This week was…Pastry week! Well, it’s not over yet, because I’m obsessed. Obsessed. Who knew making pastry could be so therapeutic? It’s like magic! I tried croissants this week, and let’s just say they’re not going to be on my shopping list anymore, because homemade croissants trump any shop bought croissants. These were yummy in my tummy. Yes, I really said that, what can I say? I can be a kid, my mum will confirm.
These are utterly buttery and soft, with just the right amount of sweetness. That perfect flaky pastry inside and a gorgeous crispy outer shell when they’re straight out of the oven. These are perfect. Perfect.
And considering the proof is in how fast the pudding disappears, these were gone in a couple of days. Three people. Fourteen croissants. Those are some tough odds, but we persevered. That’s how good these are!
It is a Paul Hollywood recipe, so if you’re curious then check out his website. I sure will be baking my way through his recipes!
500g strong white bread flour
80g caster sugar
10g instant yeast
300ml cool water
300g chilled unsalted butter
1 medium egg
1. Put the flour in a bowl. Add the salt and sugar to one side and the yeast to the other side of the bowl. Add the water, and mix with a mixer that has dough hooks attached. First slowly for two minutes, then faster for six minutes.
2. Shape the dough into a ball, dust with flour, wrap it in some clingfilm and chill in the fridge for an hour.
3. Lightly flour your surface. Roll out the dough into a rectangle, about 60cm x 20cm, and 1cm thick. Flatten the butter to a rectangle, about 40cm x 19cm. Put the butter on the dough so the bottom two-thirds of the dough are covered.
4. Fold the exposed dough over one-third of the butter. Gently cut off the exposed butter, without going through the dough and then put it on top of the dough you folded down. Fold the bottom half of the dough up. Pinch the edges to seal the butter. Wrap the dough and chill for another hour in the fridge.
5. Put the dough on a lightly floured surface with the short end facing you and roll out into a rectangle, about 60cm x 20cm. Fold up one-third of the dough and fold the top third down on top to make a square. Wrap it up and chill for another hour.
6. Repeat step 5 twice more, making sure to chill each time.
7. Leave the dough in the fridge for eight hours, or overnight.
8. Line two or three baking trays with parchment paper
9. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough just more than 42cm x 30 cm, and about 7mm thick. Trim the edges to neaten them.
10. Cut directly halfway down the middle of the dough length ways, to make two strips. Cut triangles along the length of each strip, about 15cm tall, and 12cm wide at the base. There should be approximately 12 triangles in total.
11. Before rolling the triangles up, gently tug the thin end to cause some tension in the dough. Starting at the wide end of the triangle roll the dough up, not too tightly. You now have something that resembles a croissant. Now for the easy part!
12. Put the croissants on the baking trays, about 4-6 to a tray. Wrap each tray with a plastic bag and at room temperature, allow the croissants to rise for about two hours.
13. Heat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius
14. Whisk the egg with a pinch of salt to make an egg wash. Brush the croissants with the egg wash and bake for 15-20 minutes until a rich golden brown. Cool for a few minutes, then serve warm. Enjoy!