This is my first Daring Bakers Challenge and I was very excited when I saw this month's recipe. I love cooking but I'm new to the baking thing so this was a great challenge - I mean there was YEAST involved! We throw a lot of parties in my house - small impromptu parties and "Oh my god there are way too many people in my house" planned (sort of) parties. People always ask what they can bring and I recently decided that I no longer wanted my response to be "Well you can bring dessert because I don't bake". So for Christmas my boyfriend's family showered me with gifts that would help me conquer my baking fears, including a KitchenAid mixer (WAY too generous but so AWESOME!) and Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook, probably knowing that my baking experiments would surely benefit them.
I must admit though that this month has been packed with weddings and work parties and family visits and as June 29th got closer and closer I was thinking "Maybe I'll skip this month's challenge" more and more! But, luckily, my Danish loving boyfriend would not allow that. I started my Danish Wednesday night and as I was about to run around the corner to get whole milk people started fighting in front of my house! They were yelling things that sounded completely ridiculous coming out of fat white men's mouths like "Yo I'm a gansta for real" and "That was a jab! I knocked you out with a jab!" so that delayed things for a minute. It's still funny to me that people are getting in fist fights outside my door while my boyfriend and I listen to NPR and bake Danish!
So anyway I eventually got my milk and made the dough. I was concerned about butter leakage but luckily it was minimal. I did put the butter in the fridge after I made it because I still had about twenty minutes to wait for my dough and I worried it would get too soft. Things were looking good. I made an apple blackberry filling with apples, blackberries, sugar, cinnamon and lemon juice and a sweet cream cheese filling with softened cream cheese, lemon juice and honey. I finished my final folds and put it in the fridge to rest. Please forgive the lack of progress photos - I was rushing!
Thursday after work I rolled out the dough and added my filling, cream cheese on the bottom, apples on top. Next time around I'll add more, I think I was too worried about over stuffing. The braid didn't look so good but I didn't have time to worry about it – I had a party to get ready for! So I gave my boyfriend the instructions for egg washing and baking the Danish and left it in his hands. He did a great job as you can see from the photos. Although he did confess that he forgot to turn the oven temp down and ended up just baking the whole thing for twenty minutes on 400 but it still looks and tastes delicious. I can't wait to play with the other half of the dough that's sitting in the freezer! Thanks Daring Bakers for an awesome challenge!