What is a Kringle? It is a Danish yeast cake which is traditionally baked in a pretzel shape. I guess that is why the portions of Kringle dough is so large because you would need a good amount to make it into the classic pretzel shape. However, it’s quite common for most people to shape them into a rectangle instead. The original recipe would have made 4 cakes which is too much for us here at home, although I could easily have followed that recipe and frozen the remainder down…they freeze well 🙂 But I decided to cut the recipe in half. It worked out very well and the only little hick-up I encountered was that instead of having an odd measurement of 1 1/2 large eggs ?? in the recipe, I went with an even 2 large eggs instead. The result was that I had to add a wee-bit more flour and the outcome was a very soft and pliable dough and an amazing crumb in the final cake. As with any yeast cake it is always best served same day it is baked.
Just wanted to share with you that this particular recipe comes from a lady named Anne Margrethe who lives in Hirtshals, Denmark. Her Kringle recipe was featured on a Danish television show hosted by Søren Ryge and he declared it “Denmark’s best Kringle”. I must say that it is super delicious!
Kringle (makes 2 Kringler)
For the dough:
1 deciliter water (3.4 fluid oz or 100 ml)
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast (or 25 grams cake/fresh yeast)
2 tablespoons sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
a pinch of salt
150 grams salted butter, cut into small cubes, room temperature
325 grams all-purpose flour
For the Remonce:
115 grams butter
115 grams sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
Other fillings: optional
50 grams raisins
25 grams blanched almonds, chopped
1 egg, for egg wash
Pearl sugar (or regular sugar)
To make dough: Using hot water, confirm that the water is between 100 to 110 degrees F (no more than 110 degrees). Pour warm water into a large bowl, add 1 tablespoon of the sugar and sprinkle yeast over water, let sit for 10 minutes. Add remaining sugar, eggs, a pinch of salt, butter and flour. Using your hands, mix all ingredients until dough comes together. Dough may feel a little tacky and there may still be small pieces of butter, that is OK. Transfer dough to a clean bowl, cover with a clean, dry tea-towel, place bowl in a warm location and let rise for 1 hour.
To make Remonce filling, place butter in a small saucepan and heat over low heat until almost all melted. Add sugar and cinnamon. Remove from stove and stir until all sugar is melted with the butter. Butter and sugar may be separating, that is OK as it will come back together as it cools. Allow to cool, place in refrigerator if needed. The end result should be like a thick paste.
Rolling out dough: For easy clean-up, place two long pieces of plastic wrap (cling wrap) onto your work surface. Sprinkle plastic wrap with flour and give the dough a quick soft kneading, sprinkle with a little more flour until dough is soft and elastic, and no longer sticky. Divide dough into two portions and form each piece of dough into a log. Working with one log at the time, roll out the log (on top of the plastic wrap) to approximately 30 x 15 centimeter rectangle (11.5 x 6 inches). Spread 1/2 the Remonce filling down the middle of each dough rectangle and sprinkle with raisins and almonds. Fold the ends over about 2 cm (almost 1 inch) then fold the outer 1/3 of dough over the middle and then the other outer 1/3 of dough over the middle again. Holding onto the plastic wrap, roll dough rectangle over so it’s now placed upside-down (seam side down). Carefully place dough rectangle onto baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat process with second piece of dough. If planning on baking both Kringler at this time, allow both dough rectangles to rise for another 15 minutes on the baking sheet before baking.
Freezing: If you are planning on freezing the unbaked Kringle, wrap it up in parchment paper and then foil (or a large zip lock bag if you have one). When ready to bake, thaw in refrigerator for 24 hours, then place on parchment paper at room temperature for 1 hour before baking.
Baking: Preheat oven to 220 degrees C (425 degrees F). Lightly beat egg with a fork and brush dough with egg wash. Sprinkle with Pearl sugar and almonds. Bake for 12-14 minutes on middle rack in preheated oven. Allow to cool on baking sheet. Enjoy!
Source: adapted from Anne Magrethe i Hirtshals