Vacationing in France brought upon a whole new world of culture, art, and culinary mastery. What was missed the most was the tiny bakery right outside our place of stay which offered fresh baked croissants in the early mornings before our daily adventures. Packing our bags, not only did I have to say goodbye to the place I may never see again but also to the best mornings I may ever have again.
However, I tend to be wrong.
These light, flakey, and butter croissants are delicious from sandwiches to soaking up soup!
“Warm, buttery, and flakey.”
Prep Time: 8 hours Total Time: 2 days Servings: 12 croissants
1 cup warm water
2 1/2 tablespoons active dry yeast
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons salt
6.5 tablespoons softened butter
For Tourage (folding process)
Combine warm water, yeast and 1 tablespoon of sugar (the yeast will feed on the sugar and grow). Cover with a cloth for about 3 minutes to allow the yeast to ferment.
Sift flour, salt, and sugar into a large mixing bowl. Combine yeast/water mixture then add the soften butter until well combined. Kneed on an un-floured surface for 5 minutes to develop the gluten (things will get very sticky but keep kneading and you will find that it becomes less so).
Form the dough into a ball and place back into the mixing bowl. Cover with a cloth and place into the warm oven (double checking the heat is off and it is not too hot). Allow the dough to rise for 2 hours or until doubled in size.
Deflate the dough, and scrape onto a floured surface. Pat into a flattened rectangular shape, then fold one end into the middle of the rectangle then fold the other end over top creating a square. Turn the dough and repeat in the opposite direction. Wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate over night.
Place 16.5 tablespoons of butter into a 7 by 8 inch ziplock bag. Pound/roll the butter edge to edge creating an even slab of butter. Place in the refrigerator until hardened. Once hardened, cut away the edges to remove the butter. Allow butter to sit at room temperature for at least 45 minutes to soften.
On a floured surface, roll the dough into a 15 inch by 7 inch rectangle. Place the butter slab on one half of the dough thenfold the other half completely over the butter slab.
Roll the dough out lengthwise until it measures 24 inches long then roll it width wise to measure 8 inches wide (if it begins to stick give it a dusting of flour and wipe off the excess).
Fold one end of the dough 3/4 of the way up the dough and the other end 1/4 of the way to meet the other end. Give it a quick roll and then fold the dough directly in half. Repeat this step. Roll out the dough until it measures 24 inches long then proceed to roll it 8 inches wide. Fold one end of the dough half way up and fold the other end over that.
Wrap and refrigerate for up to 1 hour.
Divide dough into two portions, keeping the other half in the fridge to keep as cold as possible. Roll out the other half to 18 inches long by 8 inches wide. Trim off the edges to create a perfect rectangle. Measuring 4 inches from the bottom of the dough make a mark with your knife to hold the spot, then measure 1/2 inch and make another mark. Repeat 3 more times. On the opposite side of the dough, measure 1/2 an inch and make a mark with your knife, then measure 4 inches and make a mark with your knife, and repeat 3 more times. Now, connect the marks by cutting through the dough, one side to the other making sure to go in order. You should cut out 6 triangles (remember to take your time as this part may be tricky the first time around).
Laying the dough so the widest end of the triangle is furthest from you and the tip is closest to you (be gentle as the dough is very soft and prone to stretching), roll from the widest end all the way to the tip (be gently and try not to press the dough as you roll). If you find the dough begins to stick to the table, simply add a little flour.
Place your croissants on a sheet try lined with parchment paper. Give enough room (8 typically fit comfortably on a half sheet pan) and allow to rise for 2 hours at room temperature.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Crack one egg and beat well with a pinch of salt. Using a brush or your fingers, lightly coat the croissants with the egg wash. Once the oven is up to temperature, bake for 10 minutes, then lower the temperature to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for 12 minutes.
*Keep the dough cold at all times. When the dough sits out, the butter melts which causes the flakey layers to disappear.
Nutrition Information %Daily Value
Serving Size: 1 Serving *Based on a 2000 calorie diet
Calories: 428 Added Sugars: 4g Vitamin A 21%
Total Fat: 24g Vitamin B6 3%
Saturated Fat: 15g Vitamin B12 2%
Cholesterol: 61mg Vitamin C 0%
Sodium: 586mg Vitamin D 3%
Potassium: 77mg Iron 33%
Total Carbohydrates: 48g Calcium 2%
Dietary Fiber: 2g Riboflavin 25%
Protein: 7g Folate 47%