Every Christmas morning that I can remember I woke up to the smell of Danish Puff. Besides my kooky family and their odd shenanigans, eating and smelling Danish Puff is my favorite Christmas memory.

And, boys, I hope that I can work it so that Danish Puff is high on your list of happy Christmas memories. Even better, I would love it to be something that we make together because there is a moment of absolute chemical magic in the making of this bad boy.

You know, I didn’t make this until I was 42 years old. It took your grandmother getting cancer for me to make this one. That’s because she always told me it took two hours to make, which was only a little misinformation. I was always happy to sit back and let her do it. But this Thanksgiving (2011) to help out your grandmother I decided to make the food. And since we all were having two Thanksgiving dinners that night, I suggested we change one to a brunch. And what better to start out with than our favorite family breakfast item?

It isn’t the fasted thing to make. But the time served is certainly worth the end product. So, while I don’t normally spend much time thinking or pining about the future, I certainly see you guys in kitchen patting out the crusts for these tasty pastries.

Danish Puff

Ingredients:

Puff Base
1 cup flour
1/2 cup butter
2 tbsp water

Puff Custard
1/2 cup butter
1 cup water
1 tsp almond extract
1 cup flour
3 separate eggs, each slightly beaten

Puff Icing
3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
some milk
some sliced almonds

Directions:

Heat oven to 350.

Put first cup of flour into bowl and cut in butter. Sprinkle with 2 tbs. water and mix with fork.

Round into ball and divide in half.

Put in fridge for a while to let it stiffen for about 20 minutes.

Remove from fridge and, on ungreased cookie sheet, pat into two strips about 12″ by 3″. Place 3″ apart.

*****

Bring water to a boil and add the stick of butter.

Once it melts remove pan from heat and add almond extract.

Slowly beat in flour, stirring quickly to prevent lumping.

When smooth, add one egg at a time, beating well after each egg until smooth.*

Divide in half and spread one half evenly on each pastry base.

Bake for 1 hour. Center should still be moist and custardy.

*****

Put a little milk into the bowl with the powdered sugar and mix until smooth, but not too liquidy.

Add just a hint of almond flavoring.

Drizzle over finished puffs.

Sprinkle with sliced almonds.

*NOTE: When you add the first egg to the warm flour/water/butter mixture, it may turn your stomach. It becomes the weirdest nauseating looking alien gloop you could imagine. But keep stirring. It will turn back. It will do this with each egg you add. It’s a little bit of magic.