Thursday, April 1, 2010

Danish Dough

Most of the time that I want laminated dough for something, I want danish dough. I usually do not what puff pastry, although I could be persuaded under the right conditions, and you can treat danish just like puff(and you can't treat puff like danish). Here is the recipe I have been developing. You can do a lot with this dough, too much to get into in this introductory post. I will try and refer back to it as I use up this batch, it freezes really well!
It is scaled out to the gram to eliminate guessing on how much moisture is in the dough.
Additional photos and comments are available here.
56g butter(melted) + 250g butter(cold)
106g eggs
270g milk
8g salt
7g yeast
603g bread flour

80g parmesan broth fat (explained in comments below)
250g pork lard
Mix the melted butter, eggs, milk, salt, yeast and flour in a bowl until it just becomes uniform, no need to knead too much. Let rest, covered, at room temperature for 3 hours. Fold the dough over a few times and then shape it into a ball. Chill for at least 1 hour in the fridge, or up to 3 days. Add the lard, parmesan fat, and cold butter to a pan and warm until they all melt (microwaving works just as well, be sure to stir a few times). Put into a container and let set up in the fridge. Once the fat is firm place onto a floured work surface and pound it out until it is about 2 inches thick. Place onto a floured tray at least large enough to hold a 1 foot square. Shape the fat into a 1 foot square and place in the fridge until it sets hard. Once the fat is shaped and set place the dough onto a floured work surface and roll into a slightly larger than 2 by 1 foot rectangle. Place the fat onto half of the rectangle and fold the rest of the dough over it. Pinch the sides and let rest for 30 minutes in the fridge. You have 0 layers at this point. Roll out another 2 by 1 foot rectangle, in the same direction as before(keep the top of the dough in the same place), and fold in half again. This creates 2 layers. Let rest for 30 minutes in the fridge and then roll out another 2 by 1 foot rectangle, in the same direction as before, and fold in half again. Now you have 4 layers. Let rest for 30 minutes in the fridge, and then roll out to a 3 foot by 1 foot rectangle, being sure to turn the dough 90 degrees first(the top before is now a side). Fold the ends into the middle and then fold in half (a 4-fold). At this point you have 16 layers. Left rest again for 30 minutes and then roll out to a 3 by 1 foot rectangle. Fold 1/3 of the dough towards the other end and then touch the unfolded end to the far side of the folded dough. There are now 48 layers of fat. The dough is ready to freeze or be used immediately.

Last night I rolled out this dough to 2 mm thick and made little baskets out of it. Check out this link to see how.
Plate it up!
This is one bite, don't nibble.
The fat trio I used was based on necessity and flavor. Usually danish is all butter, but I have a lot of lard and I needed cheese broth for another use. The broth came out great but it looked like this.
I wasn't about to throw away flavor like that, so I mixed it into the fold-in fat. It wasn't noticeable in the final result, but it may be worth trying 100%   fat from boiled cheese if I also laminated in some grated cheese and used some of the broth instead of milk in the base dough. Another time I hope.
You can rest the dough for longer in-between folds, but at least let it relax and firm for 30 minutes.

Keep pushing,


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