You know how there are certain words in the English language that people just try to avoid using at all costs? They are perfectly normal, commonly used words, but for some reason, other than the fact that you might be a crazy person, they just make you cringe? Come on, you know what I’m talking about. The most common word, dare I say it? Moist. Even typing it out makes my insides shudder. I can speak for both myself and Lindsay in this matter. I do not know at what point that word became unacceptable to us, but we avoid it like the plague. Another word like that for me, in particular, is ‘Danish’. Why? I have no idea. I feel like the word does not sound natural coming out of my mouth. Maybe it sounds too fancy? Too classy? Sometimes I go 4 days without showering. I am the definition of un-classy. The word danish does not belong in my vocabulary. However, this danish recipe has been with us for as long as we can remember, so I digress.
When we were younger these little suckers were always in the house. Our mom used to make them all the time, and we would often come home from school to find a plate full of them sitting on the counter awaiting our presence. I have come to realize a lot of things in my 24 years of life and one of those things is that there is nothing better after a long day at school than coming home to freshly baked goodies. (Thanks, mom). If there was a holiday or any type of family gathering, you best believe our mom would whip up a batch of them, and everybody loves them.
The part of this recipe that makes it so simple is the fact that the main ingredient is baking mix. Some would say, “That is cheating. You can’t actually call that baking.” And to that we say, “Go away.” I’m sure Martha Stewart has dabbled in the baking mix at some point in her life too. Could you make them completely from scratch? Yeah, absolutely. But it would take a heck of a lot longer. And let’s be honest, sometimes we are just lazy, and even the idea of putting on regular pants makes us question our entire existence. If I don’t even have the ambition to dress myself, then I absolutely do not want to spend a large amount of time making fancy pastries. Besides, using this quick and easy recipe gives you extra time to do more productive things- like teaching yourself to juggle, or testing all of your pens to see if they work.
And now, finally, here is the recipe for our lazy, un-fancy, but still delicious danish.
These are so fast and easy to make that it will probably take longer for you to read this post than it will actually take to prepare them.
First, you are going to preheat your oven to 450 degrees. While the oven is heating, combine 2 cups of baking mix, 2 tablespoons of sugar, 1/4 cup of softened butter and 2/3 cup of milk in a large bowl, and mix until combined. The mixture is going to be very thick and very sticky, but that is okay! That is how it is supposed to be!
* We have tested this recipe out with both name brand and store brand baking mix and they are very similar. So save yourself a few cents and just go with the store brand.
After all of the ingredients are mixed together, use a scooper, (is that the technical name?) I don’t know. I’m not a professional. The metal ice cream scooper thing. You know what I’m talking about. Right?
Anyway, use a scooper and place scoops on a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment paper. Our scoop is 11/2 inches in diameter, but you could really use any size depending on how big you want them. Place the scoops about an inch apart on the baking sheet. These don’t expand that much in diameter while they are baking, but you still want to give yourself some room. Pretend they are at a high school dance with each other. Close enough to feel each other’s presence, but not so close that an assembly on abstinence is going to be held the next day. Depending on the size, this recipe will yield around 6-9 danish. Danish? Danishes? I just don’t know! Multiple delicious pastries. There.
Next, you are going to take a spoon and make a small well in the center of each one. This is going to be the swimming pool for the Jam you are going to put in. To make it easier, wet the back of the spoon. Or else the dough is just going to stick to the back of the spoon. You can really make it any size depending on how much jam you want them to have. We like a generous amount, so we make our wells a little larger. Typically, it’s about 1/2-1 teaspoon of jam. For this recipe you can use any flavor of jam that you want. We typically just use strawberry, because that is our favorite flavor. But you can be creative, and add any flavor your little heart desires! Place a small amount of jam into each of the wells you created. Be careful not to overfill them or it will start to run off the side while they are baking.
After the jam is added, place them in the oven and bake them for 10-15 minutes. Once they start to get lightly browned on the top you will know that they are done. If you bake them for too long, they will become very hard and dense once they are cooled.
After the danish are removed from the oven, place them on a cooling rack and allow them to cool for about 20 minutes. While the danish are cooling, you can prepare the icing that will be drizzled on top. Combine 2/3 cup of powdered sugar, 1 tablespoon of warm water and 1/4 teaspoon of either almond or vanilla extract (depending on your personal preference). Mix it all together in a small bowl until everything is mixed together. You want the icing to be loose enough that it can be easily drizzled on the danish. If you find that it is a little too thick, you can add a little bit more water to it.
Once they are cool, you can use a spoon to drizzle the icing on top of them. If you want to get really festive, you can add a little food coloring to the icing before you drizzle it on. Or add some jimmies! (We like to pretend we are in England).
*These are best if consumed within the first couple days after baking. If they sit out too long then the dough starts to absorb the jam and the icing and they get a little bit mushy.