Danish Dough

Total Time:
12 hr
12 hr

2 pounds of dough

  • 1 envelope dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup milk, warm (about 110 degrees.)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cold
  • In a large bowl sprinkle the yeast over the milk. Let sit for about 5 minutes. Add the egg, sugar, salt and vanilla. Whisk gently to combine. Set aside.

  • Quarter each stick of butter and cut into 9 or 10 pieces. Toss the diced butter and flour together in a medium bowl.

  • (Optional method) Put the flour in the bowl of a food processor. Cut each stick of butter into 1/4 inch slices and mix into the flour. Pulse machine 8 to 10 times, just to cut the pieces of butter into 1/2 inch pieces. If there are any larger pieces, break them with your fingers.

  • Add the flour and butter mixture to the wet ingredients and fold with a rubber spatula until the flour is completely moistened. Transfer the dough to a smaller bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

  • Remove the dough from the refrigerator. On a heavily floured surface, pat it into a rectangle about 8 x 6 inches, and then roll it into a larger rectangle about 14 x 24 inches. Brush off any excess flour and fold both edges in so that they meet in the center. If the dough is sticking underneath, release it with a long flexible metal palate knife. Dusting off any excess flour and fold the dough in half when the edges meet. This is called a "book or 4-fold". Rotate the rectangle of dough 1/4 turn on the table. This is called a "turn". Roll into a rectangle measuring about 24 x 12 inches, loosening the dough underneath with a the metal spatula, reflouring as necessary. Brush off any excess flour and give it another book fold. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for 20 to 30 minutes.

  • Remove the dough from the fridge and repeat this process two more times, rolling the dough out each time to 12 x 24 inches. There are 4 book folds in all. After the final turn, shape the package into a rectangle measuring about 9 x 6 inches. Brush off any excess flour, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for up to 2 days or freeze for up to one month.

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