This month's bonus recipe, Easy Cheese Danish, was selected by Val at More Than Burnt Toast. I made just a few changes based on using what I had on hand rather than making a special trip to the store. I used part-skim ricotta instead of cream cheese and orange zest instead of lemon. I cut the recipe in half and made four danish ( just the right number for two us...) and left two plain and placed some fig jam in the other two. They tasted pretty good. The plain ones had a definite orange flavor that kind of reminded me of...don't laugh...but they tasted like Trix cereal to me :) And that's a good thing! The ones with fig were quite figgy and yummy too.
There were just a couple of issues I had. By using the ricotta, the filling was pretty runny. I think had I used a little flour in the filling it would have stabilized the ricotta a bit more. Also, because of the filling being runny, I hesitated in using a lot of it in the danish and this was a mistake! I would have rather have dealt with overflowing danish and all that yummy filling rather than playing it safe and having more pastry than yummy goodness! Other than that, they were simple and easy and quite tasty. Oh, and I think in the future I will not glaze the entire danish with the egg wash because they always come out looking slightly burned on the edges even though they're not.
I can't wait to make these in different variations and see some of the delicious ones my fellow Barefoot Bloggers have created! If you'd like to try them too, here's the recipe:
Barefoot Contessa's Easy Cheese Danish
Copyright Ina Garten - All Rights Reserved
1/3 cup sugar
2 extra large egg yolks, at room temperature
2 T ricotta cheese
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1/2 - 1 T 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 degrees. 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. Don’t 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