large bowl combine the flour, yeast, sugar, and malt powder. Then stir in the salt. With your
fingertips work the butter into the dry ingredients until the butter is in small
pieces and coated with flour. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the water
and milk. With a bench scraper or wooden spoon, gradually work the flour into the liquid, making sure
that the dry ingredients are moistened. Then using your hands, work
the dough for a minute or two to make sure all the dry ingredients are
thoroughly moistened. At this point the dough will be a sticky mass. Cover the bowl loosely
with plastic wrap and let it ferment for about one hour (helps to develop flavor
and aroma) at room temperature (75 - 78 degrees F) (24 - 26 degrees C) .
After an hour transfer the
dough to a lightly floured surface and press or roll the dough into a 14 x 10
inch (35 x 25 cm) rectangle. Transfer to a lightly floured baking sheet, sprinkle the top of
the dough lightly with flour, cover with plastic wrap, and place in the
refrigerator for at least six hours (or overnight).
About 15 minutes before you
want to laminate the dough, take a
sheet of parchment paper and draw a 10 x 7 inch (25 x 18 cm) rectangle on the paper. Flip the
paper over. Take your cold butter and cut it into six pieces. Place the cold
butter within the drawn lines on your parchment paper and enclose it in the
parchment. With your rolling pin pound the cold butter to soften it a little.
Then fold the parchment paper to make a 10 x 7 inch rectangle (like an envelope) and roll the
butter until it fits this size. Make sure the butter is of even thickness. At
this point you want the butter to be cold but still pliable. It needs to be at
the same temperature as the dough. If it's too soft then place in the
refrigerator for about 15 minutes.
Rolling out the dough
(lamination): The temperature of the
dough is important when rolling it out. It is best that your kitchen is cool.
However, I have found you can cool your countertop by running an ice pack over
the surface before rolling.
Remove the sheet of dough and
your butter from the refrigerator. Peel off the parchment paper from the butter
and place the butter onto the center of your dough. Wrap the edges of the dough over the
butter so they meet in the center. Press lightly to seal the edges. (The edges
of the dough and the butter should be even.)
First Turn: Transfer the
dough to a lightly floured surface with the sealed edges running vertical. With
your rolling pin gently tap the dough and then roll the dough vertically into a
22 x 8 inch (55 x 20 cm) rectangle. Lift the dough frequently as you roll so the dough
doesn't stick. Flour as necessary. Roll end to end, not side to side, making sure the dough is of
even thickness. When it's at the correct length and width, fold the dough
lengthwise into thirds, like you're folding a letter. Make sure the edges of the
dough are straight and even. You now have your first turn.
Second Turn: Rotate the
dough 90 degrees so the folded edge is on your left (like the binding of a
book). Repeat the process of rolling your dough to 22 x 8 inches (55 x 20 cm) and fold the
dough again into thirds. This is now your second turn. Place the dough on a
lightly floured baking sheet, lightly flour the top of the dough, cover with plastic wrap, and place in the
refrigerator to chill one hour.
Third Turn: Take the
chilled dough and repeat the rolling and folding into thirds one more time. This
is your third turn. Again, place your dough on a floured baking sheet, flour the
top of the dough, cover, and
refrigerate one hour.
Sheeting: On a lightly floured
surface roll your dough into a 16 x 9 inch (40 x 23 cm) rectangle. Again, place
on a lightly floured baking sheet, lightly flour the top, cover, and refrigerate
30-60 minutes (at this point the dough can be stored overnight in the
Shaping the Croissants:
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Make a triangular template from a
piece of hard plastic or cardboard that measures about 3 3/4 inches (9.5 cm) across
the base and about 9 inches (23 cm) high. On a lightly floured surface roll your
dough into a 24 x 9 inch (61 x 23 cm) rectangle. Make sure to lift the dough frequently so it
doesn't stick and this also allows the dough to shrink back. Then trim the
long edges of the dough with a sharp knife or pizza wheel. Use the template as a
guide to cut the dough into 11 triangles.
Working with one triangle at a
time, hold the wide end of the
triangle in one hand and using your other hand, gently run your hand down the
length of the dough to lengthen it. Then place the triangle on your surface
and cut a small slit in the center of the wide end of your dough. Starting at
the wide end, roll the dough into a crescent shape. Do this gently as you don't
want to compress the layers. Place on your baking sheet
and repeat with the remaining triangles.
In a small bowl whisk the egg
with the egg yolks. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the tops and sides of
each croissant. Place each baking sheet in a large plastic bag and let proof for
about 1 1/2 to 2 hours at room temperature (75 - 78 degrees F) (24 - 26 degrees C). You
know the croissants are proofed when you gently shake your baking sheet, the
croissants will wiggle. Also the croissants will be soft to the touch.
Preheat your oven to 400
degrees (200 degrees C). Place your oven racks in the upper and lower thirds of
Brush the Croissants again with
the egg wash. Place the two baking sheets of Croissants in the preheated oven
and bake 10 minutes. Rotate your baking sheet top to bottom and front to back.
Reduce your oven temperature to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) and bake for an
additional 10 minutes or until golden brown and firm to the touch.
Remove from oven and place on a
wire rack to cool. Croissants are best the day they're made.
about 11 Croissants.
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