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Danish Pastry

MiNDFOOD brings you a fool-proof recipe for danish pastry by Food Editor Dixie Elliott.

2 & 3/4 cups plain flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground cardamon

1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

250g butter, well chilled and cut into tablespoon size pieces

3/4 cup milk

7g dry yeast

1/3 cup white sugar

1 egg, at room temperature, lightly beaten

1 Put flour, salt, cardamon and nutmeg into the large bowl of a food processor. Pulse for 1-2 seconds to combine. Add butter and pulse until butter in chopped into teaspoon size pieces. The butter should not be fine, but chunky. This is what gives the pastry the flaky layers. Pour into a large bowl.

2 Heat milk until “blood temperature”. Test milk on your wrist as you would for a babies bottle. The milk should be very warm, not hot or boiling. Pour milk into a jug. Add yeast and 1 tablespoon sugar. Whisk with a fork until well combined. Leave in a warm place for 5-10 minutes or until frothy and bubbly. Add remaining sugar to flour/butter mixture. Stir gently until well combined.

3 Make a well in the centre of dry ingredients. Add frothy yeast mixture and egg. Stir gently to combine. Take care not to break up butter. When just combined, cover with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator. The dough must rest in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours but overnight is better. This dough can be refrigerated for up to 4 days before using. Dough can also be frozen for 1 month. To thaw, keep in plastic wrap and place in refrigerator overnight.

4 Lightly dust a flat work surface with flour. Roll dough out to a rectangular shape approx. 25cm wide x 60cm long. Fold the rectangle into thirds, as you would fold a business letter.

5 Turn so that the shortest end of the folded parcel is facing you. Roll out into a rectangular shape again. Fold into thirds, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes to rest. At the end of the 30 minute rest period the dough is then ready to form into required pastries.

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