Delicious home-baked Croissants!

This morning our house was filled with that delicious aroma that is the smell of things baking in the oven! The other day I bought some croissants from the bakery at the supermarket. They were so tasty, I decided to see if I could make some myself! I told DF about it and we decided that we would embark on this pastry journey together! After several hours of rolling and refrigerating yesterday, we were so excited to finally be able to sample our delicious snacks for breakfast this morning! After fifteen minutes they were done and went straight from the oven onto our plates and into our hungry tummies! I was very pleased by the result and although they still need a little perfecting, I reckon that they were pretty good for a first attempt! Ils étaient très délicieux! Very yummy indeed! I love how they’re crispy on the outside, yet deliciously soft and buttery on the inside. I always have mine with butter and Nutella, though Chris prefers his with strawberry jam! I think this is definitely something I want to make a regular occurrence although not too regular – the amount of butter in this is atrocious! Surely not good for the waistline, but hey, the holiday season is upon us so I figure why not! Indulging in French food is something I enjoy, however don’t make nearly enough time for. I love it and I think everyone could do with a little bit of France in their day! If you want to try these tasty treats you can find the recipe here, although I will post it below. But first…

A few things about

Croissants are probably one of the most iconic french foods out there (and slightly more palatable than l’escargots..) but it might interest you to know that the decadent croissant is actually the baby cousin of the older Kipferl – A Viennese bread roll from Austria. Over the years, there have been many stories which tell of the croissant and it’s history. In one such story, they were invented in Europe to celebrate the defeat of the Umayyad forces at the Battle of ours by the Franks in 732. The shape is said to represent the Islamic crescent. In another story, they invented in Vienna in 1683 to celebrate the defeat of the ottomans by Christian forces and supposedly it’s shape is a reference to the crescents on the ottoman flags. To make a croissant the dough is layered with butter, rolled and folded several times in succession, then rolled into a sheet, in a technique called laminating. The process results in a layered, flaky texture, similar to a puff pastry and is very delicious!

How to make Croissants – recipe found on BBC Food

This is a lengthy process which requires a lot of rolling and chilling + it has to sit over night. Great to prepare if you’re bored on a rainy! The pastry can be frozen and thawed when you want to make more. We halved the mixture and got eight lovely croissants for breakfast this morning.

You will need:

  • 625g/1lb 5oz/ 2 and a half cups strong white flour, plus extra for rolling out
  • 12g/½oz/ 2tsp  salt
  • 75g/3oz/ 5tbsp sugar
  • 20g/¾oz/ 2 and a half sachets dried yeast
  • 500g/1lb 2oz butter, chilled
  • 8 sticks chocolate (optional)
  • 1 free-range egg, beaten

To prepare:

  1. Place the flour, salt, sugar and yeast in a large mixing bowl. Using a wooden spoon, slowly mix in a little water until the mixture forms into a pliable dough.
  2. Place the dough on a floured surface and knead until it feels elastic.
  3. Return the dough to the bowl, cover and chill in the refrigerator for an hour.
  4. Return the chilled dough to your floured work surface and roll it into a rectangle, around 60x30cm/24x12in.
  5. Roll out the chilled butter into a rectangle about 1cm/½in thick, around 20x30cm/8x12in.
  6. Place the butter rectangle in the centre of the dough rectangle, so it covers the middle third of the dough.
  7. Fold each side of the dough over the butter, so there is one layer of dough on the bottom, a layer of butter, then two layers of dough.
  8. Wrap the dough in cling film and chill in the fridge for another hour.
  9. Lightly flour the worktop and roll out the dough to a rectangle, around 60x30cm/24x12in. Repeat the folding process, folding the long sides into the middle, then return the dough to the fridge for a further hour.
  10. Repeat this process of folding and chilling two more times, then wrap the dough in cling film and set it aside to rest overnight
  11. Using a rolling pin, roll out the rested dough to 3mm/1/8in thick
  12. Either use a croissant cutter to cut triangles or cut the rolled out dough into squares, each 20cm/8in square
  13. Cut each square diagonally, making two triangles.
  14. Place the dough triangles on a lightly floured surface with the right angle away from you
  15. Roll the croissant towards the right angle point and curl the dough roll around into a traditional crescent shape. If using chocolate, add the chocolate across the widest part of the triangle, before rolling it up
  16. Place the shaped croissants on baking trays lined with baking parchment and leave to rise for 1½ hrs
  17. Preheat the oven to 200C/425F/Gas 6
  18. Lightly egg-wash the croissants and bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown.

Enjoy!

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