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Cheese Danish

My husband is definitely not a morning person. On the weekends, it takes him about two hours (and two huge cups of coffee with breakfast) to get “lead in his pencil”. On weekdays, I wake up far before he does. I make the lunches, tidy the house, and get our son ready for the day. By the time that he is just getting up and into the shower, I am dressed with the car warming up outside and ready to go. I would love to give him a kiss and wish him a good day – but in the time that we’ve been married, I’ve learned better. Mornings are just not a great thing.

While I may not kiss him and wish him a good day, I most certainly can make sure that he starts the day with something yummy in his belly. I found this recipe over the weekend after asking him what he wants for breakfast. He picked cheese danish for the week, and the search was on. The shell for these danish was made from the flaky apple turnover post which included a how to on puff pastry on Annie’s Eats. The filling, which is from Ina Garten, was simple to make and came together in no time. It is so nice to also finally have an oven that is working. I will find out later today if these are a keeper or not, but I am guessing – yes, a keeper. 

Update: Keeper, but with half the amount of lemon zest listed in the recipe below. I will make this again before I adjust the recipe. 

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 extra-large egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons ricotta cheese
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
  • 2 sheets (1 box) frozen puff pastry, defrosted
  • 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

Place the cream cheese and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and cream them 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 2 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 pastries for about 20 minutes, rotating the pan once during baking, until puffed and brown. Serve warm.

Source: Ina Garten, Food Network

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