The Fresh Loaf

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Nothing Un-Yummy: Croissants, Morning Buns and Fruit-Nut Bread

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GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Nothing Un-Yummy: Croissants, Morning Buns and Fruit-Nut Bread

In celebration of the first three-day weekend of the new year, I made a batch of laminated dough, using Txfarmer’s deservedly celebrated poolish croissant formula and procedures (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/22677/poolish-croissant-pursuit-perfection).  As with my first attempt at this challenging but rewarding treat (http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/24692/pâtisserie-lamentation), I split the batch in two and made some croissants and some morning buns.

Again I found Txfarmer’s detailed notes to be very useful, especially the notes about being patient with the dough and letting it rest when it doesn’t want to be stretched to the required dimensions, and letting the shaped pastries proof fully (over 3.5 hours for me).

Coupla notes about my procedures: I used Plugra butter, but about 30 grams less fold-in butter than Txfarmer specifies.  I trimmed the dough sheets liberally before each fold to get nice square, layered edges (more on the trimmings below).  I let the dough rest overnight in the fridge after the final fold.  I haven’t been baking for that long, and each experience with a rolling pin is an education.  I’m getting better at keeping the dough sheets regular in shape and even in thickness.

The results were very satisfactory—not significantly better than my first try, but at least as good (repeatability is an encouraging thing).  Thanks, again, Txfarmer!

The morning buns pretty much followed the Tartine formula (linked in my earlier blog post), except I left out the orange zest and used a bit more butter in the muffin cups, so the bottoms of the buns are more caramelly. 

Since I had about 40 or 50 grams of dough scraps, I decided to try something different.  I mooshed the scraps into a ball, rolled it out to about 3/16” thick, covered the sheet with grated Jarslberg cheese, rolled it up like a jelly roll, sliced 1” rounds, proofed for about 90 minutes, and baked them at 350 for about 40 minutes.  These are delectable little cheese wheels, crispy and flaky outside and tender inside…very cheesy.  Next time, I’ll add a touch of cayenne.

In the midst of the patisserie adventure, I had to fulfill a spousal demand for my usual variation on Reinhart’s Cinnamon-Raisin-Walnut Bread.  Mine includes a mix of walnuts and pecans and a mix of golden raisins and dried cranberries.  This time I tried one little new twist—I soaked the raisins and cranberries in a rum soaker (1/4 cup dark rum, 1 ¼ cup hot water and 1 tbsp of sugar).

There’re almost too many treats in the house now.  So I haven’t cut into the Cinnamon-Rum Raisin-Cranberry-Walnut-Pecan Bread yet.  I’ll post a crumb shot later.

Added Note:  Here's the crumb shot.  There is a mild and enjoyable rum flavor in the raisins, an improvement on a really good bread.  Kinda like Whisky for Breakfast.

 

Glenn

Comments

Franchiello's picture
Franchiello

Your croissants and buns look so tempting, but after my last visit with my Primary Care doc I don't dare try to replicte your stunning and mouthwatering success!!  :(

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

I admit these are not for every day.  The last time I baked croissants was 5 months ago (to the day).  We freeze the pastries and have them every week or two.  We believe in moderation in all things....even excess.

Glenn

Syd's picture
Syd

Beautiful baking Glenn.  The crumb on the croissant looks very professional. 

I guess these are all good for the diet, then?

Fondest,

Syd

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

How did you know?  I found a professional crumb on the internets and used that.

Many thanks for the nice compliment, Syd.

As my dear uncle used to say, "Dieting is easy.  I've lost thousands of pounds."

Glenn

SylviaH's picture
SylviaH

Oh my, a delicious assortment of special pastries and sweet breads. I know you want the practice and it's really not all about eating, and what a beautiful job you did of the whole lot.  I also understand why your wife had a demand for the CRRCWPB...good choice, over the buttery pastries and that leaves more for you ; )

Sylvia

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Absolutely right, Sylvia.  It's about practicing and improving my technique.  Just don't ask why I'm less dedicated to improving my green salad technique than my pastry technique.  I appreciate the kind words.

As to Cat preferring the CRRCWPB, I'm not sure.  She sure does love those morning buns.

Glenn

Mebake's picture
Mebake

Those croissants looks fabulous, Glenn! Very pro. indeed, nice work! I made croissants last month and frozen them for later baking. They  thawed and proofed for (6-7 hours) , i couldn't catch them at the right time when i got back home, and ended up with overproofed flattish croissants.

Lovely assorted bakes, Glenn. Whats next? A Horst pumpernickle to counter all the sugar/fat?  :)

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

I'm glad the croissants look professional.  Even more, I'm glad they taste like the real thing.

Rather than a pumpernickel, I think I'll go back to one of Hamelman's many wonderful whole grain breads.  I generally like wheat breads better than ryes...unless there's corned beef or pastrami involved.

Glenn

varda's picture
varda

Hey Glenn,  I have been working on croissants lately as well.    You got terrific results!    -Varda

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

I look forward to reading about (and seeing pictures of) your croissants.

Glenn

txfarmer's picture
txfarmer

Very nice! Since that first croissant post, I have posted quite a few more posts on laminated dough. You might want to try using bread flour instead of AP flour (it's AP I used for those poolish croissants, but I now think bread flour would yield better crumb, but a more difficult rolling experience). Also, it's not advised to reduce roll-in butter, not until you are very efficient and confident with the process. Less roll-in butter -> thinner butter layers -> easier to melt and create a less than ideal crumb.

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Thanks for the comment.

I have followed your further laminations. And perhaps I will try bread flour, or a mix of AP and bread flour.  I can use the exercise...and the experience.

As for the roll-in butter quantity, while I bow to your masterfulness, I find that the quantity of butter I use results in no butter leakage and a very nice crumb.  Believe me, there's plenty enough butter in there.

Glenn

EvaB's picture
EvaB

just a tiny note I have a rum raisin cookie recipe, in which you put 1/4 cup of rum in a small pot with a tight lid, bring it to the boil, stir in the raisins and put the lid on top, let it sit to cold, and all the rum is in the raisins, and boy those cookies go fast!
Its fast, simple and no added water or sugar needed. This is for one cup of raisins but its simple to up the amount of rum by considering baker's percent and taking either the rum or raisin amount as the 100%, I am not good at math, and can't figure it out myself, I'd just add an eighth of a cup for every half cup more of raisins or dried fruit chunks I added.

GSnyde's picture
GSnyde

Thanks for the comment, Eva.  I've re-hydrated dried fruit with pure rum and found that the rum flavor overwhelms the fruit.  So I prefer to water it down and sweeten it up...and then wash the goodies down with straight rum.

Glenn