Thursday, May 9, 2013

Easy Cheese Danishes and I'll tell you what I want...

Easy Cheese Danishes

What I really really want...

I want a...

I want a...

I really want a quilt for the new baby.

A quilt that looks like this.

Photo courtesy of Little Miss Momma

And I really, really want every special person in my life to gift a piece of fabric that they picked out to give to me so I can make this quilt. A patchwork with pieces of every one in my life right now to document forever. I want my grandmother to pick a pattern. My sister to pick her favorite color. My mother, my Aunts in California, my Aunt in Colorado Springs...I even want the girls at Creekside and and Freshies (My breakfast spots) to pick me out a piece. I'd say the girls at Winona's too, but I think I feel closer to them then they actually do to me. Awkward. Old friends, new friends, Facebook friends, people near and far who may have to ship their fabric. All of them. I want them all. Selfishly. The only problem? I have NO IDEA how to quilt.

And how do I guarantee the quilt is soft and thin, and pliable instead of the heavy rigid ones I've been around? I have no idea. How would I get it to look like the picture above that seems to embody all of those things? Can I take it to a quilter? Is there even such a thing? I'm asking you, dear friends, because I don't know who else to ask. I'm hoping you have some advice for me. I'm guessing the fabric would have to be of a certain quality or made of "quilting" material, which may present a problem. We have some thin, itchy stuff at our Wal-Mart here. That's not really what I'm talking about. I think we have fabric stores though. Fingers crossed. Although, maybe it's sort of rude say:

Would you want to pick out a pice of fabric for Baby MacGray's quilt? Oh, it needs to be quilting fabric. Make sure of that. 

Maybe that's just a given. It would have to be "quilting" fabric, right?

And now I vill talk about zee food. Sorry for my shameless quilt talk. Easy Cheese Danishes, ready? GO!

Easy Cheese Danishes

I made these cheese Danishes for the Soulation gathering I catered this March. Someone in attendance asked me if I had made them and was shocked when I said yes. She expressed that she had never seen danishes that someone had made, only from the store. I suppose someone at the store had to make them as well but I knew what she meant. She went on to point out to everyone that I had, in fact, made them. They were beautiful. And they did look impressive and fresh baked and homey. But honestly? These things are so easy that I felt guilty accepting the praise. Maybe if I had made my own pastry I'd have felt more worthy. Alas, I've done that, and the results are not noticeably different, so I stuck to the frozen pre-made Pepperidge Farm version. I'm not ashamed. Even Ina Garten uses it.

I've always loved Danishes. I remember lusting after the Entemans Raspberry Danish from the grocery store that my mom sometimes got for us as a treat growing up. It was that memory that prompted me to tuck little spoonfuls of good raspberry jam into half of the cheese danishes before baking. Lemon curd would have been amazing too.

Easy Cheese Danishes

Easy Cheese Danishes
adapted From Barefoot Contessa at Home, by Ina Garten
yield: 8 Danishes

For the Danishes:
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

Raspberry Jam (optional-if wanting to make raspberry danishes)

For the icing:
1 cup powdered sugar
1-2 tablespoon lemon juice or milk

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. If making raspberry danishes: spoon 2 teaspoons of jam into the cheese mixture. I spooned one teaspoon towards the top and one towards the bottom. 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. Meanwhile, mix the powdered sugar and lemon juice together in a small bowl. When Danishes are done and still warm, drizzle the glaze over the top in a criss cross pattern. Serve warm.


  1. yes, there are quilters! And you can use any cotton fabric for a quilt. Big stores like jo-anns or hancock fabrics have walls and walls of 'quilting fabrics' that are super cheap. Even a store like michael's sells quilting squares. Then you can pile up all your pieces and take them to a quilter who will put it all together for you!

  2. As someone who was blessed to enjoy these at the Soulation event mentioned, I can say first hand, they were amazing! By far the best I have ever had! Thanks for sharing the recipe, Krysta!

  3. Thank you Janet! Kate- I'm so happy for this information!!! Thank you for the help!

  4. Those danishes look AMAZING! I definitely will have to make up some. xx