I love a good flaky, gooey pastry. And I love chocolate cherry anything. So, I combined them into the most delicious individual little Danishes. Puff pastry filled with creamy cream cheese filling, a tart and sweet dark cherry sauce, and of course…the magic maker: Nutella.
Don’t you love the way the filling just bubbles up and seeps out the sides while they bake? It’s like it’s giving away the secret of the deliciousness that lives inside the pastry, and I’m alright with that.
Nutella is always a welcome addition to anything sweet, I think. But if you didn’t happen to have access to any, chocolate chips would work just fine in its place. And if you’re not a fan of chocolate(oh, the horror!), you could leave it out entirely. I made a few with chocolate and a few with just the cream cheese and cherries. Both were magnificent.
Don’t be intimidated by the braided pastry! I have a tutorial below on how to assemble these danishes, step by step. It can be a little labor intensive, however, to make 12 of these in miniature form, so you are welcome to just make one or two large danishes that can be sliced after baking. The procedure is the same, just in larger form.
Lay out your thawed and unfolded puff pastry sheet on a floured surface or piece of parchment. Sprinkle the top of the pastry with flour and roll out to about 18″x18″.
Use a pizza cutter to cut the pastry into 6 rectangles. Place one rectangle in front of you and keep the rest covered.
Using the pizza cutter, make diagonal slices up the sides of the pastry rectangle as pictured. Spread the cream cheese filling down the middle of the pastry.
Spread the nutella on top of the cream cheese. Top the nutella with the cherry sauce.
Fold the center flap of pastry closest to you up and over the filling, sealing the sides. Take the first strip of pastry on the left side and cross it over the top of the filling, sealing the end of the strip by pressing it into the pastry.
Repeat this on the opposite side. Continue this process, alternating sides with each strip of pastry.
Tuck the last two strips of pastry underneath the end of the pastry farthest from you. Carefully place the braided pastry on a parchment lined baking sheet.
Brush the danishes with a little egg wash and you are ready to bake!
- 1 Pkg. Frozen Puff Pastry, thawed(2 sheets, 17.3 oz.)
- 1 recipe Cherry Filling
- ⅓ C. Nutella
- 8 oz. Cream Cheese, softened
- ⅔ C. Powdered Sugar
- 1 t. Lemon Juice
- ½ t. Vanilla
- ½ t. Almond Extract
- 1 Egg
- 1 T. Water
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Place the cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on medium/high speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Scrap down the sides of the bowl.
- Add the powdered sugar and beat into the cream cheese, starting on low and moving up to medium speed as the powdered sugar is incorporated.
- Add the lemon juice, vanilla, and almond extract to the mixture. Beat until well incorporated. Cover bowl and set aside until ready to use.
- Sprinkle a clean surface with flour. Unfold a sheet of puff pastry(will be folded in thirds) on top of the flour. Sprinkle the top of the pastry with more flour and roll out into a thin square, about 18'x18'.
- With a pizza cutter, cut the square into 6 rectangles(see photos above).
- Lay out one rectangle of pastry in front of you and keep the rest covered.
- Using the pizza cutter, make diagonal cuts along both sides of the puff pastry(see photos above).
- Place about 1 T. of cream cheese filling in the center of the puff pastry and spread out vertically down the middle of the pastry.
- Place ½ T. of Nutella on top of the cream cheese filling and spread out in the same manner.
- Place 3-4 cherries along with a little sauce across the top of the nutella and cream cheese filling.
- Lift the middle flap of pastry closest to you up and over the filling, sealing the sides.
- Take the side strip of pastry closest to you and lay it across the filling, pressing the tip into the puff pastry. Take the side strip of pastry closest to you on the opposite side and lay it across the filling in the opposite direction, across the first strip of pastry and seal. Move to the other side and repeat the process until all the strips have been braided up the length of the pastry.
- Tuck the last two strips underneath the top end of the pastry.
- Carefully move the danish to a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Repeat this process with the remaining puff pastry, making 12 danishes total. You will be able to fit about 6 danishes per baking sheet.
- When all of the danishes have been formed and place on baking sheets, make an egg wash by beating the egg and 1 T. water in a small bowl and brushing each danish with the mixture.
- Bake the danishes for 10-15 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown.
- Remove and cool slightly before eating.