March 22, 2019
Rosie Daykin’s Homemade Croissants
Try this Homemade Croissants recipe from Rosie Daykin’s new cookbook Let Me Feed You.
Oh yes you can! I don’t doubt for a minute that a lot of you will glance at this recipe and immediately think, “No way!” But, people, trust me. The only thing really challenging about making croissants is setting aside the time to do so. And even that isn’t really a biggie when you consider the reward for your efforts: a pile of croissants, of course! So stick with me and I’ll walk you through it.
Yield: Makes 11 croissants
- In a medium bowl, use a fork to combine the yeast, water and flour. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Butter a large mixing bowl and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, and with the mixer running on low, combine the ingredients for the dough (flour, sugar, salt, eggs, water and butter) with the sponge. Increase speed to medium-high and continue to mix until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and forms a nearly smooth ball, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Transfer to the prepared bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest in a warm, draft-free spot until it has doubled in size, about 1 hour.
- Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and, using a rolling pin, shape it into a 10 x 12-inch rectangle. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap, transfer it at to a cookie sheet, and place in the freezer to rest for 20 to 30 minutes.
Make Butter Block
- Place the chilled butter between two sheets of parchment paper. Use your rolling pin to lightly pound the butter to make it pliable, then roll it into a 7 x 8-inch piece. Wrap the piece of butter in the parchment and set aside.
- Remove the dough from the freezer. On a lightly floured work surface, roll the dough into a 10 × 18-inch rectangle.
- Check the consistency of your rolled butter; it should be soft enough that you can leave an imprint when you gently push with your finger, but not so soft that you can push right through it. If it’s too cold, it may break and tear the dough when rolling; if it’s too soft, it will begin to ooze from the dough as it’s being rolled. Neither of these situations will create the flaky croissant you’re hoping for, so take your time to ensure that it’s right.
- Place the sheet of rolled butter on the lower half of the sheet of rolled dough. Fold the top half of the dough over the butter so that the butter is sandwiched between two layers of dough. Pinch all of the edges to seal it inside (this is known as the single-fold method).
- Rotate the dough 90 degrees and, using a rolling pin, roll it out to a 10 × 24-inch rectangle.
- Fold the top third of the dough down to the center, then fold the bottom third of the dough up and over top of that, as you would fold a letter. This is considered your first turn. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and allow it to rest in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour. Resting the dough is very important as it gives the gluten that has developed a chance to relax and allows the yeast to develop and enhance its flavor.
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator and repeat the whole process. Just as you did for your first turn, use your rolling pin to roll the dough out into a 10 × 24-inch rectangle and once again fold the piece in three folds, as you would a letter. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for another hour. This is considered your second turn.
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator and repeat the process one last time, thus creating your third and final turn. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap for the last time and let rest in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour or overnight.
- Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator, unwrap, and place on a lightly floured work surface. Roll it out into a 9 × 24-inch rectangle. Use a pizza cutter or a sharp knife to cut the dough into 11 triangles (about 9 inches long × 4 inches wide at the base). Use your hands to gently stretch each piece of dough to slightly elongate them.
- Place one of the triangles of dough on your work surface and use your hands to gently stretch the widest end of the triangle a little, then begin to roll it up from the base to the tip. Place it on the prepared cookie sheet, seam side down. Repeat with each piece of dough. Divide the rolled croissants between the two cookie sheets so as not to over-crowd them.
Make Egg Wash
- In a small bowl, use a small whisk or fork to combine the egg and water. Use a pastry brush to gently coat each croissant all over with the wash. Place the remaining egg wash in the refrigerator until you need it again.
- Leave the croissants to rise in a warm (but not too warm; we don’t want to melt any of those lovely butter layers), draft-free spot until doubled in size, 1 to 11⁄2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Use a pastry brush to gently coat each croissant all over again with the egg wash.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the croissants are a lovely deep brown. Enjoy hot from the oven with lots of butter and jam. See, wasn’t it worth it?
- Store the baked croissants, well wrapped, in the freezer for up to 1 month. Reheat them in a 300°F oven for about 10 minutes before serving.