How Much Abuse Can One Danish Braid Take?
|When I saw this month’s challenge, I was pretty excited.. not only were 2 very lovely people (Kelly of Sass & Veracity and Ben of What’s Cooking) hosting this month, but they had chosen a recipe I’d always wanted to try – DANISH. Seriously, when you get a good Danish, is there anything better? Buttery layers, soft and gooey and always filled with GOOD STUFF!|
So lemme tell ya’ll.. I’m sure you’ve seen quite a few Daring Baker challenge posts already today and some of you might even be a lil a-scared. Well don’t be. And I’m going to tell you why. I beat the ever-lovin’ shit out of this dough and it STILL gave me a flakey, buttery, delicious end product. Seriously.
A few of us got together a few weeks ago to bake the braid.. and well, I was doing this and that and running here and there ultimately running out of time during the day to even shape, fill and proof my braid. So I had this rectangular slab of dough, chock full of fine European butter – what the hell do I do now? The gals suggested I go ahead and freeze it until I was ready to bake. And that I did.. so there’s the first injustice (INJUSTICE NO. 1!) committed against my dough.
And then the same bunch got together last Sunday to bake the garlic knots, so I decided I could take on the braid at the same time. HAR! I crack myself up! Like I can even walk and chew gum at the same time.. but I’m going to take on not one but TWO yeast breads at the same time? hahahahahahaa! They don’t call me the Queen of Dorks for nothin’ yanno?
INJUSTICE NO. 2 – someone who cared about her dough would have taken it out of the freezer the night before, placed it gently in the fridge and allowed it to slowly thaw out over night. Well I did care! But I’m a moron! I forgot to take it out of the freezer the night before so at 6 a.m. on Sunday morning I placed it on my counter. :P
Okay so garlic knot making ensued.. and it was fun and I chit chatted and behaved myself and showed off wedding photos of myself and Becks.. *cough* and then I excused myself from the chat so that I could give some attention to my son, Nigel, as he was acting as if he never gets any loving from ANYONE.. poor lil neglected puppy (yeah right). Mmm hmm.. ‘kay well I laid down on the sofa in our office and he hopped up and we played and cuddled and told each other that we loved each other and HELLO- next thing I knew? It was 3 hours later. I had fell asleep. Gah.
So my dough had sat out on the counter of my relatively warm kitchen for approximately SIX HOURS. Oops.. I believe we’ll present that as INJUSTICE NO. 3. *sigh*
Well as ya’ll can imagine after my nap, I couldn’t be bothered with the task of shaping, filling, proofing and baking my braid – so I threw it back in the fridge. May it please the court – INJUSTICE NO. 4!
Next morning.. I sheepishly peeked into my fridge fully expecting my dough to be bent over with cheeks spread giving me the full moon – but no.. it laid there obediently. So now I’m thinking that it’s being nice while in the fridge but when I try to roll it out, it’ll act up and be all sorts of bitchy – it’ll go all elastic on my ass.
Huh. It didn’t.
I cut it in half and it rolled out nicely.. it stayed in place and didn’t shrink up on me.. it laid still while I filled it and cut the fringe for the braid – and it wasn’t even its fault that it looked so NOT like a braid when I was through (I managed that all by myself, thankyouverymuch). It didn’t rise all too much.. actually it was kinda more like a quasi-braided filled pancake than anything else, but again, I blame myself on that one – I don’t think I should have rolled it so thin.
And the reason I blame myself is because after I cut out a dozen squares from the 2nd half of the dough and shaped them into hilarious looking single pastries, I had this huge honkin’ blob of scraps left-over. I was just picking it up to throw it away (INJUSTICE NO. 5!) when I realized that was an awful lot of expensive European butter to be throwin’ away so I said, “fakk it” and I rolled it all out again, grabbed a couple handfuls of brown sugar and dumped it down the middle, sprinkled on some cinnamon and then took about a ¼ c. of butter and threw lil blobs of it here and there – braided it all up and allowed it to proof. I got a nice puffy lookin’ braid by the time I was ready to bake.. after it came out of the oven I whipped up a quick glaze of powdered sugar and super strong coffee and drizzled it all over the top. it was flippin’ gorgeous. I was shocked!!!
Soon it was time for the first taste and I shite you not, kids! It was HEAVENLY – the best out of the 3 uses of this dough. And it was a MISTAKE! hahahahahahaa! Damn.
But keep in mind, although rather flat – the first braid was buttery and flakey and tasted wonderful. The lil pastries were actually quite cute and they turned out very flakey.. and then the cinnamon braid was stupendous – after all of the bad, bad things I’d done to this dough, it still kicked some arse! So if mine turned out this well.. you have no excuse not to try it yourselves!
Now think about this.. you’ll get through the whole procedure without any injustices to your dough, because ya’ll are way more talented than I am. Imagine how much more fabulous yours will turn out! Now that’s my kinda dough! :)
Start clickin’ on that blogroll.. you’ll find more than enough AWESOME posts to inspire you to make your own Danish Braid before the month is over… :)