There are very few things as satisfying as a perfect croissant. Flaky, tender, just the right amount of pull and give, and BUTTERY. Have you ever made one? Probably not, because they’re labor intensive and require a bit of skill to “laminate” the dough. This is an industry term for layering the butter within the dough. It’s not hard, but it requires some patience and a good amount of time to do it right. I’ve had more requests on my instagram account for a video on how to make them than anything else. So, that’s what I’ve done. I learned this technique at the CIA and I’ve changed nothing (well, I cut them differently, so as not to waste a bit of dough). If you haven’t visited my Instagram stories, you’ll find tutorials (set to the music in my head) for everything from macarons to meringue (because I love using my blow torch) and I take requests for things people are having troubles with in their own kitchens.
Here is the recipe for the croissants, but the instructions are basically useless without the visuals, so come to my Instagram account (you’ll find the video on my homepage in the “highlights” archive. Just look for croissants 101.
Equipment you’ll need:
Digital Kitchen Scale
Rolling Pin – a large one will be helpful for rolling out the large piece of dough
Baking Sheet with parchment paper
Pastry Brush – use a natural bristle, not silicone
454 grams whole milk (this requires you to weigh the milk)
1 tablespoon yeast
1 tablespoon kosher salt
43 grams sugar
75 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
794 grams bread flour (you need the extra gluten strength in bread flour for this dough to stretch around all the butter without bursting open)
37 grams bread flour
454 grams unsalted butter, room temperature
To make the dough:
Combine all ingredients and mix on low speed with a dough hook in a stand mixer for about 10 minutes.
Form a smooth disk, cover with plastic wrap and rest the dough for about 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
To make the butter layer:
Combine the butter and flour with a paddle attachment in a stand mixer, until smooth.
Spread the butter into an even layer on 2/3 of a piece of parchment paper that is the same size as your baking sheet 11×16 inches.
Refrigerate the butter until set .
To make the croissant dough:
Roll the dough to the size of the baking sheet.
Place the chilled butter on the dough, aligning it with the bottom edge, so it covers 2/3 of the dough. Fold it into a letter. From here on you need to refer to my croissants 101 video on Instagram. You’ll find the dough, shaping and baking instructions there.