The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

We used to call them "croissants" or "horseshoe rolls"

42jules's picture

We used to call them "croissants" or "horseshoe rolls"

  I started baking bread after many years in January during the floods and have since got to the stage where we don't buy bread anymore.  Not a hard task as the supermarket bread is unspeakable.  Hubby is enjoying really fresh bread for sandwiches etc.

What I would really like to make is what we used to call croissants.  These days, croissants are a different thing altogether, made with butter and soft.

The rolls I remember were crusty on the outside, and tasy and delicious on the inside.

I suspect that finding the right flour is the first step.

Has anyone any suggestions regarding Australian flours?

Many thanks





RobynNZ's picture

G'day 42jules,

I took a look on Google to see how Wamuran fared in January - you certainly got a lot of water. Trust things are better in your community now.

I was wondering whether the croissant rolls you'd like to make are crescent shaped bread rolls (because I remember horseshoe rolls here that were bread rolls) or the french pastries called croissant. The latter are made by laminating butter and dough. Sue in Melbourne has been working on a croissant project. Take a look at her blog:

If indeed you are looking to make bread rolls, you could try the search box top left of the page here and type in 'crusty bread rolls' and take a read and checkout photos to see if you can find rolls similar to the one you have in mind, there is plenty to check out! Generally for  a bread roll with a crisp crust & soft interior a plain flour is used rather than a bread flour. However, I think you will find technique, right through from mixing to baking, will be your friend.  Anyway take a search here and see if you kind find something along the lines of what you have in mind.

For the shape, after bulk fermentation, roll the dough out and cut it into triangles with two long sides and one short side and roll up, starting from the short side, finally draw the outer points in a little. Then do final proof.

btw The Bourke Street Bakery book (from Sydney) that Sue refers to is very good - you may be able to access it through your local library. There is a section on flour, they use flour especially ground for them. But I have had great success using formula from the book with the flour retailed at supermarkets here.

For Queensland inspiration I recommend Shiao-Ping's blog:

Welcome to TFL, Robyn

42jules's picture

Dear Robyn,

We certainly had some rain in January.  Our catchment peaked a day or so before Brisbane, and reached record levels.  Sadly, who do aerial photomaps declined to do our area, so there are only records of the Brisbane floods.  Husband has spent the last months repairing damage to fences and roads on the property.

Back to the bread rolls.  I think horseshoe rolls would be the correct terminolgy, but they were definitely a crisp and crunchy outside with a soft interior, and a flavour entirely different to the normal bread rolls available today.  Having seen how long it takes to make them, I can understand the extra costs involved.  I dont know of anyone in Brisbane or round here who makes them.

Thank you so much for the references.  I suspect the particular flours may have a lot to do with the flavour ( I see a Sunshine coast supply house has started importing French flour and that is possibly a way to go).

Technique is probably, as you say, a major part of it.  All the rolls I have made so far still taste like the bread, nothing like the delicious tastes I remember.  I tried using a preferment last night, but the result was about the same.

Many thanks,


42jules's picture

Hi Robyn,

In disgust after baking a couple of rolls from this batch, I rolled the rest up into a loaf, sprayed a little more water and kneaded into a loaf.  The loaf was left on the bench till mid afternoon, when I fired up my little gas oven and old kiln shelf and baked it at a high temperature.

Still nothing like the results I want, but the taste had improved dramatically.  I suspect too I need to increase the percentage of water and see what happens next time.

Having read some comments about the "pooboy" bread baked in New Orleans, which sounds exactly like the recipe for my dreamed of horseshoe rolls, I will see what I can find, and perhaps get a couple of kilos of the advertised imported French flour to explore the recipes. 



PS this is rather like the time I did several courses of Asian and Chinese cooking at a local high school.  All the experiments are much appreciated by the home folks!

RobynNZ's picture

Hi Jules

Yes, this is a good hobby,  challenging with all the variables to help maintain our interest and everyone gets to enjoy the spoils. 

Sounds like the extra time on the bench contributed to the flavour profile. Another thing you could try is mixing the dough and then retarding it overnight in the fridge.

Type po boy into the search box here on TFL to see how others have got on. 

I'm sure you won't be satisfied until you have had a chance to play with the French flour, but I encourage you to experiment with a range of Australian flours too. The bulk of the flour sold in NZ is milled here from Australian wheat, I always think how fortunate we are to have such good quality reliable product available.

You might also read up about malt. There's a chance that is the source of the 'extra' flavour you remember.

Cheers, Robyn