Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Daring Bakers-Buttery Croissants

The Daring Bakers go retro this month! Thanks to one of our very talented non-blogging members, Sarah, the Daring Bakers were challenged to make Croissants using a recipe from the Queen of French Cooking, none other than Julia Child!

I have made croissants before and I know they take a long time, not in actual work, but in between folds to chill the dough.  The great thing about croissants though is that they can be frozen after shaping, so you can go ahead and double the recipe and freeze extra ones.

This recipe was straight forward and worked great, the steps are described very well. I would like to add that by starting with a well shaped rectangle both of dough and of butter helps keep the final dough more neat and easy to cut and shape.  Chilling the dough in between turns is essential for that, so don't rush those steps.

Chocolate almond-frangipane croissant

I made two different doughs, one following the given recipe, the other, chocolate croissants, inspired by the amazingly fast and helpful Audax.  In his version Audax substituted four tablespoons of flour with and equal amount of cocoa powder.  I used Valrhona cocoa powder and it gave a beautiful hue to the croissants but it was so hard to tell when they were done as they were pretty dark to start with.

Poppy seeds walnuts croissant

Here are my notes...I let the dough do the second proofing in the fridge overnight for convenience. I found the recipe easy to follow, however at the end I got frustrated when rolling the dough to its final size.  It was impossible to keep the dough to a width of 5 inches, so I ended up having a much thinner dough to reach the 20" in length.  Next time I will double the dough and roll to a different size rectangle so I would be able to cut nice symmetrical triangles.  Having rectangles that weren't symmetrical caused the croissants to be lopsided.  I also would have liked to know the final thickness of the dough to avoid rolling too thing and compacting the layers.  I used regular all-purpose flour so I had to add a little bit more than the 1 3/4 cups the recipe calls for, but that wasn't a problem.  Last but not least, I baked the croissants at 420F after almost burning the first batch, that was very especially important with the croissants with the filling.

I got the 7 steps!

I made two fillings for the regular dough, an almond frangipane, and a walnut poppy seed filling, both delicious.  The plain croissants were nice, flaky, with a great crumb.

Plain croissant showing a nice crumb

To see other amazing creations and download the recipe go to the Daring Bakers' site.  Thank you Sarah for choosing this recipe and to Lisa of La Mia Cucina and Ivonne of Cream Puffs in Venice, the creators of the Daring Bakers' challenge. 

For a great informative post on shaping croissants check this link at The Fresh Loaf.

On a light note, we have four new little ones at home, they came from Trader Joe's fertilized eggs, incubated by our broody hen.  Aren't they cute?

See what happens if you don't enjoy by the expiration date...

I wish I knew what type of chicken they will become


Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Well done! Beautiful croissanta and cute chicks.



Simona said...

Great croissants and totally adorable chicks!

Jo said...

Very pretty croissants and very cute chicks! I am jealous, I'd love to have chickens, we just don't have a good spot in the yard for them.

Anonymous said...

Nothing better than a homemade croissant, i have a cheats version that takes an hour and perfect for a quick fix on a Sunday morning!

Renata said...

Homemade croissants and homemade chicks... you're amazing! They are cute!!
Your croissants look fantastic! Really professional!

Audax said...

WOW I adore the colour so dark and shiny (I love it) and the great about the chicks so cute. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

Lisa said...

Wow, Laura, your croissants are french patisserie perfect - so beautiful! I love the chocolate - almond frangipane and poppy seed rakes on it too..wish I could tast the former right now! So creative! A big AWWW to those little chickadees!!

pastry said...

From volume and lightness to colour and glossy crust,very professional results. Well done!

kellypea said...

This is making me want to make croissants! It's been so long, and I'm such a poop for not keeping up with my Daring Baker responsibilities. Good ol' Audex. He always has great ideas. The chocolate sounds wonderful. And your chicks? So, so, so very cute. Sweet little things!

Laura said...

Thanks every one for stopping by.

Jo, happy chickens need lots of space and a safe coop, sorry to hear you can't have them. I have to admit that they are more fun than I suspected.


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