Gardening, Cooking and Decorating on the Prairie of Kansas

Welcome to Linderhof, our 1920's home on the prairie, where there's usually something in the oven, flowers in the garden for tabletops and herbs in the garden for cooking. Where, when company comes, the teapot is always on and there are cookies and cakes to share in the larder.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Easy Cheese Danish

I love cheese Danish. It has always been my Danish of choice. I was very happy when in the latest Barefoot Contessa Cookbook, Barefoot Contessa At Home, included a recipe for a cheese Danish. An easy cheese Danish!

With a bit of cream cheese, sugar, lemon, a couple of eggs and a smidge of ricotta, you can whip up the filling in a trice. A package of puff pastry is always in my freezer, and once thawed, is the basis for the Danish.

Ina cuts hers into fourths but I wanted to stretch mine a bit further so I cut each sheet of pastry into nine squares. Instead of a tablespoon of filling I used a teaspoon.

And as she suggested, I made them the night before, covered and refrigerated until this morning.
Up early (but not as early as if I had to entirely make them) to preheat the oven to 400 so that I could pop the two trays of Danish into the oven. The smaller ones still took the 20 minutes to bake and come out luscious and golden.

They made a wonderful addition to the food table at our Chamber coffee this morning and were the first of the treats to go. Yes, I did have one -- before anyone came (for I came early to set up) -- and it was still warm. It was heaven!

Easy Cheese Danish
Barefoot Contessa at Home

8 oz cream cheese at room temperature
1/3 cup sugar
2 extra large egg yolks, at room temperature
2 Tbsp ricotta cheese
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 Tbsp grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
2 sheets (1 box) frozen puff pastry, defrosted
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash

Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

Place the cream cheese & sugar in bowl of an electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment and cream together on low speed until smooth. With the mixer still on low, add the egg yolks, ricotta, vanilla, salt, and lemon zest and mix until just combined. Do not whip!

Unfold one sheet of pastry onto a lightly floured board and roll it slightly with a floured rolling pin until it’s a 10×10 inch square. Cut the sheet into quarters. Place a heaping tablespoon of cheese filling into the middle of each of the 4 squares. Brush the border of each pastry with egg wash and fold two opposite corners to the center, brushing and overlapping the corners of each pastry so they firmly stick together. Brush the top of the pastries with egg wash. Place the pastries on the prepared sheet pan. Repeat with the second sheet of puff pastry and refrigerate the filled Danish for 15 minutes.

Bake the puff pastries for about 20 minutes, rotating the pan once during baking, until puffed and brown. Serve warm.

Makes 8 Danish


Anonymous said...

These look super! I should have made these instead of the pot pies!

Martha said...

Candy -- they are so easy and so good -- I bet they didn't last 5 minutes at our coffee this morning -- of course, husband Jim and I both had to try them . . .


pve design said...

you my dear make it all look easy.
anything with cheese works for me.

Becky said...

Your Danishes look great! I really like making them the smaller size. Next time I'm going to add some dried apricot to the filling.