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is 99.9% milk fat butter suitable for laminating dough?

Beardedcook's picture
Beardedcook

is 99.9% milk fat butter suitable for laminating dough?

Hi everyone,

This is my first post in this forum, but I have been lurking here and learned a lot from the forum threads here. I am not a native English speaker so please bear with my English.

I am looking looking for a good butter for making laminated dough such as puff pastry, croissant dough and danish dough.

A couple of days ago I found supplier for Corman butter in my area, and they offer a 99.9% milk fat concentrated butter.

Would this butter suitable for making laminated dough? my understanding is that water content in butter is the one responsible for puffing up laminated dough by converting into steam during baking and the fat is making sure the layers doesn't stick together and  "fry" it to make it crispy. Please correct me if I am wrong.

So how come this product is marketed as ideal for laminated dough application? 99.9% milk fat content means the water content in this butter is almost non existent, right?

Has anybody in this forum ever use this butter? please share your experience with them.

Thank you.

Here I attach the product data sheet from Corman's website.

 

MichaelLily's picture
MichaelLily

I think you are correct.  I would think that this Corman would function similarly to lard (albeit with better flavor).  It is easier to roll out when cold, therefore easier to laminate dough.

Beardedcook's picture
Beardedcook

Hi MichaelLily,

Thank you for your reply. Yes with higher fat content and lower moisture it would be less likely to melt during lamination and I'm sure it'll taste incredible. But will it puff up as good as butter with 85% milk fat content? what do you think?

I can't risk buying it just for the sake of testing because they sell it only in 5x2Kg box and quite expensive.

Thanks.

MichaelLily's picture
MichaelLily

Buy some lard and try that. I have my thoughts of how it will go, but then again lard makes for flaky pie crusts, there is moisture in croissant dough,  and croissants are yeasted and will rise anyway.

Beardedcook's picture
Beardedcook

Well, I'll have to render my own lard. Lard is not sold anywhere in my country because we have no history of using lard in our traditional cuisine due to majority of Muslim population.

Thanks for your suggestion.

gerhard's picture
gerhard

comes from the moisture turning to vapour and pushing the layers apart.  I have no scientific proof but it seems to make sense to me.

Gerhard

Lechem's picture
Lechem (not verified)

And the steam comes from the moisture in the dough?

gerhard's picture
gerhard

the expansion in the oven comes from the vapour filling the pours of the baked good prior to the crust forming, so will there be enough steam from the dough to also give the flaky texture?  It is beyond my pay grade to say definitively but I do know when substituting ingredients results are often different from expectations.

Gerhard

Beardedcook's picture
Beardedcook

So does that mean this 99.9% milk fat butter won't be able to make laminated dough as puffy as 85% milk fat butter? If that is true then I'm going to get their normal butter.

 

ds99303's picture
ds99303

Another concern is butter with too much butterfat might make the end product too heavy and greasy.

Beardedcook's picture
Beardedcook

I see, that make sense. I too won't eat a croissant that is dripping wet with fat regardless of how it taste.

Have you any experience working with this butter before?

dabrownman's picture
dabrownman

moisture in the butter.  The regular dough part is like any other bread that is allowed to proof.  It would double in size and spring in the oven like normal bread.  The layers of butter with 15% - 20% water content and the eater in the dough  vaporizes making the dough not only spring but puff up too since the fat traps it and won't let it escape easily.  The fat, oil in the butter and water vapor won't mix which traps the expanding gas from the water vapor making it puff.  If you use butter with no water it will just be heavier and more greasy since there isn't any additional water in the butter to get trapped I'm guessing.  What we are told in baking is not necessarily the scientific fact as we all have learned though.

But give it a go and let us know what happens

here is a link http://www.thekitchn.com/kitchen-mysteries-what-makes-p-108154 

Beardedcook's picture
Beardedcook

I finally relented and called my purveyor to send me a carton of this butter and spent my afternoon laminating puff pastry.

The butter is very pliable almost like play-doh after I pound it, it doesn't melt easily and can withstand 2 turns without needing to rest it in the fridge. I might be able to finish it in one go, but I worry about the gluten seizing up or risking tearing layers. I finished my puff pastry with 4 double turns with final layer count of 256 layers.

I got impatient and bake the trimmings to test how high this butter can puff with almost no water content.

Result

It puff up a bit better than using my usual butter, not sure because it's just a small piece. I'll update more when using the finished product.

Taste wise, it have great butter flavor but a bit lacking in that cream flavor of traditional dairy butter. I guess because this butter is pretty much a clarified butter block, it lack that milk solid flavor. It doesn't have that sticky mouth feel I worried about because Corman listed their 99.9% mf butter melting point at 36°C instead of the usual 32°-34°C.

I have croissant dough slow fermenting in my fridge now, tomorrow I'll laminate it and bake them the day after. Can't wait!

gary.turner's picture
gary.turner

Your test piece seems to be less than optimally puffed. See txfarmer's croisants.

I am convinced the water content of the butter is the source of puffed perfection. Low water content butter is preferred over high water content (too much of a good thing? ;-) ), but no water appears to be contra-indicated except for some laminated pastries (that look similar to your test piece's photo) that use lard or vegetable shortening.

But, what do I know? None of my croissants approach perfection.

gary

Beardedcook's picture
Beardedcook

Hi Gary,

Thanks a lot for that link, that is a very detailed step by step croissant baking recipe! I can't wait to try it out!

Can my puff pastry rise higher? I always though that puff pastry rise about 8x its original size, and the one I baked seems to be close to that.

Do you think there's a mistake in my laminaging technique? Because my result using this 99.9% butter is actually a bit more puffy than my usual recipe using traditional butter.

Here's my laminating technique.

  1. I mix the dough to just mixed, so no gluten development. Let it relax in fridge about 1hr.
  2. Pound butter and shape it into square about 1/2cm thick, let it cool down a bit in the fridge about 15 minutes.
  3. I rolled the dough wide enough to envelope the butter. Then lock in butter inside the dough using 1/2 turn (so i got dough-butter-dough layer).
  4. I roll it perpendicular to the seam to 6mm thickness and do double turn(book fold) to get my first 4 butter layer.
  5. Rolling it with the long side pararel to my body to take the thickness down a bit, then I turn 90° and roll it out to 6mm thickness, do another double turns. Then let it rest in fridge for 30 minutes.
  6. Then I finish it with another 2 double turns like I explained above.
  7. Before baking I roll it down to 2.5 - 3mm, bake it at 190°C for 15-18 minutes or until its browned.
Beardedcook's picture
Beardedcook

So I baked the puff pastry today to make my version of Corica Pastries Strudel.

Puff Pastry

They rise beautifully, a bit too high in my opinion. So water content in butter doesn't affect the puffiness of laminated dough significantly, the water in the dough do most of the heavy lifting.

But this 99.9% milk fat butter does make the final product a bit more greasy just like what ds99303 said above. I guess I'll go back to 82% milk fat butter once I finish this carton....1Kg down...9Kgs to go!!

sherdbachchi's picture
sherdbachchi

I wish my puffs rose like that !!! I wouldn't mind the grease at all!

I'm curious to know your croissants results with this type of butter.

And if you don't mind my asking, where are you located ? I'm in the Middle East and am having a hard time getting the results I used to get in France, even with European 82% butters. It may also be a flour problem, not just butter, but I've been mulling about the idea of using ghee, or a mix of ghee and butter (making a Beurre manié with ghee, butter and flour).

On another note, if you want to experiment with lard in a Muslim country, with no access to lard, beef suet is pretty good. Where I am, they do sell it at the butcher shop (beef or lamb), but I just make my own tallow /suet from after collecting all the fat trimmings from the pieces of meat we buy or from making broth. I do the same with chicken skin to get schmaltz. But work beautifully in short crust pastries and hot water crust pastries (tender, filling pastries with lots of flavor and just the right amount of flakiness and crumble).

sherdbachchi's picture
sherdbachchi

TBH, even when I was in France, the best result I ever got for laminated doughs was using super fresh cultured raw butter from a dairy farmer not far from where I was in Normandy. No idea what the fat content was but it was a magnificent butter!