Did you know? Denmark is the country with the highest share of people that participate in training courses related to their hobbies. And one of their most popular hobbies is baking and cooking. No wonder, Danes are never bored during lockdowns because they keep themselves busy.
From my many years of integrating into the Danish lifestyle, I figured out that just like any other population, Danes have a few weaknesses of their own. They like to always be right and they think they know best. If you are a Dane reading this, you can’t possibly argue with that! They love biking and I honestly love it too. They drink a lot of coffee and they are very passionate about their cuisine and famous pastries.
Danes embrace their pastries so passionately that you always see long queues outside of bakeries, no matter the extreme hours or the cold, windy and rainy weather. Surprised? Once you taste the pastries, you will understand why they are so passionate about them.
These danish recipes that I am sharing with you were supposed to be part of a separate chapter from my upcoming book about Scandinavian lifestyle. But since the book got postponed to be finished later in 2021, I thought now would be a good time to tempt you to start baking. It’s a great way to bring the cinnamon feeling of danish lifestyle into your own home, no matter the country you’re in.
Vanilla – filled cinnamon rolls
Cinnamon is a very used spice in the whole Scandinavian cuisine, whether it is for baking or other meals. While these particular cinnamon pastries are NOT entirely of Danish origin, they are extremely popular here and easy to make. Even I managed to bake them and I barely know how to fry two eggs.
Ingredients for the dough
- 2 ½ dl cream lukewarm
- 2 ½ dl milk lukewarm
- 50 g yeast
- 1 1/2 dl sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla sugar
- 100 g butter at room temperature
- 12–14 dl wheat flour
- 1 pinch of salt (exclude if the butter is salted)
- Crumble the yeast in a bowl and stir in a little milk until it has dissolved.
- Mix all the ingredients for the dough, except butter, in a stand mixer. Start with the smaller amount of flour. Run the machine at medium speed for about 10 minutes.
- Add the butter in small cubes and run the mixer until the dough comes together and becomes glossy. Add more wheat flour if needed. The dough should release from the edges of the bowl, have a uniform glossy surface and not feel sticky.
- Let the dough rise under a clean kitchen towel at room temperature for about 1.5 hours to 2 hours, or to double size.
- Meanwhile, set the oven at 200 degrees celsius and mix the cinnamon filling (see the ingredients below) to a smooth batter and set aside.
- When the dough has finished rising, turn it upside down on a lightly floured baking sheet and divide it into two pieces. Roll each piece of dough into a rectangle about 1 cm thick, mix the filling ingredients and spread on half of the rectangle and pull over the other half.
- Cut the dough on the long side, into 2 cm wide strips and roll them into buns, tucking the end under the bun.
- Place the buns sparsely on a tray with baking paper and leave them to rise under a clean kitchen towel for about 45 minutes, until doubled in size.
- Make the vanilla cream according to the instructions on the package.
- Press with your thumb in the middle of each bun and make a pit that you fill with vanilla cream.
- Brush the buns over with beaten egg whites and sprinkle with powdered sugar.
- Lower the heat to 175 degrees and bake the buns in the middle or bottom of the oven for about 15-20 minutes, until they are golden brown.
- Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let the buns cool on a wire rack.
Ingredients for cinnamon filling:
- 150 g butter, at room temperature
- 1 dl sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla sugar
- 2-3 tablespoons cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons wheat flour
Ingredients vanilla filling:
- 1 bag of DrOetker baking-stable vanilla cream
- 4 dl milk
Kanelsnurrer (Cinnamon twists)
These are very popular amongst traditional bakeries and their cinnamon scent makes you home smell so cosy and welcoming.
Ingredients for the dough
- 3 dl lukewarm milk
- 25 g yeast
- ½ – 1 tsp. cardamom
- 60 g powdered sugar
- 1 egg
- 550-600 g wheat flour
- ½ tsp salt
- 80 g butter, diced.
Ingredients for the remonce filling:
- 120 g butter
- 120 g brown sugar
- 2 Tbsp. cinnamon
- Pour the milk into a bowl and stir the yeast into it. Add cardamom, eggs and about half the flour. Mix well together and add the rest of the flour and salt.
- Knead the dough until the surface is uniform and it releases from the sides of the bowl, then add the butter . This step is much easier and takes about 7-8 minutes if you’re using a stand mixer. If not, err on the upper side of the amount of flour and add the butter from the beginning.
- After adding the cubes of butter, continue kneaded until it is shiny and smooth again. Then let the dough rest warmly for 1½ hour with a cloth over so that it rises a little, then another hour in the refrigerator.
- Now it’s time to make the filling.
- Stir butter, sugar and cinnamon together for a remonce cream with an electric whisk.
- Putting it all together:
- Turn the dough out onto a floured board and roll it out into a rectangle of approx. 30×60 cm. Spread the remonce cream over the dough plate with a dough scraper so that it is evenly distributed.
- Fold one third of the dough in towards the middle and fold the other third onto the first so that you have 3 layers of dough. Now roll out the dough again to approx. 30×30 cm, and cut it into strips that are 30 cm long and approx. 2 cm wide.
Making the cinnamon twists:
- Take one strip and twist it well. Then hold it with one hand and roll it around pointer and index fingers of the other, tucking the end under the cinnamon twist
- Beat an egg and brush the cinnamon twists with it, then bake them at 200° celcius for approx. 12-14 minutes. Cool them on a rack and serve warm.
If these recipes got you excited about bringing more of the Danish cuisine into your home, I found a website that shares 14 traditional danish dishes, find it HERE . Let me know which one was your favorite!
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