Monday, November 1, 2010
These are a pain in the ass to make, especially considering that they’re only going to last a few minutes once you pull them out of the oven and start stuffing your greedy greedy face. On the other hand, they’re a great way to win someone’s forgiveness, or guarantee your partner’s undying loyalty and affection.
1 1/3 cup soy or almond milk, divided
¼ cup + 2 T firm silken tofu
2 t tapioca starch
2 T water
5 ½ sticks margarine
2 T + 2 t dry active yeast
¼ cup sugar
½ t salt
¾ t ground cardamom
1 pound 5 oz bread flour (or regular unbleached flour with a little vital wheat gluten added)
Jam or pie filling or whatever floats your boat
Powdered sugar mixed with a splash of water and a few drops of lemon juice (this should be a little thinner than the consistency of egg whites)
The (long) process
1. Mix 1 cup of milk, tofu, starch, and water until silky-smooth. Refrigerate.
2. Warm remaining milk, and combine with yeast, sugar, and salt. Let it get a little frothy, then add it to the refrigerated milk mixture and return to the fridge.
3. Wrap margarine loosely in plastic wrap and pound/roll into a 5-inch square. Refrigerate.
4. Add the flour to the liquid in batches until dough is soft and a little sticky but holds together. Use more or less flour as needed to get the right consistency. You need to be able to roll the dough without it sticking to everything, but too firm and it won’t be pliable.
5. On a floured surface, roll dough into a n 8-inch square. Unwrap margarine and place diagonally on top of dough, then fold corners of dough up to seal in the margarine. Return to fridge if it is getting sticky.
6. Roll dough into an 8x12 inch rectangle, being careful not to let the margarine break through. Brush off excess flour, and fold in thirds like a letter. Loosely wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 20-40 minutes.
7. Re-roll into an 8x12 rectangle and fold again. Repeat this rolling/folding for 4 total folds, refrigerating for 20-40 minutes after each time.
8. Roll dough into a 10x14 inch rectangle. Cut dough in half lengthwise, and refrigerate half while you work with the other half.
9. Cut dough lengthwise into 3/8-inch wide strips using a ruler and sharp knife or, if you’re fancy, a pastry cutter.
10. Twist each strip into a tight rope, and roll up in a spiral. Fold the ends underneath the spirals. Place on a cookie sheet (bonus points if you line the sheet with parchement paper), loosely cover with spray-oiled plastic wrap, and let rise until almost doubled. (You should end up with about 30 danish, and I’m told you can freeze them before they rise, and let them rise when you thaw them if you want.)
11. When pastries have almost doubled, preheat oven to 400.
12. Press a slight indentation into the center of each pastry, and add about 1 T filling (I like to use a variety of jams.)
13. Bake for about 15 minutes, until tops just start to turn golden in spots.
14. Meanwhile, whisk together glaze.
15. Brush with glaze as soon as you remove them from the oven. This gives them a nice shiny sugar-layer.
16. Let cool on cookie sheet for about 2 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
17. Store any uneaten ones, if you manage to have uneaten ones, in the fridge.