312 - Go for an authentic Danish

By Lauren Gosnell

The Danish Pastry Shop is a true gem in the city’s east end. The small store is lined with irresistible treats. True enough, they sell “danishes” as we know them, but as owner Kim Hansen explains, those are American-style rolls with fruit jam fillings.

In Denmark, Weinerbrød or Viennese bread is what Danes really consider to be an authentic Danish pastry. Made from a yeast dough and prepared in layers like buttery puff pastry, it is the cardamom and almond paste that distinguishes Weinerbrød as Danish.

KringleThe same dough is the basis for kringle – a special-occasion dessert shaped like a giant pretzel. Folded inside the dough is either marzipan or walnut paste, more cardamom spicing and a sprinkling of raisins.

Once moulded into shape, the kringle is dusted with powdered sugar, almond slivers, walnut flakes or sometimes a layer of melted chocolate. A small bite of kringle dissolves in your mouth like a buttery wafer.

The ultimate celebratory Danish special order is the kransekage or wreath cake. It is a series of concentric almond pastry rings neatly piled on top of each other like a stacking toy. It is the traditional Danish wedding cake, often decorated with red and white sugar roses and miniature Danish flags and crowned with the initials of the bride and groom.

Hansen’s Danish Pastry Shop
1017 Pape Ave.
Toronto, Ontario