Danish Delights!

In Baking, Dessert, Pastry, Snacks on January 24, 2012 at 11:12 pm

I have been wanting to make something with buttery light pastry for a long time – either croissants, danish pastries or pain au chocolat. This recent post from Kelsy made me decide to give danishes a go, seeing as hers looked so yummy!  I am up at my parents farm for a few days, and thought danish pastries for breakfast would be a nice treat for them. I was really pleased with how they turned out. It took me a while, as I was using a unfamiliar kitchen and oven, so I probably cooked them a tad long….but for a first attempt, they looked pretty good – and absolutely delicious! The pastry was just right, if I do say so myself. I’m on my mum’s laptop and she doesn’t have photoshop so I can’t adjust the lighting…so apologies for any dark photos.

Danish pastries!

The recipe is taken from my dear dear Comfort Food book. It is fairly involved, so if you are wanting to make these, do set aside a couple of hours (of course there are breaks in between).

Pastry ingredients:

275g/2 1/2 cups flour

1/4 tsp salt

1 tbsp caster sugar

225g/ 1 cup butter (softened)

2 tsp surebake yeast

1 egg, beaten

1/2 (scant) cup chilled water

Filling ingredients:

3 tbsp near boiling water

2 tbsp ground coffee

3 tbsp butter

1/2 cup caster sugar

1 egg yolk

1 cu ground almonds

1 egg, beaten

1 cup apricot

2 tbsp water

For decoration:

sliced almonds

glace cherries (optional, I didn’t use them)

1 1/2 cups icing sugar (for making coffee icing, I didn’t do this because I left my piping bag at home)

1. To make pastry, sift the flour, salt and sugar into a bowl. Rub in 2 tbsp of the butter. Stir in the yeast. In a separate bowl, mix the egg and water together, add to flour mixture and then knead into a soft dough. Lightly knead for 4-5 mins. Place in a plastic bag and seal. Chill for 15 mins.

2. Put the remaining butter for the pastry between two sheets of baking parchement and beat with a rolling pin to make a 18 cm square. Chill.

3. Roll the dough on a floured surface to a 25 cm square. Put the butter in the middle of the dough square, angled like a diamond, then bring up each corner of the dough to enclose it fully.

4. Roll out the pastry thinly to measure about 35cm in length. Turn up the bottom third of the pastry, then gently fold down the top third. Seal the edges together with a rolling pin. Wrap the pastry in clear film (plastic wrap) and chill for 15 mins.

5. Repeat the folling and folding process three more times, turning the pastry over so that the short ends are at the top and bottom. Allow the pastry to rest for 15 mins between each turn.

6. To make the filling, pour the hot water over the coffee and infuse for 4 mins. Strain through a fine sieve. Cream butter and sugar. Beat in the egg yolk, ground almonds and 1 tbsp of the coffee.

7. Divide the dough and filling equally into three. Roll one dough portion to an 18 x 35 cm rectangle. Spread with filling and roll up from short end. Cut into 6 equal slices. Roll another portion into a 25 cm round, cut into 6 equal segments. Put a spoonful of filling at the widest end of each segment. Roll the pastry towards its point to form a crescent. Roll out the remainig dough into a 20 cm square; cut into four. Place some filling in the centre of each square. Make slices to create 4 triangles and fold ovr almost to the centre, twisting half the triangle. (The picture might help make it clearer). I had a little bit of filling left over.

Rounds and crescents

Star like shape

8. Preheat the oven to 220 degrees celsius. Place pastries on lined baking tray, spaced well apart. Cover with cling film and leave to rise 20 mins.

Cover and leave to rise 20 mins

9. Brush with egg and bake for 15-20 mins until lightly browned and crisp (mine were left in a bit long). Cool on wire racks.

Left them in oven a bit too longer (mum's oven is hot!) but fortunately it didn't affect them too badly, and certainly not the taste!

9. Put the jam in a pan with water; bring to the boil, then sieve. Brush the jam over the warm pastries. How you want to decorate is up to you; I just added some sliced almonds, but you could also top with glace cherries or make coffee icing with the icing sugar and remaining coffee. Drizzle using a piping bag. Leave to set before serving.

Enjoy the decorating process!



  1. looks fab! i may try your recipe. how was the texture?

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