweet Tooth.
It was really easy! I was feeling extra motivated one Saturday morning, and it didn’t take a whole lot of time. I also finally made use of my silicone muffin “tin,” and it worked great; they popped right out!
I highly recommend ya’ll go out and buy one.
The light texture of these is reminiscent of a biscuit or scone, and the fact that they’re drenched in butter and sugar only makes me feel slightly guilty while they emerge out of the oven with a crunchy topping and soft, pull-apart interior.
How’d you like THAT run-on sentence?
Ya’ll feelin’ monkey-y?
Start with a large bowl, add in your flour, baking powder, salt, and 3 T of white sugar.
Then we’re going to cut in our first stick of butter.
Ohhhhh, stop you’re whining. I know I’m always lecturing about cutting in your butter.
Now, I always freeze my butter because I’m a good thrifty girl who buys it in bulk when it’s on sale. And when I mean bulk, I mean my mother has a stand-up freezer with an entire shelf dedicated to butter and chocolate chips.
It’s how life should be.
Anyways, I always freeze it, so when I ready to bake, I cut it into cubes, so it softens quicker.
You still want your butter cold. Just, usable. You know, to cut.
Then get your pastry cutter, or fork, or food processor. Girl, I’m tellin’ you, that food processor works great and it’s fast, but this is so much easier to wash.
So, get to cuttin’. When you cut in the butter, you’re essentially making little niblets of cold butter. When it bakes, the butter melts, and releases steam, and creates a “pocket.” Which is why we have nice, fluffy biscuits.
As long as you don’t overmix.
Science class is now dismissed. Papers due Thursday everyone.
Look, see how we broke up our butter?
Resembles coarse cornmeal.
I think above said statement will be on my tombstone.
Now pour in your buttermilk.
If you’re out of buttermilk, use regular milk with a tablespoon (per cup) of vinegar added. Let sit ten minutes, until it curdles. Yummy.
Aren’t I a wealth of information today?
Please ignore the scar on my wrist, and the fact that it looks like I have man arms in this picture.
~ The scar was from a “fender bender.” Another story for another day.
Now you’re going to stir quickly and gently, with a fork, until the mixture just comes together. You might need a smidge more of buttermilk. I don’t know why, but I always do.
I can still hear my mother now, “Hurry, you need to work quickly Katie!”
“I am Mom!”
I usually sorta clump it together with my hands at the end. And make sure there’s no flour hiding at the bottom of the bowl.
Alright! We’ve got our donut biscuit muffin dough ready, now it’s on to the sin-free dipping stations!
At our first station, you’ll see 4 tablespoons of butter, and 3 tablespoons of maple syrup. Melt that glorious highly caloric concoction for roughly 40 seconds in the microwave.
~ It smells like French Toast ~
At our second station, you’ll notice white and brown sugar, and a wealth of cinnamon.
You over there in the green, mix that up.
Please keep your hands and legs inside the vehicle at all times.
Ready for the FUUUUNN????
This is where the kids can help.
As long as you don’t mind wiping melted butter off the walls and your feet sticking to the floor for weeks.
I’m a teacher, I’m used to it.
Take spoonfuls of dough, dip it in the butter….
Then into the sugar/cinnamon mixture….
It’s like a churro!
Then plop it in your new *smile* red Wilton silicone muffin “tin.”
Continue this process. I ended up with about 4 dough balls in each tin.
Also take a moment to notice I was a little overambitious with my sugar mixture, and ran out at the end.
My last row of dough balls are bald.
Oh well. Still delicious.
Pop ’em in the oven, and keep your monkeys busy while they bake!
If you’d like, you can also make a powdered sugar glaze to pour over the hot suckers, but I was feeling the sugar comatose already, so I skipped the glaze.
Look at how pretty!
No, I did *not* eat all three monkey bread muffins after taking this picture…
But my husband did!
Now get back to monkeyin’ around.
~Peace, Love, and Monkeys
Monkey Bread Muffins
Yield: 12 muffins
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
2 cups flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup buttermilk
1-1/2 sticks unsalted butter, chilled
3 tbsp maple syrup
1/3 cup white sugar, plus 3 tablespoons
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
In a large bowl, mix your flour, baking powder, salt, and 3 tablespoons sugar. Using a pastry cutter, fork, or food processor, cut in 1 stick of butter (8 tablespoons). Add buttermilk, and stir with a fork until just combined.
In a separate bowl, melt 4 tablespoons of butter and 3 tablespoons of maple syrup.
In a third bowl, mix 1/3 cup white sugar, 1/3 cup brown sugar, and 1 tablespoon brown sugar.
Using a spoon, make rough balls from the biscuit dough. Roll it through the butter, then roll it through sugar mixture. Place dough balls into a greased muffin tin. After repeating this process with all the dough, lightly press down the balls into the muffin tin.
Place a tent of foil over the muffins, and bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, or until golden brown. You may want to remove the tent for the last few minutes of baking. Also optional would be making a powdered sugar glaze to drizzle over the top of your monkey bread muffins.
Makes 12 monkey muffins.