I have to give credit for this creation to my middle daughter. She loves to help me in the kitchen and has recently become very into watching those cooking videos that are so captivating! She loves to look at my news feed with me on weekend mornings and watch video after video. Last weekend she saw one for this candy cane cheese danish and her little eyes lit up. Immediately followed by all the modifications she wanted me to make to it. First up, it had to be strawberries for the red fruit, and texture was a must, can’t imagine where she gets that from. Trial, error and 4 days in a row of candy cane danish making later I feel we have a winner, a final recipe to share with all of you just in time for Christmas.
1 can original crescent dough
3/4 cup fresh strawberries
3 tablespoons plain cream cheese
3 tablespoons marshmallow fluff
1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar, divided
1/2 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon orange juice
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
1 teaspoon milk
1-2 tablespoons sliced almonds
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Next lay a giant piece of parchment paper directly onto your counter. Slice your fresh strawberries small, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of sugar and 1 teaspoon orange juice stir and set aside, this will help your berries to macerate (become sweeter and softer, releasing their juices to make a light sauce consistency). Now you will open up your dough and cut each triangle crescent roll in half lengthwise. Starting at the bottom of your parchment paper (be sure leave about an inch for when you move this to your baking sheet) layer your half triangles overlapping slightly until you use your whole tube of crescent rolls. Next pinch together and smush your overlapping dough pieces to form a surface for your filling, try to keep your straight end as even as possible so your candy cane doesn’t end up crooked. In a small bowl now mix together the marshmallow fluff and cream cheese until smooth, then spread evenly onto the flat long rectangular dough space you just created. Next evenly pour your berry mixture on top of your cream cheese mixture. Now things get a little tricky, starting again at the bottom fold over your skinny dough pieces one by one, pinching or tucking any remaining dough to the edge of your candy cane structure. Repeat this method until all of your dough pieces are folded over. Ok, time to make this look like a candy cane, I feel with any baking there comes a time for prayer or crossing fingers, this is that time. Slowly and gently, either using just your hands, or a really flat spatula take the top of your candy cane and begin to curve it. A good marker for me is to bend with about 5 sections left at the top for your curved edge of the candy cane. If it all falls apart when you go to move it don’t fret, just try your best to reshape it using the dough on the outsides and connecting those pieces back as best you can. Once you’re happy with your shape candy cane trim your parchments paper with scissors to fit your baking sheet, then place your baking sheet next to the candy cane on the counter. Melt your 1/2 tablespoon of butter in the microwave and brush over all the dough surfaces, tops and sides. Then gently slide your danish onto the baking sheet by pulling on one excess side of the parchment paper. This method works a lot better than trying to pick up your whole candy cane. Bake at 350 degrees for 18 minutes, then place on the stove top or covered counter to cool. A good 5-10 minutes should do it. While the danish cools, make your icing. Mix 1 tablespoon powdered sugar to 1 teaspoon milk. This will make a nice thick icing to top your candy cane, I only drizzle our icing on the dough parts, not the filling, if you want more icing be sure to double the recipe and drizzle away. Once your icing is on layer your sliced almonds over the dough pieces on top of the icing so that they stick. Now it’s time to slice and serve warm. If you have any leftovers seal in air tight container and keep in the fridge, be sure to eat within 3 days.
I hope the loads of pictures I took help to make this process easier. I got the idea for the filling from a fruit dip I make and love, it’s a little more solid than your traditional cream cheese and sugar danish filling. This worked like a charm so that less yummy filling spilled out when cutting into the danish. Now the bending of your dough to get the candy cane shape will be the hardest part, but here’s a secret, even if it doesn’t turn out perfect, or in a candy cane shape at all, it will still taste delicious!