Start taking the butter out of the fridge.
Ok, now you can go on reading.
When it comes to baking the harder the recipe looks, the more I will be likely to try it out. There is this myth that croissants are very hard to prepare, therefore I felt like this would be a nice challenge for my Friday evening.
Usually I use recipes just as a guideline. I replace this with that, add a bit more flour here and a bit less sugar there.. so it will be hard for me to tell you the exact recipe I used. Basically, the recipe is based on this one, but, as I said, I changed a lot.
Warning: you will need time and a book/guitar/music/a good movie (one that you can pause). I used a tv series and some music.
The ingredients I used are white flour, whole wheat flour, dry yeast, honey, milk, water, an egg, vanilla flavor, chocolate, salt, and, well, butter of course! I’m afraid to say the quantities, because we don’t have any scales, yet and I just did what I thought might go. I made 8 small croissants; 6 already disappeared.
In a small pan I heatened up about half a glass of milk with half a glass of water (we use glasses and handfuls instead of cups and tablespoons over here!). Stirred in a teaspoon of honey and two teaspoons of dry yeast. Set aside until bubbled formed on the surface.
Meanwhile I took the soft butter, I would say 70 grams, 3/4 of a glass or so, and stirred in some whole wheat flour, just until it became play-doh-like and malleable, but no so sticky anymore.
Going back to the yeast: it had the bubbles, so I poured it into a large bowl and added a tiny amount, just the tip of the teaspoon of vanilla flavor, salt, a teaspoon of honey and one egg. I stirred and started adding a little of white flour. Then another handful of whole wheat. Another of white.. and so on until a soft dough had formed.
I placed the dough on a piece of baking paper, covered it and placed it in the fridge for 30 minutes. I rolled the dough out into a rectangle. It was about 1/2 cm thick. Flour lightly. Then I took the butter that I previously set aside and molded it on 2/3 of the dough and folded the dough as a business letter. It harder to explain than to do it, if you don’t understand what I mean, you might want to look at my guideline recipe where it is explained and also photographed very well. It went back into the fridge again to come out another 30 minutes later and repeating the process of rolling out and folding. This has to be done at least four times.When you have done this for the last time you can cover, place in the fridge once again, and go to sleep.
This morning (the morning after), I woke up at 7.30 because I was too excited to see how the croissants would turn out. I preheated the oven at 200 C, then took the dough out of the fridge, rolled it out until it was about 1/2 cm thick and cut the dough with a knife into long triangles.
I placed one small square of chocolate on the dough, more at the wide end of the triangle, and rolled the croissants up. They stayed in the oven for about 20 minutes and came out with a nice crunchy crust, soft inside and filled with melted chocolate.
It was grey outside, and it was starting to rain again. I woke R. up and we had a very nice breakfast talking about our week and the plans for the weekend.
I hope you will try these out, they are not so hard after all, you just need patience.
PS: I created a portfolio for my photography, if you like my photos please visit it, and let me know!