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The hardest part on the tea ring is to keep the ends from tapering. When I bring the two ends together I pretend I'm putting a vacuum hose together. You know, when a smaller piece goes inside a large piece? Well, anyway I take the ends and actually place one inside the other. Then I work the dough smooth with my fingers.
To make sure the ring looks good when it's baked be sure to roll it thin. One day I left mine too thick and the center didn't look to spiffy when it baked. You can also flip the dough over and work the bottom seam shut if you desire.
One final tip, Make the ring and freeze it immediately. Twelve hours before you want to bake set it out and cover it tightly, yet loosely with saran wrap. In the morning you'll have a tea ring that's ready to bake, drizzle and serve!
The filling: I take the brown sugar, cinnamon, and nuts and cut them into the cold butter in my mixer.