Friday, February 10, 2012
Braided Danish Coffee Cake
I couldn't shake the coffee cake. Totally, honest truth...are you ready for this...I dreamed about it. I know, its sad. But it happened.
If you are like me, you are probably, right now, thinking, blah blah blah, danish, what? Get to it, girl! I hate reading through super long blog posts that recap every random thing that wanders through the blogger's mind, completely irrelevant to the blog post, or any kind of food at all, finally winding back to the recipe, that doesn't actually look as good as it first sounded....am I right? And here I am, doing that very thing right now. Except this is about food. And my journey into pastry-ville.
So, needless to say,
I can't usually spend a very large amount of time, uninhibited, in the kitchen. Lucky for me, and you, this recipe doesn't really require that.
Keep in mind, as you view my pictures, that this is the very first time I made this. And it looks pretty good. I would say it is a great pastry to get started on!
Braided Danish Coffee Cake
From The Art and Soul of Baking
For the dough:
NOTE: This will make enough dough for four recipes. I made all four. (Don't judge, I took them to other people) I would probably make one or two, and freeze the other two.
This is also called the dough block, or détrempe, (deh tramp)
1 teaspoon plus 2 tablespoons, sugar
4 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 large cold eggs
3/4 cup milk
3 1/2 cups flour
For the butter block, or beurrage (Bew-RAJ)
3 sticks block unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup flour
Make the dough block: Pour the warm milk into a small bowl and whisk in 1 teaspoon of the sugar. Whisk in the yeast and set aside for 10 minutes, or until the yeast is activated and the mixture is bubbling.
In the bowl of the stand mixer, whisk together the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar, the eggs, and the cold milk. Whisk the yeast mixture into the egg mixture. In a separate, medium bowl, whisk together the flour and salt until well blended. Add the flour mixture to the egg mixture, attach the dough hook and mix on low speed for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, until the liquid is absorbed and has formed a very rough mass. Dust a work surface lightly with flour and turn the dough out onto it. Knead the the dough briefly to bring it together. Don't overwork the dough. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 to 60 minutes.
Use a letter fold to encase the butter: Fold the empty bottom third up over the center third of the dough. Then fold the top third down over the center Pinch together the seams along the bottom and sides of the dough. Roll your rolling pin across the top of the dough briefly and gently 3 or 4 times.
Remove the dough, dust with flour, and roll into a 20 by 12-inch rectangle. Brush any flour from the surface of the dough. Fold using the letter-fold method again. Using 1/4 of the recipe, roll out into an 8 by 12-inch rectangle. Cut a piece of parchment large enough to fit the baking sheet, transfer the dough to the paper. Mark a 2-inch-wide strip down the center of the dough, from top to bottom. Place filling (see below). On either side of the filling, make diagonal cuts int eh dough, 3 inches long and 1 inch apart. Be sure there are the same number of cuts on each side of the dough. Braid the dough by crossing alternating strips of dough
over the filling from the right and left, working from the top down. At the bottom, press the dough to seal it and tuck it under. Transfer the coffee cake to the baking sheet (still on the parchment). Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a cool room-temperature spot until nearly doubled.
Preheat the oven to 400. Brush with an egg wash and place in the fridge for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with sliced almonds if desired. Bake for 22 to 25 minutes, rotating the pan halfway in between. Transfer to a cooling rack and immediately brush with a thin layer of jelly glaze (see below). Top with powdered sugar or powdered sugar glaze. (see below)
Cream cheese filling:
(Makes enough for at least 2 danish-I made two cheese filled and one cheese and raspberry jam with this recipe)
8 ounces cream cheese
6 Tablespoons sugar
1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 Tablespoons flour
finely grated zest of half a lemon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Combine ingredients in a food processor.
Melt 1/4 cup of your choice of jam or jelly and 3 Tablespoons water in a saucepan over medium heat.
Powdered Sugar glaze:
Combine 2 cups powdered sugar with a few Tablespoons of milk (about 2 or 3) , whisking, until desired consistency is reached.
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My Blog List
My Favorite Reads
- Bride & Groom First and Forever Cookbook
- Deceptively Delicious
- Giada's Kitchen New Italian Favorites
- Martha Stewart's Cooking School
- Martha Stewart's Hors D'Oeuvres Handbook
- The Art & Soul of Baking
- The Bon Appetit Cookbook
- The Martha Stewart Living Cookbook: The New Classics
- Williams-Sonoma Cooking at Home