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New York Bakery Style Crumb Buns

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Delicious tender rolls , slightly sweet with a hint of cinnamon and lots of Crumbs!
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I had never heard of or seen crumb buns before.  I came across this recipe on and had to try it. The person that posted the recipe said these are rolls that you would have found in an old New York Style Bakery. They were so different from other rolls like sticky buns that I’ve made. There’s nothing sticky bun-ish about them. After the dough is made and has risen once, punch the dough down and divide it into two pieces.  Roll the dough into a 14×8 inch rectangle.

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Instead of making a filling like you would for sticky buns, you make crumbs and spread them on the rolled out dough after you brush it with melted butter. The dough isn’t even rolled up, you take 1/3 of the dough and bring it over to the center of the rectangle, brush the top of the piece that you folded over with melted butter and then fold it one more time.

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Press on the dough slightly to make the layers adhere, seal the edges and the ends of the dough and cut into 7 slices that are 2 inches long. Yes Kids, there’s only 6 slices, have I mentioned I’m measurement impaired? It all worked out, I had 8 slices when I cut the second piece.  Repeat with the second piece of dough. The dough is absolutely wonderful, there’s lots of butter in it to make it very tender.  The rolls are put in a buttered 13×9 inch pan with half and inch between them.  They aren’t suppose to be touching but that was kind of hard to do with 14 rolls in the pan.  Next time I’ll use two smaller pans.

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The reserved crumb is sprinkled all over the top of the rolls and in between the rolls.  The dough rises for 30 minutes or till the rolls are puffy.  The recipe didn’t say …until doubled in size, just puffy.  Bake for 40 minutes in a 325 degree oven or until golden brown on top.

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Let the buns cool for ten minutes in the pan then run a sharp knife around the edges of the pan. I put a cookie sheet over top of the buns, turned the bun pan upside down and they came out beautifully.  Let cool on a wire rack.  When your ready to serve them, sprinkle generously with powdered sugar.  These rolls have a hint of cinnamon flavor and are slightly sweet, they get most of they’re sweetness from the powdered sugar you sprinkle on top.  They are wonderful warm with a little butter spread on them! The directions for the recipe are long.

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10 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

For The Dough

1/2 cup water ( 105 DEGREES F.)
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (1 package)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
3/4 cup whole milk
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut in to chunks plus additional for the bowl
3 large eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
3 1/2-4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
confectioners’ sugar, for dusting


*Prepare the yeast dough.
Place water in the bowl of your electric mixer, sprinkle with yeast and add sugar, stir until yeast is dissolved.
Set aside for 10 minutes or until foam and a few bubbles start to form on the surface.
In a small saucepan, over low heat, warm the milk and butter until butter just melts.
Temperature of the mixture should not be more than 105°F Add the 105°F butter/milk into the proofed yeast mixture, stir.
Add eggs and vanilla and mix to combine.
Add 1 cup of all purpose flour, the cake flour, 1/4 cup of sugar and the 1/2 tsp salt.
Beat on low speed until smooth and well blended.
Slowly add the remaining flour in 1/4 cup increments until the dough forms a smooth, soft (not
sticky) ball that comes away from the sides of the bowl.
It may be necessary to do this last step by hand with a wooden spoon if your mixer is not a heavy duty model.
If using the heavy duty mixer, install the dough hook and mix until the dough is smooth, about 3 minutes.
OR, knead by hand for about 5 minutes on a lightly floured board, it should be smooth and will no longer stick to the work surface.
Transfer the dough to a bowl that’s been well buttered, flip it around a couple times to coat all sides of the ball.
Cover with plastic wrap and set aside in a warm place to rise until it’s about doubled in size.
It can also rise overnight in the fridge, but must be allowed to come to room temperature before making crumb buns Using your fist gently punch down the dough to deflate.
The dough is now ready to form into buns.
**For the Crumbs.
While your dough is rising, about 20 minutes before it’s done, prepare the crumbs.
In a large bowl with an electric mixer on low speed beat the butter, sugars, salt and vanilla until the mixture is well combined, about one
Add the flour and sprinkle the cinnamon over the top.
Combine until mixture just forms a crust.
**For the buns.
After punching down the dough, divide it into two portions, cover.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out one portion of the dough until it forms a 8×14 inch rectangle about 1/4-inch thick.
Brush the dough lightly with some melted butter and evenly sprinkle 3/4 cup of the crumb mixture over the buttered surface.
Starting at the long side furtherest away from you fold 1/3rd of the dough over on itself, brush this surface with melted butter, fold the double layer of dough over again to cover the remaining 1/3rd of the dough that’s closest to you.
You will now have a 3 layered dough that’s 14 inches long and 2 1/2 inches wide.
Press gently on the dough so the layers adhere and pinch around the edges to seal.
Cut the rectangle into 7, 2-inch portions.
Repeat with second half of dough.

Butter a 9x13x2-inch baking pan, place the buns 1/2 inch apart in the pan.

Brush the top of each bun with melted butter and sprinkle the remaining crumbs over the mixture allowing some to fall between.
Gently press the crumbs into the top of the buns.
Cover pan with plastic wrap and set in a warm place to rise for about 30 minutes or unit the dough looks puffy.
The buns should NOT be touching.
Preheat oven to 325°F.
Remove plastic wrap from the buns and bake for about 40 minutes, until the tops are golden brown and the crumbs are slightly firm.
The buns will have spread into one large pull apart pan of buns.
Allow to cool on a rack for about 10 minutes.
With a small sharp knife cut along the sides of the pan and carefully remove buns so as not to disturb crumbs.
Transfer to a rack to cool, just before serving dust with confectioners sugar.
Cover and store at room temperature for 2 days.
To freshen wrap in foil and heat in a 300°F oven until just warm or microwave about 30 seconds.

How to make cake flour…  To make 1 cup cake flour, measure out 1 cup all purpose flour.  Sift once, remove 2 Tablespoons of the flour, put back in flour bin.  Replace the 2 Tablespoons of flour with 2 Tablespoons of corn starch.  Sift the flour and cornstarch together 5 times to incorporate the cornstarch well into the flour and make it soft.  Measure out the amount of cake flour you need and put the rest back in the flour bin.

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