My edited version of the challenge follows, check out the blogroll to link to other Daring Bakers and see what they did and visit us in our kitchen.
Makes 2-1/2 pounds dough
For the dough (Detrempe)
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/2 cup whole milk
1/3 cup sugar
Zest of 1 orange, finely grated
3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 large eggs, chilled
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
For the butter block (Beurrage)
8oz cold unsalted butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour (chilled)
Combine yeast and milk in a bowl with a hand mixer on low speed or a whisk. Add sugar, orange zest, cardamom, vanilla extract, eggs, and orange juice and mix well. Sift flour and salt into a large bowl and make a well in the centre. Pour the liquid in the middle of the well. With your fingertips, mix the liquid and the flour starting from the middle of the well, slowly working towards the edges. When the ingredients have been incorporated start kneading the dough with the heel of your hands until it becomes smooth and easy to work with, around 5 to 7 minutes. You might need to add more flour if the dough is sticky. Transfer dough to a lightly floured baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Combine butter and flour in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat on medium speed for 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle and then beat for 1 minute more, or until smooth and lump free. Set aside at room temperature.
1. After the detrempe has chilled 30 minutes, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll the dough into a rectangle approximately 18 x 13 inches and ¼ inch thick. The dough may be sticky, so keep dusting it lightly with flour. Spread the butter evenly over the center and right thirds of the dough. Fold the left edge of the detrempe to the right, covering half of the butter. Fold the right third of the rectangle over the center third. The first turn has now been completed. Mark the dough by poking it with your finger to keep track of your turns, or use a sticky and keep a tally. Place the dough on a baking sheet, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2. Place the dough lengthwise on a floured work surface. The open ends should be to your right and left. Roll the dough into another approximately 13 x 18 inch, ¼-inch-thick rectangle. Again, fold the left third of the rectangle over the center third and the right third over the center third. No additional butter will be added as it is already in the dough. The second turn has now been completed. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
3. Roll out, turn, and refrigerate the dough two more times, for a total of four single turns. Make sure you are keeping track of your turns. Refrigerate the dough after the final turn for at least 5 hours or overnight. The Danish dough is now ready to be used.
If you will not be using the dough within 24 hours, freeze it. To do this, roll the dough out to about 1 inch in thickness, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and freeze. Defrost the dough slowly in the refrigerator for easiest handling. Danish dough will keep in the freezer for up to 1 month.
Seasoned and cooked boneless pork and beef, minced
Sultanas, plumped in hot water and drained
Dried Cranberries, plumped in hot water and drained
Maraschino Cherries, chopped
I used about a cup of the combined minced meat and 2oz each of everything but the capers (used 2T of those)
Combine all ingredients, mix well.
CARDAMOM PASTRY CREAM
1 cup milk
1/3 cup of sugar
2 tbsp flour
1/2 tbsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
6 pods of green cardamom (more or less depending on how strong you want it to be)
Pour milk into a small saucepan, crush the cardamom in their pods and add to milk. Bring milk to a boil, off heat, cover and let cool, once cool place in refrigerator till needed.
If making the pastry the same day: Do not allow the milk to cool completely, strain it. In a medium bowl, whisk together sugar, flours and the egg. Add a little warm milk to the egg mixture, then while whisking add the rest of the milk. Pour back into saucepan and cook medium heat, whisking constantly. Once it starts to boil let it cook for a minute or two, to desired consistency. Remove from heat and add the vanilla extract, transfer to a bowl and place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the cream. Let cool.
If making the pastry cream the following day: Reheat the milk till its steaming, strain it and continue as above.
For Savoury Braid:
1/4 recipe Danish Dough
3/4 cup pastelle filling
For Sweet Braid:
1/4 recipe Danish Dough
Cardamom Pastry Cream & Orange Jelly (Boil till set: zest of one orange, 1 1/2C Orange juice, 1C Sugar; juice of one lime)
For the egg wash: 1 large egg, plus 1 large egg yolk
1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. On a lightly floured surface, roll the Danish Dough into a 15 x 20-inch rectangle, ¼ inch thick. If the dough seems elastic and shrinks back when rolled, let it rest for a few minutes, then roll again. Place the dough on the baking sheet.
2. Along one long side of the pastry make parallel, 5-inch-long cuts with a knife or rolling pastry wheel, each about 1 inch apart. Repeat on the opposite side, making sure to line up the cuts with those you’ve already made.
3. Spoon the filling down the center of the rectangle. Starting with the top and bottom “flaps”, fold the top flap down over the filling to cover. Next, fold the bottom “flap” up to cover filling. This helps keep the braid neat and helps to hold in the filling. Now begin folding the cut side strips of dough over the filling, alternating first left, then right, left, right, until finished. Trim any excess dough and tuck in the ends.
4. Spray cooking oil onto a piece of plastic wrap, and place over the braid. Proof at room temperature until doubled in volume and light to the touch.
5. Near the end of proofing, preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Position a rack in the center of the oven. Whisk together the whole egg and yolk in a bowl. With a pastry brush, lightly coat the braid. For the savoury braid sprinkle romano on top and for the sweet braid chopped almonds.
7. Bake for 10 minutes, and then rotate the pan so that the side of the braid previously in the back of the oven is now in the front. Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F, and bake about 15-20 minutes more, or until golden brown. Remove from the oven. When the sweet braid is cool, a glaze can be drizzled over it.
Cool and serve the braid either still warm from the oven or at room temperature. The cooled braid can be wrapped airtight and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days, or frozen for 1 month.