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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Citron Dansk Kage - Lemon Danish Cake (Pastry)

I love October! The reasons I love October are the cooler temperatures, the leaves changing colors, football season, and Halloween is this month, which means scary movie marathons!

I always love watching old time classic horror movies like Bride of Frankenstein, Frankenstein, Dracula, Nosferatu. Bella Lugosi is one of the best actors to portray Dracula to this day.

I was also lucky enough to grow up with the original Halloween movies like Friday the 13th, Halloween, Nightmare on Elm Street, and The Shining.

Oh sure, there's been a few good ones since, the remake of Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Ring, Blair Witch Project, and Paranormal Activity.

But anymore their either corny or just too predictable. Maybe it's because I'm not a teenager anymore and I can see the stupid decisions they're always making. Like going out to the garage by yourself at night when you know the serial killer is on the loose. Or leaving the party at midnight by yourself and walking through the graveyard.

I mean, Hello, what are you thinking? Have a little common sense here people. Sigh. Does this mean I've finally grown up? Nah, can't be that!

What better way to honor the king of horror himself, Vincent Price, than to make a recipe this month from his cookbook, "A Treasury of Great Recipes". In celebration of its 50th anniversary, this wonderful cookbook has been recently re-released.

And my friends over at The Daily Meal came up with an idea for us to recreate one of three recipes (out of many) that Vincent Price and his wife, Mary, put together for this cookbook.

The three recipes we could choose from are:
  1. Guacamole
  2. Spaghetti alla Bolgnese
  3. Dansk Kage (Danish pastry)
I challenged myself and made the Dansk Kage, which is a Danish pastry. Kage translates into cake, but it is a pastry. I have never attempted to make a Danish pastry before, let alone any type of pastry, so I was going into uncharted territory with this recipe.

Especially since I didn't have a photo or YouTube video to follow as I made this. Technology can make things so much easier sometimes!

I mean, what's the worst that could happen? After all, if it's a scary looking Danish then that kind of captures the whole scary movie/horror mood, right?

Lucky for you, they turned out amazing. Flaky, buttery dough that has a hint of lemon and almond flavors with a lemon glaze icing and a sprinkling of candied lemons over the top...Mmm!

The lemon flavoring with the glaze icing and the candied lemons on top are my own touch to this delicious Danish pastry.

These lemon Danish pastries are great for breakfast, especially Sunday brunches. They bring that personal touch to your brunch.

They also make for great snacks while watching all the upcoming scary movie marathons!

Citron Dansk Kage - Lemon Danish Cake (Pastry)

Prep time: 2 and 1/2 hours (includes dough rising and chilling time)
Cook time: 10 to 15 minutes
Total time: 3 hours
  • 4 cups + more for rolling out dough All-Purpose flour, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 package Active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup lukewarm water
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 cups (4 sticks) butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup ground almonds
  • 1 egg white, beaten
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped almonds
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar, for sprinkling on top
  • 2 Tablespoons candied lemons, for sprinkling on top after icing
  1. In a large mixing bowl, add 4 cups sifted flour, salt, and 1/4 cup sugar. Mix with a wire whisk. Set aside.
  2. In a small glass or bowl, mix together lukewarm water and package of active dry yeast until yeast is dissolved. Pour yeast mix into dry ingredients and blend together.
  3. Using the dough attachment for your stand mixer, combine 1 beaten egg, warm milk, nutmeg, lemon extract, and almond extract into bowl with other ingredients. Mix together until dough becomes soft and pliable.
  4. Remove dough from bowl and place onto a flat, floured surface. Shape into a ball.
  5. Place dough into a warm, buttered bowl. Lightly brush melted butter over the top to help prevent cracking. Cover with a small towel and place in a warm area with no drafts, for 30 to 45 minutes, to allow dough to rise. Dough should double in size.
  6. After this time, remove dough from bowl and place on a flat, floured surface. Roll out dough into a square shape, until its 1/2 inch thick.
  7. Place 2 cups butter into a microwavable dish (a large measuring cup works great for this) and place into microwave until butter becomes melted, about 45 seconds to 1 minute. Stir after removing from microwave.
  8. With a pastry brush, lavishly brush on butter over 2/3 of the dough surface, leaving 1/3 unbuttered.
  9. Fold the unbuttered portion over once, fold the buttered portion of dough on top of it, so there are 3 layers of dough.
  10. Roll dough out to a square shape, until its about 3/4 inch thick, and repeat buttering and folding dough on top of itself 2 more times.
  11. Place the dough as is, back into the buttered bowl, covering with a small towel and place into refrigerator (or a cold place) for 30 minutes.
  12. While dough is in refrigerator, mix together 1/4 cup sugar and 1/4 cup melted butter in a small bowl. Cover and set aside.
  13. In a separate bowl, mix together 1/2 cup melted butter, 1/2 cup sugar, and 1/2 cup ground almonds to make almond paste. Cover and set aside.
  14. After 30 minutes, remove dough from refrigerator and roll out on a flat, floured surface until dough is 1/4 inch thick.
  15. Lavishly brush melted butter and sugar mixture over the top of the dough.
  16. Using a sharp knife, cut dough into squares measuring 4 inches.
  17. Place 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of almond paste down the center of each square. Fold over dough and seal edges together using a fork. Using the tip of a sharp knife, make 3 cuts in center of dough.
  18. Gently move Danishes onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
  19. At this time, preheat oven to 450F degrees.
  20. Place the Danish tray into your refrigerator for 20 minutes.
  21. While completed Danishes are chilling, add 1 egg white to a small bowl or cup and whip for 30 seconds.
  22. If you don't have any leftover ground almonds, chop 2 Tablespoons almonds and place into a small bowl.
  23. After Danishes have chilled for 20 minutes, remove from refrigerator, brush tops of Danish with egg white, sprinkle sugar and chopped almonds over the top.
  24. Place into oven and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until tops are golden brown.
  25. Remove from oven, transfer to a wire rack, and let cool completely.

Lemon Glaze Icing

A subtle, lemon glaze icing that's wonderful over, Danishes, breads, cookies, or cakes.
Prep time: 5 minutes
  • 1 cup powdered (confectioner's) sugar
  • 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • 2 teaspoons milk
  • 1 Tablespoon butter, melted
  1. Mix together all ingredients in a small mixing bowl.
  2. Using a spoon, drizzle icing over Danishes in a back and forth motion until you achieve desired look.
  3. Sprinkle with candied lemons.
  4. Best served warm with coffee or tea.

I would like to thank Paradise Fruit Company for the candied lemon peels used in this recipe.
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