Combine 2 cups of the all purpose flour, the white sugar, salt and quick-rise yeast in a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, fitted with the kneading hook. In a small saucepan or in the microwave, heat the water, milk and 2 Tbsp. butter until just warm to the touch (about 105F). Stir the milk mixture into the dry ingredients, then add egg and mix in until well combined, scraping down the bowl as needed to combine the flour. Start adding more flour, in small increments, mixing in well before adding more. Continue adding flour until you have a moist dough that wraps around the hook and cleans the bowl of the mixer. Remove dough to a lightly floured surface and knead briefly. Form into a ball, cover with a clean tea towel and let rest 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the filling by stirring together the brown sugar and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Add the 6 Tbsp. cold butter, cut into cubes. Using your fingertips or a pastry blender, rub or cut the butter into the brown sugar until you have an even, crumbly mixture. Place 1/3 cup of brown sugar mixture into the bottom of a greased 9-inch x 5-inch loaf pan. Add 2 Tbsp. water and stir together to make a sauce (may be a bit lumpy, but not to worry. The lumps are butter and that will melt). Place the halved cherries and pecans (good side down) on top of the sauce.
Once dough has rested, roll into a 9 x 14-inch rectangle. Spread the remaining brown sugar/cinnamon mixture evenly over the dough, then sprinkle raisins on top, if using. Starting from the long side, roll up jelly roll style, trying not to pull or stretch the dough too much as you roll (aim for a gentle push. This prevents the dough spirals from exploding upwards when they cook). Pinch the seam together and place on a cutting board, seam side down. Cut into 8 even slices (*I like to cut 1/2-inch off each end and then measure the remaining, divide by 8 and then pre-mark the dough lightly with the edge of the knife. You could wing it, but that never works out well for me well when I do that.). The slices will probably be 1 1/2-inches wide-ish. Place the slices cut side up in the pan. Cover the pan with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for about 40 minutes, or until doubled.
Preheat oven to 350° F.
Once the rolls have doubled, place loaf pan on top of a baking sheet (to catch any bubble-overs) and bake for about 35 minutes. Check at the 30 minute mark and cover loosely with foil the top is at risk of getting too brown. Remove from oven. Allow to rest in the pan for 5 minutes. Run a knife around the edges, then invert onto a cooling rack with a piece of parchment paper on top, to catch the syrup. To avoid a gummy dough, allow to cool almost completely before pulling off that first piece (I know it's hard to resist, but remember you can always warm it back up a bit with a few seconds in the microwave later).
*If you only have active dry or regular instant yeast, simply extend the first rise to 30-45 minutes, or until the dough doubles in size. For active dry yeast, you will need to proof the yeast in water to activate it. Proof in 1/4 cup of lukewarm water and reduce the water in the recipe (that is added to the milk) to 1/4 cup.You can make these as a round of pull apart buns, by cutting into 12 slices instead of 8 and placing into a 9-inch round cake pan instead.These buns freeze beautifully!Be sure to read the Ingredient and Cook's Notes above the recipe card, for more tips on making this recipe.