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(Experiment 99) Croissant

Haaa croissant. Is there anything more French than a croissant? I don’t think so but the reality is, they don’t even come from France. What? Yes, they come from Austria! 

In any case, making croissant just like making sourdough bread is not hard but it takes time. In my opinion, it’s time well spent.

This is my interpretation of this recipe from Joshua. 

 Just like any good bread, this is a 2 days process as you want to give it ample time to rest. If you have ever done sourdough bread, some of the techniques will be familiar.

You need : 

  • 140g European style butter
  • 6g active dry yeast
  • 30g sugar
  • 5g salt
  • 250g bread flour
  • 25g melted butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 130g water
  • 1 egg

Instructions

  1. Put the water in a glass container and microwave it for about 20 seconds. If you have a thermometer use it and make sure the water is around 100F, no more than 110F. If you don’t, 15 seconds will usually make the water around 85ish which is a bit lower but it’s better than too high as this would kill the yeast. Stir the yeast in and give it 5-10 minutes to bloom.
  2. In a mixing bowl put the salt, flour, and sugar and combine them. Pour the yeast mixture along with the egg yolk and the melted butter. Mix it all together using your hand until you can form a ball, knead it a little bit. Put the dough on a countertop ( no flour), do some flap, and fold ( see video for demonstration) for about a minute or until the texture of the dough gets smooth. Re-shape into a ball, put it in a bowl, cover, and put in the fridge for 10 minutes. 
  3. Take it out of the fridge and perform a set of stretches and fold ( see video here) . Flip it 180 so that the seams are at bottom of the bowl, cover, and place it back in the fridge for another 10 minutes.
  4. Repeat the previous step. Afterward, place it back in the fridge but this time for 25 minutes.
  5. Next, you need to roll your dough into a 7×7 square. There are multiple techniques for this, you can do this into wax paper or into a Ziploc bag. You need to make sure it makes a flat surface with square corners.
  6. Place in the fridge overnight. 

    Day 2 
  7. You need to make a 4″x4″ butter square, again using wax paper or parchment works well. Tip cut your 138g of butter in an even thickness slice. It makes the whole process easier. Use a rolling pin to flatten the butter to the desired size and place it in the fridge for 25 minutes 
  8. On a lightly floured surface, lay your dough and gently press each corner. You just want to elongate them a little. Place the butter on the dough tilted 45 degrees. You then need to encase the butter in the dough by pulling each corner toward the center, pinch the seams. Try your best not to trap air. Flip it 180 so the seam faces the countertop. Let it rest 5 minutes 
  9. Lightly flour the top of the dough and using your rolling pin, press ( don’t roll) lightly across the dough. This will help spread the butter inside the dough. Rotate 90 degrees and do it again. 
  10. Flip the dough so seams face you and now using the rolling pin, roll the dough into a rectangle about 18″ long. Avoid doing back and forth, it’s best to always go in the same direction. 
  11. Once there, fold one end 3/4 of the way unto the dough, then fold the other edge back. Basically, the seam will meet. Pat the dough down so they stick, then fold the side where you did the 3/4 unto the smaller one. This will make a small rectangle. 
  12. Use the rolling pin to lightly tap it down on the dough so all layers stick together. You just completed the first of two fold. Cover in plastic film and put in the fridge for an hour.  
  13. Again, lightly flour the countertop and repeat the same process again to 18″ long. Now for the folding fold, one edge 1/3 then fold the other edge above it ( closing the now square shape). Wrap in plastic wrap for at least an hour ( up to 12). 
  14. Lightly flour the work surface and roll the dough into about a 10″x10″ square. The thickness should be around 1/4″. If the dough is resisting, cover and place in the fridge for 20-30 minutes and try again. 
  15. Make a small mark every 2 or 3″ at the bottom ( you can use any size you desire). Then find the middle in between marks and make a mark but on the TOP of the dough. Using a chef knife cut using the top/bottom marks ( this will make a triangle) 
  16. Take one triangle shape and gently elongate it a little ( ~1inch more, if it resists stop). You then need to roll them, start from the wide end and very tightly roll them. Gently squeeze the tip.
  17. Cover a baking tray with parchment paper and put the now shaped croissant. Ensure the little tip is somewhat underneath so it doesn’t unroll. 
  18. Beat the egg with a little bit of water and using a brush lightly cover the croissant with egg wash. Put in the oven with the door closed for 2 hours.
  19. Give them a second layer of egg wash. 
  20. Bake in the oven at 390F for 6 minutes then reduce to 330 for 10-15 minutes.

These are best enjoyed like 10 minutes after coming out of the oven 😉 Realistically, they will stay good 2 days at room temperature but you can also freeze them. Either thaw them overnight in the fridge and heat them up in the oven or straight from frozen to the oven at 200F. Time will vary greatly depending on their size. 


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