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, November 11, 2010

Easy Pastries for Holiday Breakfasts or Brunches Plus . . . another "Food Star"!

Last week I did another cooking class at Life + Style on "Demystifying Puff Pastry". I have at least three great pastry recipes that are great this time of year for company breakfasts or brunches. They are easy and so good . . . and will make your reputation as a pastry chef!

My favorite is the Cheese Danish. From Ina (of course) and they a truly so easy to put together you can almost do it blindfolded. They would make a great addition to the Thanksgiving morning (or Christmas morning) breakfast table. And the good news -- they can be made the night before, popped into the fridge and then baked off while the coffee is brewing!

They make a great continental breakfast with glasses of freshly squeezed (or Simple Orange which tastes like freshly squeezed) orange juice and mugs of fresh hot coffee.
For a great breakfast morning treat there is nothing better than sticky buns. But sticky buns are a lot of work and involve yeast!!! The puff pastry version (again courtesy of Ina) is easy and so tasty.

A package of puff pastry makes 12 sticky buns and 8 cheese Danish, but I've used a box to make a half a recipe of each -- perfect for the four of us (Husband Jim, Daughter Sarah and her Andy and I) along with a platter of good sausages and scrambled eggs and chives.

This is a savory recipe for Cheesy Bacon Buns with cheese and bacon and the puff pastry. Rolled together they are perfect with a plate of scrambled eggs. Cut into thiner slices, they make a great appetizer. These came from a favorite magazine, Southern Lady.

Last Tuesday, I went to see Ina in Kansas City and Wednesday, I was in the city again . . . to attend the opera and before, to have dinner.

At a restaurant in the Brookside area that I've not been to before . . .
called Julian. It's not big and is really a neighborhood "joint" (if you can call this classy spot a "joint")

And when we were dining, but who did we see . . . .
Celina Tio, a contestant on The Food Network's The Next Iron Chef competition, who just happens to be

  1. A James Beard Award Winning Chef
  2. The Owner of Julian
She stopped by our table for a chat and I was in awe of her presence. Her food last night was amazing -- I had the pork shoulder served with mashed sweet potatoes and her butternut squash cheesecake for dessert. It was terrific!!!

She did ask me to be sure to vote for her for the "Fan Favorite" on the Food Network Website . . and I did -- you can vote 10 times per day!!! I hope you will help her win this title -- so if you don't have anyone in particular to vote for, I would appreciate, your taking a bit of time and voting for Celina. Voting is HERE.

Just think, one week, two food stars and me!!!! I feel very special indeed!!!

It's Friday and so it's time to join Michael at Designs by Gollum for Foodie Friday, to see what everyone is making this Friday!

The recipes:


8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/3 c. sugar
2 extra large egg yolks, at room temperature
2 T. ricotta cheese
1 t. vanilla
1/4 t. kosher salt
1 T. grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
2 sheets (1 box) frozen puff pastry, defrosted
1 egg beaten with 1 T. water for egg wash

Preheat oven to 400. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper or silicone mat. Place the cream cheese and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a 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. Don't whip!

Unfold 1 sheet of puff pastry onto a lightly floured board and roll it slightly with a floured rolling pin until it's a 10 by 10 inch square. Cut the sheet into quarters with a sharp knife. 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 opposite corners to 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 pastries for about 20 minutes, rotating the pan once during baking, until puffed and brown. Serve warm.

NOTE: I have made these twice taking each sheet of puff pastry, cutting them on the "folds" and then cutting each "strip" into 4 pieces. I put a teaspoon of filling on each square and follow the above directions. This makes a "mini" Danish which is nice for a shower brunch or where there are several offerings and you want a smaller alternative.


12 T. unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1/2 cup pecans, chopped in very large pieces
1 package frozen puff pastry, defrosted
2 T. unsalted butter, melted and cooled
2/3 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
3 t. ground cinnamon
1 cup raisins

Preheat the oven to 400. Place a 12 cup standard muffin tin on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper (This is an important step -- do not skip over for the buns bubble over the top of the pan and who wants to clean their oven?)

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the 12 T. butter and 1/3 cup brown sugar. Place 1 rounded tablespoon of the mixture in each of the 12 muffin cups. Distribute the pecans evenly among the 12 muffin cups on top of the butter and sugar mixture.

Lightly flour a wooden board. Unfold 1 sheet of puff pastry with the folds going left to right. Brush the whole sheet with the melted butter, leaving a 1 inch border on the puff pastry. Sprinkle each sheet with 1/3 cup of the brown sugar, 1 1/2 t. cinnamon and 1/2 cup of the raisins. Starting with the end nearest you, roll the pastry up snugly like a jelly roll around the filing, finishing the roll with the seam side down. Trim the ends of the roll about 1/2 inch and discard. Slice the roll in 6 equal pieces, each about 1 1/2 inches wide. Place each piece, spiral side up in 6 of the muffin cups. Repeat with the second sheet of puff pastry to make 12 sticky buns.

Bake for 30 minutes until the sticky buns are golden to dark brown on top and firm to the touch. Be careful -- they're hot!!! Allow to cool for 5 minutes onlly, invert the buns onto the parchment paper (ease the filling and the pecans out onto the buns with a spoon) and cool completely!


2 cups finely shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
` cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
3 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 pound hickory smoked bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/2 t. ground red pepper
1 package frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 large egg
1 T. water

In a medium bowl, combine grated cheeses and cream cheese; beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add bacon and red pepper. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until well combined.

On a lightly floured surface roll out puff pastry sheet into a 13 x 11 inch rectangle.

In a small bowl, combine egg and water, whisking to combine. Brush egg mixture on puff pastry sheet. Sprinkle half of the cheese mixture on puff pastry sheet. Sprinkle half of the cheese mixture over pastry, leaving a 1/2 inch border. Beginning with the short side, roll up, jelly-roll style. Repeat procedure with remaining puff pastry and cheese mixture. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap; chill for 2 hours or up to 2 days if desired.

To serve, preheat oven to 350. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Cut rolls into 1/2 inch slices and place on greased baking sheets. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown.

NOTE: I cut mine into 6 pieces per sheet to make big rolls for breakfast. I would use the smaller slices as appetizer portions!


Pondside said...

Oooh Martha, I am so glad you posted the recipes. I'll be buying puff pastry tomorrow for a weekend morning treat.
Off to cast my vote for Celina...........

Mary Bergfeld said...

All these treats look really wonderful, Martha. I'll be happy to vote for Celina based on your recommendation. I hope all is well. Have a great day. Blessings...Mary

Miz Helen said...

Hi Martha,
I love your pretty little pastries just in time for the holidays. Thank you for sharing your recipe.
Miz Helen

La Table De Nana said...

Thank you for these wonderful recipes..

She is charming..and talented..and besides that..I love her braids:)

black eyed susans kitchen said...

This was such a fun isn't everyday that we bump into a celebrity! I was actually watching Ina make those cheese danish the other day on food network and thought I would give it a try..thank you for the recipes.

Erica (Irene) said...

Thanks for posting those recipes, I always have puff pastry hanging around the fridge. Your treats look great.
Erica ;-)

Ben said...

Martha, I'm impressed on more levels than one comment can express. The food, Ina, and Chef Tio, who I'm rooting for to be the next Iron Chef; even on television, I find her a riveting presence.

Keep up the great work!


From the Kitchen said...

I've been meaning to try Ina's sticky buns. Thanks for the delicious reminder!

Thanks for your comments on our new library. Our present library consists of a Carnegie (gifted to the city in 1906) and a 1970s addition. The two can be separated when we sell them. We are committed to finding a buyer who will maintain the historic integrity of the beautiful Carnegie building.


Seedplanter Designs said...

Your Cheesy Bacon Buns sounds wonderful. This calls for further investigation...!

Lottie said...

Yum, yum, yum! Thank you for these recipes and another great post! Have a great week!:-)