Danish Food Culture and Cooking Recipes

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Danish Specialities and Recipes
Patty Shells - "Tarteletter"
Old National and Provincial Everyday Dish with Rural roots.
The Danes consume 40 million Patty Shells - every year!
"Tarteletter". Patty Shells or croustade is a hallow-shaped cup of baked puff pastry also called Tart Shells. The puff pastry was invented by a French pastry Chef - Claudius Gele - around 1645. He discovered that by folding pastry dough in many layers - obtained a special crunchy baked puff pastry - a recipes still used today by professionals baking patty shells. The first filled patty shells to be eaten in Denmark were in the late 19th century - and for many decades considered as an upper-class gourmet dish. The first cookbook that described the recipes - was from 1842 by Danish cookbook author Madame Mangor - and in 1880 by recognized cookbook author Louise Nim. In 1900 - the patty shell with various fillings slowly became an everyday common meal in the Danish household - and especially in rural regions around Denmark it became a hit on the dining table - and is still a very popular country dish up to our time. The dish has become more provincial during this century - and the Copenhageners eat patty shells with quite a sense of humour. There are more than 110 recipes and different ways of making the patty shell fillings and over 40 million patty shells with appropriate fillings are consumed every year in Denmark. In 1901 - the recipes with chicken mixed with asparagus is mentioned for the first time in Miss Jensen’s cookbook. During the last 20 years the patty shell with filling has had a successful renaissance.

Creamed Chicken with asparagus in Patty Shells

Creamed Chicken with asparagus
("Tarteletter" med kylling i asparges)
The dish is over 150 years old and has been a traditional everyday meal for generations of Danes that just want to taste some crispy puff pastry with a tasty filling. One of the most popular recipes is Creamed Chicken with asparagus in Patty Shells.

500 gram
1 can
1 dl
0,5 dl
25 gram
2 tablespoons


Chicken breasts
Asparagus pieces
Whole milk - 3,5 %
Whipping cream - 38%

Liquid from a
sparagus can

Luxury patty shells

Chicken Fill for Patty Shells
Creamed Chicken with asparagus is one of the recipes and filling mix for patty shells - and mentioned the first time in Miss Jensen's cookbook from 1901.
Seafood Fill for Patty Shells
Seafood fill with shrimps - lobster tails - salmon with fish balls is a delicious variation to fill the warm crispy patty shells.
Follow me step by step...

Creamed Chicken in Patty Shells

Recipes for 12 patty shells
- Wash the chicken breasts thoroughly under cold running water. Part the chicken breasts
in regular pieces and place them in a pot that is covered with water - salt and vegetables - and boil it approx. for 1 to 1½ hours depending on size of pieces - the meat should be tender. Remove regularly the foam from the water surface with a spoon. Chicken meat is very juicy and the broth is used for the creamed sauce.

- Take the meat up and put it to cool on platter or plate. Save the water. The meat is cut into smaller pieces about 400 to 500 grams for this recipes. The rest can be used for other purposes.

- Asparagus liquid is passed through a sieve into a saucepan. Add milk and cream and boil gently. Mix flour and butter together in a cup or small bowl for a butter bun. Add the butter bun to the liquid. After some minutes it cooked out after which the sauce is whipped thoroughly and boil for 5 to 10 minutes.

- When the sauce is cooked through - add chicken and asparagus pieces in - while stirring lightly.

- Meanwhile warm the patty shells upside down in an oven. Then fill the 12 tart shells with the warmed creamed chicken with asparagus.

- Serve the warm crispy patty shells with the creamy delicious fill inside.

Fill variation with Seafood
-1 tablespoon butter and flour
-1 can of fish balls with bouillon
-1 dl cream 38%
-1 can chopped asparagus
-200 g shrimps
-100 g lobster tails
-100 g bits of salmon
-1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- Salt & pepper
- Fresh parsley

Stir a smooth butterball - then put in the fish balls and fish bouillon. Add cream and stir to a smooth consistency - then ad rest of the ingredients - and season to your taste with salt and pepper. Fill the warm Patty Shell with the warm Seafood fill and top up with fresh parsley.

Ready-made fillings for patty shells
You can also buy various ready-made fillings for patty shells in supermarkets and grocery stores - and a choice of patty shells too.

See Eating and traditional Danish food culture

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