Chocolate Cherry Cream Cheese Danish{HOW TO: Braid Pastry Dough}
Serves: 12 Individual sized Danishes
 
These danishes can be made into 2 large danishes as well, rather than 12 individual ones. Simply apply the same steps as shown in the tutorial, but use 1 sheet of puff pastry in its whole form, rather than cutting it into 6 pieces.
Ingredients
  • 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
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. Add the lemon juice, vanilla, and almond extract to the mixture. Beat until well incorporated. Cover bowl and set aside until ready to use.
  5. 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'.
  6. With a pizza cutter, cut the square into 6 rectangles(see photos above).
  7. Lay out one rectangle of pastry in front of you and keep the rest covered.
  8. Using the pizza cutter, make diagonal cuts along both sides of the puff pastry(see photos above).
  9. 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.
  10. Place ½ T. of Nutella on top of the cream cheese filling and spread out in the same manner.
  11. Place 3-4 cherries along with a little sauce across the top of the nutella and cream cheese filling.
  12. Lift the middle flap of pastry closest to you up and over the filling, sealing the sides.
  13. 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.
  14. Tuck the last two strips underneath the top end of the pastry.
  15. Carefully move the danish to a parchment lined baking sheet.
  16. Repeat this process with the remaining puff pastry, making 12 danishes total. You will be able to fit about 6 danishes per baking sheet.
  17. 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.
  18. Bake the danishes for 10-15 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown.
  19. Remove and cool slightly before eating.
Notes
Store the danishes in the refrigerator if not eating right away. Heat slightly before eating before best results.
Recipe by The Kitchen McCabe at http://thekitchenmccabe.com/2014/02/19/chocolate-cherry-cream-cheese-danishhow-to-braid-pastry-dough/