Sunday, June 29, 2008

Beautiful Danish Pastry Braid!


This is my 5th Daring Bakers Challenge, and I have to say that this was my favorite! I've always wanted to try baking a pastry, so when I found out what this month's challenge was, I was pretty excited! After completing this challange, I've added a few new words to my baking vocabulary such as "butter-laminated dough", "Beurrage", and "Detrempe."

FYI:
Laminated Dough - layered dough created by sandwiching butter between layers of dough
Beurrage – butter block (this is the butter that is sandwiched in the dough)
Detrempe – ball of dough
Interesting, huh?
I only wish that the process of making these braids and pastries were faster...it ended up being a 2-day process. I can't complain though, because that only makes you savor the final product more! This was my first attempt at laminated dough. I found completing the "turns" and folds to be fun. My butter block stayed in place, which made the process pretty easy. It just takes a lot of patience.
The cardamom and orange zest added such a wonderful, authentic flavor to these danishes. The original recipe called for an apple filling, but we were allowed to choose our filling as long as it was homemade. I chose to make a mixed berry filling for the Danish Braid, and I drizzled a hazelnut-coffee glaze over the top. Both of these ideas came from this very helpful video:
Instructional Video - Just click on "Danish Pastry Braid" after following the link.
Another great idea would be to make a savory filling instead of sweet, such as cheese, spinach, etc.
Our gracious hosts this month were Kelly of Sass & Veracity and Ben of What's Cookin'?.

You can find the entire recipe HERE

I think I'm going to let these photos do the rest of the talking...this braid was SO good...I will no doubt be making this time and time again. Sorry there are so many photos...can you tell I had fun with this challenge??
After cutting the strips...
Close-up of the mixed berry filling (raspberry, blueberry, blackberry, and strawberry)
After completing the braiding...
After the final rise...ready for the oven!
A croissant ready for the oven...
Hot and fresh out of the oven!
With the hazelnut coffee glaze...my favorite! I made it by mixing a little coffee with confectioner's sugar.
Fresh croissant...
Just look at those layers inside!
A platter of goodies...

25 comments:

Sarah said...

Looks like you could have bought it from a bakery! Very nicely done.

Melanie C. said...

Beautiful!! Great job! This was a really fun challenge, I agree!

Lorrie said...

your mixed berry filling looks delicious! congrats on a successful challenge!

Melanie said...

Oooh, I wish my braid turned out as lovely as yours. Really, it looks fantastic!

Madam Chow said...

It looks delicious, and the little croissants are soooo cute!

Brownie said...

Pretty, pretty! Those photos are good enough to eat!

Meredith said...

Those croissants look absolutely amazing. perhaps I'll make some with the extra dough...

Jo said...

looks scrumptious ... and a great job done. nice pics as well.

steph- whisk/spoon said...

wow--it is beautiful those croissants are cuties, too!

Ally said...

Your braid looks fantastic! Great job!

Tarah said...

Gorgeous photos! Looks fantastic!

momquixote said...

Very beautiful indeed!

Sarah said...

Yum! Those look gorgeous! The hazelnut coffee glaze sounds fantastic, as does the mixed berry . . . can I have a slice for tea?

Best,
Sarah

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Beautiful! Your braid and Danish Pastries look delicious! Great job!

Cheers,

Rosa

Patti said...

Great looking braid. I loved this challenge, too.

madcapcupcake said...

Oh how delicious looking....love the danishes, great job!

fanny said...

wow your pictures are gorgeous. I loved this challenge as well!

xx fanny

Amelia Bedielia said...

Hazelnut coffee glaze??? You had me at hazelnut. That sounds amazingly good! Your braids and croissants look heavenly!

Renee said...

Your braids look awesome. I love the mixed berry filling. Yummy.

Lunch Buckets said...

Nice job! Your filling and glaze sounds really good :)

Deborah said...

Beautiful job! It all looks so wonderful!

Rebecca said...

Lovely!

Y said...

Love your photos and all the different types of danishes you created. Especially the hazelnut coffee glaze!

breadchick said...

The mixed berry filling sounds delightful; especially right now at height of berry season.

Well done on your challenge.

Debyi said...

Your braid looks so good! I made a mixed berry filling too, but just for some of the little danishes I made. Your croissant is too cute.