1/3 cup milk
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup warm water (105 to 115ºF)
1 pkg active dry yeast
2 1/2 cups unsifted all purpose flour
1/2 cup Butter, softened, and divided
3/4 cup Light brown sugar, divided
1/2 cup pecans (optional)
1/2 cup raisins
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
In small pan, heat milk until bubbles form around edge of pan; remove from heat. Add granulated sugar, salt, and 1/4 cup butter; stir to melt butter. Cool to lukewarm.
Check temperature of water with thermometer (I usually just use the hottest tap water.) Sprinkle yeast over water in large bowl; stir to dissolve. Stir in lukewarm milk mixture. Add the egg and 2 cups of flour; beat with mixer until smooth. Add remaining 1/2 cup flour; mix with hand until dough is smooth and leaves the side of the bowl.
Place dough onto lightly floured surface. Knead until dough is smooth and blisters appear. Place in lightly greased bowl; turn to bring up greased side. Cover with towel; let rise in warm place (85 ºF), free from drafts, until double--1 to 1 1/2 hours.
Make filling: In small bowl, cream 1/4 cup butter with 1/4 cup light brown sugar. Spread on bottom and sides of 9 x 9 inch square pan. Sprinkle with pecans.
Roll dough onto a lightly floured surface into a 16 x 12 inch rectangle. Spread dough with 1/4 cup soft butter; sprinkle with 1/2 cup brown sugar, raisins, and cinnamon. Roll dough up from long side, jelly-roll fashion; pinch edge to seal. Cut crosswise into 12 pieces. Place cut side down in pan on top of pecans.
Let rise, covered, in warm place (85ºF), free from drafts--1 to 1 1/2 hours, until doubled (rises to top of pan). Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375ºF. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden. Invert on plate; let stand 1 minute; remove from pan. Serve warm!