Caroline Craig's Squash Sticky Buns

FOR THE DOUGH:

Ingredients

1/2 cup mashed, cooked winter squash, such as butternut, acorn, or kabocha (or substitute canned squash or pumpkin; see "Note," above)
1 cup hot tap water
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1-1/4 teaspoons plus 1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast, divided
1-1/4 teaspoons table salt
2 tablespoons salted butter, melted
2–4 cups all-purpose flour (see "Note," above), divided, plus extra for work surface
1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Instructions

First, make the dough; Put squash and hot water into the bowl of a standing mixer or the jar of a blender, and beat (or whirl) until smooth. If you're using a blender, transfer mixture to a large bowl; otherwise, leave it in your mixer's bowl. Add sugar and 1-½ teaspoons yeast; then stir and let mixture sit 10 minutes (this will activate the yeast). Add salt, melted butter, and remaining ½ teaspoon yeast. Whisk until blended.

Beat in 2 cups flour. Keep adding flour, ¼ cup at a time, until dough becomes workable without being too sticky to touch; the amount you'll need will depend on the type of squash (and flour) you use. Don't worry–you'll be able to feel it when the dough ceases to be too sticky. If you're mixing by hand, turn dough out onto a well-floured surface to work in the additional flour. If you're using a standing mixer, switch to the dough-hook attachment.

Continue kneading until dough springs back to the touch and feels very smooth, 5 to 10 minutes. Then coat dough with oil, return it to the bowl, cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap, and place in a warm spot until doubled in size, 1 to 1-½ hours.

While dough is rising, butter a 9x9-inch baking dish or a standard 12-cup muffin tin. Set aside.

FOR THE TOPPING:

FOR THE FILLING:

Yield: 

9-12 buns

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