FOR DOUGH: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine warm milk and 1 teaspoon sugar. Gently stir in yeast, and let rest for 5 minutes. Gently stir in ½ cup Swans Down® Cake Flour, and let rest for 10 minutes. In a medium bowl, whisk together all-purpose flour, salt, remaining 1 cup Swans Down® Cake Flour, and remaining 1/3 cup sugar.
WITH mixer on low speed, gradually add flour mixture to milk mixture, beating just until combined. Add eggs and butter; beat just until a dough forms. Switch to the dough hook attachment. Beat at medium speed until dough is smooth and elastic, 5 to 7 minutes. Spray a large bowl with cooking spray. Place dough in bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (75°) until doubled in size, about 1½ hours.
SPRAY a 3-quart baking dish with cooking spray.
LIGHTLY punch down dough. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a 12-inch square. Cut dough into 1½-inch pieces, and roll into balls.
FOR SUGAR-SPICE MIXTURE: In a medium bowl, place melted butter. In another medium bowl, whisk together brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Dip dough balls in melted butter; roll balls in sugar mixture, tossing to coat. Place one layer of sugared dough balls ½ inch apart in prepared pan. Sprinkle with ¼ cup pecans. Top with remaining sugared dough balls, and sprinkle with remaining ¼ cup pecans. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (75°) until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
PREHEAT oven to 350°.
FOR EGG MIXTURE: In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, cream, sugar, vanilla, and salt. Spoon egg mixture over dough balls, coating completely.
BAKE until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Cover with foil and bake 15 minutes more. Let cool in pan for 15 minutes.
FOR GLAZE: In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese with a mixer at medium-high speed until creamy. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar, beating until smooth. Stir in milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until desired consistency is reached. Stir in vanilla. Spoon glaze over casserole. Garnish with pecans, if desired.
Makes 10 to 12 servings