The Perfect Croissant

I'm not saying that I perfected the croissant, I'm just saying that I followed a perfect croissant recipe as perfectly as I could. You may be thinking to yourself "Hey Kiera... you were talking about making Croissants like FOR-EV-ER ago.  What happened?"  Yeah, I know.  I thought if I talked about it, blogged about it, and penciled it in my calendar, that it would HAVE to happen.  But, I kind of dodged it.  Partially out of The Fear, and partially out of lack of weekends to devote entirely to a Croissant.

But alas, the time was finally right.  Mother's Day Weekend.  I had read the 5 page recipe (8, if you include the photos) from the Tartine cookbook several times and I was so ready to devote 15+ hours of my weekend to a pastry.  Seriously.  I was really looking forward to it.

I started Saturday night around 8:30 PM with the preferment.  I watched Rocky Balboa while the preferment mix rose for 2-3 hours.  I highly recommend you do the same.  It really helps the dough rise.  The soundtrack is very encouraging to the milk, yeast and flour.   It puffs up like Sylvester Stalone in Rambo I.  Not Rambo II, but Rambo I.

croissant preferment

I knew if I wanted to serve croissants before Midnight on Sunday that I couldn't stop there.  So, I forged ahead with the dough, combining the yeast and preferment, adding milk, then flour, sugar, salt, melted butter, and more milk.  Always watching, judging.  Look at the dough, look at the dough.  Then, I let the dough rest for 15-20, while this girl cleaned some dishes.  Typical.


...Mix dough some more.   Freak out that maybe I overmixed it?  Did I ruin it?  Do I start over?  I mean, yeah, I'll be loosing a few hours, but I could loose even more if I continue on with this failed dough!!

croissant dough

...Then Cole Googles some pictures of croissant dough in the early stages...Turns out my "hot mess dough" looks like it's normal on the interweb.  Ok, crisis averted.  Phew.

Let dough rest 1.5 hours, while Kiera and Cole clean up after the mess.  Then, decide to rent a movie on iTunes: It's Complicated.   Just like this recipe.  Perfect.


Press dough into a rectacle.

Wrap that baby up, stick it in the fridge.  Let it rest 4-6 hours.  This time, I get to rest too.  Go to bed around 1 AM?  I can't really remember.  Late o'clock.

Woke up at 5:30 AM?  Can't really remember that either.   Early o'clock.

Shuffle to the kitchen in my robe and slippers, prepare the butter (European Butter.  The good stuff.) and start laminating that dough.

Roll out, spread on the butta, fold into a plaque, and seal.  Quarter Turn!

Feel unbelievably satisfied at how much my "envelope" is lookin' like the pretty black and white pictures in the Tartine cookbook.

Roll, fold, seal.

Wrap!  Fridge 1.5-2 hours.

Tidy up a little.  Shuffle back to bed.  Try to go back to sleep.  Yeah, that's not happening.  Read some Twilight. Coleeee, wake up.  I'm hungry.  I'm bored.  Continue watching It's Complicated.  Get really siked when the Croissant scene comes on.  OMG.   Fate.

Unwrap, roll out, final fold.  Wrap!   Freezer 1 hour.   Good!  I got all that done before company starts coming over.  That was the goal.

Ok, take dough out.  Roll, roll, roll.

Do the fun pastry wheel triangle thingy.  (Cole's Mom, Vicki, cuts like a pro.)

Add chocolate to a few.

Form croissants.

What is this a croissaint for ants?! They need to be at least... 2 times this size!  Put in oven with some steamy water on bottom (but not too hot!) for 2.5 hours for the final rising.

Remove.  Pre-heat oven to 425 F for .5 hours, egg wash croissants 10 min before popping in, turn oven down to 400 for baking.  Set timer 10-15 minutes.  Peek tiny tiny bit into the oven at 15 min then pace around the oven for the last 5 minutes.  Have a Peach Bellini.



Let cool.  Serve up with butta, jelly, and pride.

Bon Appetit!

Gain 5 lbs. instantly.

Check that one off your Baking Bucket List.

Oh, and what to do with leftover dough? Well, Petit Croissants, of course!