Like classic sweet rolls, these too are fixtures of the Danish counter. The reason (probably), because the shape is so darn versatile. There are chocolate chip snails (like mine above), cinnamon sugar snails, cinnamon sugar and raisin snails, walnut and cinnamon sugar snails, pecan snails, almond filling snails and any-kind-of- jam-you-can-possibly-think-of snails. And none are more difficult to make than any others. In fact the only time I don’t like snails is when bakeries try to pass them off as cinnamon rolls. You can see how they could, especially if they’re made with cinnamon and iced. But true cinnamon rolls are made with brioche, and are their own distinctive pleasure. But I’m here to talk Danish, dernit!
Start by rolling out again about a pound and a half of Danish dough into a rectangle, this time maybe a little less than a 1/4 inch thick. Again, the exact dimensions don’t really matter that much. If you’re making chocolate chip or pecan snails, put down a thin layer of buttercream (otherwise lay down whatever you wish). Then scatter your chips — or whatever — over the sheet.
Gently turn in the top edge…
…and using both hands (only one pictured) roll the whole thing up.
Shore up the ends with your hand and roll the tube back and forth a little to solidify it a bit. The roll should be about an inch-and-a-half to two inches in diameter. If it isn’t, just roll it out with your palms like a baguette until it is. (Don’t forget to shore the ends up again afterward).
Now, using your trusty bench scraper (or a knife), cut them into roughly inch to inch-and-a-quarter-long pieces. Don’t worry if they’re a littl squished, you can squeeze them back into shape. (IMPORTANT NOTE: Never show fear before pastry, my friends, or you will never earn its respect).
Now all you need to do is peel back about the last inch or so from the roll…
…and tuck it underneath to keep it from unraveling in the oven.
Proof, brush with egg wash and bake just like you would classic sweet rolls. Drizzle with simple icing — or even chocolate — if you wish.