After countless requests, here goes... THE National Danish Coffeecake. Do not add salt - Danes never do.

  • 1 cake yeast (we've never used powdered - ugh.)
  • 2 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 cup scalded, cooled milk
  • 1/2 cup Lukewarm water (or Matt, Mark or John-warm)
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. margarine
  • 3-4 cups flour (unsifted is fine, actually)

1/2 tsp. cardemom (Cardemom can be omitted, but BUY it anyway. It's a nice-smelling spice, related to cinnamon. Linda suggests you pour a dab in your shoes when your feet sweat.) 

Blend all but flour, then gradually add flour, knead dough. It should not be tough, but not gooey either. (If gooey, then sprinkle up to 1/2 cup more flour into dough - maximum 4-1/2 cups flour in all.) Let dough rest 10 minutes, then sprinkle lightly flour onto a rolling surface and rolling pin. With a light touch, roll dough into 1/2-inch thick square cake, 14" x 14".

1. Thinly slice 4 tbsp. cold butter and distribute it over 1/2 of rolled-out dough. Slap it closed, 1/2 over the other.

2. Roll out once again, using a light touch with rolling pin, lifting the dough often. use flour sparingly - this is the secret for a light, flaky "Kringle."

3. Repeat steps one and two, twice.

4. Finally roll dough out to a 10" x 16" layer 1/4- to 1/2-inch thick and cut lengthwise in two. Sprinkle 1 cup raisins over the middle of the two long pieces. Spoon cooled filling into the middle of each strip.

5. Gently lay one edge on top of filling, then the other. Baste with egg white and sprinkle sugar on top. Bake at 325°F for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Bon Appetit!

– Linda Schmidt