Sunday, August 30, 2009

Croissants


Well, this blog is officially ALL OVER THE PLACE. It is struggling to find a new identity to reinvent itself, to figure out what it story really IS.... (not unlike myself of late.. .but i digress...). This weekend's forecast was rain rain rain. The effects of hurricane Danny(?). So I decided to make croissants. This was a three day affair-- as you'll see me in three different outfits. haha. I am so proud of the results. The taste test is tomorrow, but they look convincing and the whole house smells like a Parisian bakery!!

To make croissants, you must first make a yeast dough and a butter block. No joke, a BLOCK of butter. These are both refrigerated for hours so they reach the same temperature before you start rolling them out together and folding them (quite a labor of love, I must say).

Here you will witness the "first turn":

Removing the butter block and dough combo from the fridge..



Here I'm talking to dear husband saying "don't take a photo yet.. I'm just taking it out of the fridge!!"


Again, dear husband does not take heed, and snaps a photo of the dough transfer from cookie sheet to counter top.

The second turn being caught on "film"!

So after multiple "turns" which is basically rolling out the dough, then folding it like a letter, refrigerating it for hours and rolling it out again, folding it again etc.... Then it had to sit in the fridge for a number of hours. Luck would have it, today the rain cleared so we went to the pool! I came home in a frenzy to complete my croissant adventure tonight. I had to do the final roll-out and shaping of croissants in my bathing suit!!! haha.


I was worried that my inaugural croissant dough may have lacked in butter/dough layers. When I do it again I may take a different approach to the butter block. That said, I though my poor attempt at croissants might benefit from a filling! I whipped up an almond "fragipane" to wrap inside each one...


You then have to "proof" the croissants in a warm oven with a dish of steaming water for an hour and a half. The dough rises/expands and here's what they look like:

They are starting to look convincing!



Into the oven they go....





Wow, not that bad!!!


Yummers!




I am so pleased with the results. Tomorrow will be the true test-- an actual tasting! ... but I must say they look and smell very legitimate! We'll see how they taste and next time I'm thinking pain au chocolate or those lovely puff pastry elephant ears.... hmmmm....

4 comments:

  1. Wow! I never knew that making croissants was so involved...I just know how good they are. You are good; I don't know if I could wait before trying one (OK...I know I would not be able to wait!). Looking forward to reading your update; I know these croissants will be worth the wait! Cindy

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  2. the gardeners cottageAugust 31, 2009 at 8:48 PM

    Hi Julia,

    I have to really hand it to you. Making croissants are HARD. I know because in culinary school we had to make them during baking class. We could take turns rolling/rotating the dough. They were delicious, but too much work for me to do at home! Enjoy.

    Janet

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  3. Wow Julia, I had no idea they were so involved! I think it might be easier to just pop over to France;) They look gorgeous, and I can't believe you didn't gobble one to test! You have way more will-power than I!!
    joan

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  4. Way to go, Julia! Those look delicious.

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