Danish, Raspberry or Cheese

While fiddling around with buttery croissant dough, I realized during the "butter layer" stage I made a particularly delicious blunder.  Spreading softened butter onto the dough prior to folding, instead of using a semi-firm butter layer, made for a softer layered pastry. And thus these Raspberry and Cheese Danishes were fashioned. Filled with a dollop of cream cheese, or freshly prepared raspberry jam, this buttery pastry was  delectably soft and layered, making for a delightful breakfast treat. Enjoy!!

Servings: 16 danishes
Prep Time: ~6hours

Danish Dough
1/4 Cups Warm Water
2 Packages of Active Dry Yeast, rapid rise
1 Tbsp Sugar
2 Tsp Salt
1 3/4 Cup Milk, Whole
5 Tbsp Butter, melted
1/2 Cup Sugar
5-6 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1 1/2 Cup Butter, softened
Egg Wash: 2 eggs + 1 1/2 Tbsp Water

Cream Cheese Filling (8oz)
4oz Cream Cheese, whipped
2 Tbsp Sugar
1 Egg Yolk
1/2 Tsp Vanilla

Raspberry Jam Filling (8oz) See Recipe
1/2 Cup Raspberry Jam

1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
2 Tsp Water

Dough - Step 1In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar, salt, and yeast with 1/4 cup of the warm water. Allow to rest for 5-10 minutes, until foamy. While the mixer is on a low speed, pour in the remaining water, melted butter and 4 1/2 cups of the flour. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, only until a dough forms. Dust a clean surface and hands with some flour, and remove the dough from the bowl. Knead lightly in a circular motion to form a ball and work in additional flour if the dough is still wet. Place the dough into a large, oiled, mixing bowl, and cover for two hours to rise. After the dough has risen, punch lightly in the center of the dough and proceed with the butter layer.

Dough - Step 2 - The Butter Layer: Allow butter to soften to room temperature. After completing Step 1, roll out the dough into a large rectangle (10"x15" is what I used) and spread the softened butter evenly across the top using a spatula. Note - the butter layer should just about reach the edges of the dough after it is rolled out, so plan your preferred size accordingly.

Visually separate the dough into thirds: Starting at the left, fold 1/3 of the dough to the right, over the middle 1/3, and fold the last 1/3 to the left, over the first fold. Refrigerate until just firm (~20-30 minutes), rotate clockwise 90 degrees, lightly flatten into a rectangle, and repeat. Continue this process until desired number of layers is reached (I repeated ~2 hours).

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Danish Shape: After forming the layers in Step 2, lightly flatten the dough into a large rectangle (a bit less than 1/4" in height). Cut the dough into 4" squares. Fold the four corners of the squares toward the center, leaving a small area in the center filling, and lightly press to secure the corners. Spoon approximately 2 level teaspoons of filling onto the center of each danish.  Brush with the egg wash prior to baking. Bake at 425 degrees for 10-12 minutes, or until danishes have a golden crust. Set aside to cool.

Cream Cheese Filling: Blend the cream cheese, sugar, egg, and vanilla until smooth. Spoon 2 level teaspoons onto the center of each danish.

Raspberry Jam Filling: Spoon 2 level teaspoons onto the center of each danish.

Drizzle: Whisk the powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and water until smooth. Drizzle onto the cooled danishes.

Nutrition Info (1 serving): (Coming Soon!!)
Calories , Total Fat: g, Sat. Fat: g, Cholesterol: mg, Sodium: mg, Carb: g, Fiber: g, Sugars: g, Protein: g