Sourdough Cronut - Hey hey hey, remember me?
Sending this to Yeastspotting.
Wow, it's been 11 months since I last posted. During that time several TFLers have reached out to me, thank you all for checking in. I have been doing very well, with no intention to "retire from TFL", life just got too busy to post for a while. Other than a super busy job schedule, several over sea big trips (New Zealand!), the biggest news is that I have been writing a Chinese baking book! It's scheduled to be out in July/Auguest 2014 (only in China unfortunately). Since I was doing all of the writing, photographing, not to mention recipe developing/testing/baking, I barely had any free time. Luckily the bulk of work is done, now that it's in publisher's hands, I can finally have my life back.
While I have been away from posting, I haven't stopped baking. Looking back at the pictures, I am surprised myself how much "not in the book" stuff I have baked. Had a tough time deciding which recipe I should post..
Certainly there have been lots of breads (almost all sourdough):
ww hot cross buns
Cocoa sourdough with chestnuts
Buns with seasame seeds
Flower light rye bread
Fenugreek, a new ingredient for me.
Another pretty bread with Chinese preserved dried pork & mayo filling
Lye pretzel with some ww in a pretty shape I copied from http://www.ploetzblog.de/
A sourdough with millet and tons of other whole grain
Rolls with red bean paste filling
Another pretty bread with Chinese preserved dried meat inside
Bacon filled buns
Maybe some cakes:
A super rich super decadent birthday cake for hubby, pounds of dark chocolate and butter went into that.
Of course can't live without mochi cakes
Some fresh peach cupcakes for my coworkers
Tiger skin cake rolls. Almost every Chinese bakery has this.
This pound cake has parmesan in it, sounds odd but super yummy
How about pies and cookies?
In the end, I settled on these cronuts. They were inspired by those cronuts took NYC by a storm last year, sort of how my life felt like in the past while.
I used my trusty croissant recipe posted here. The only difference is that the dough was finally rolled out to be 8mm, much thicker than the 4mm required by croissants. Cut out the hole in the middle, and let proof @ about 80F until very soft and jiggly. About 3 hours for me. Look at the layers, the height should triple or more:
Just like anything deep fried, oil must be hot enough, otherwise stuff gets too greasy. I heated grapeseed oil to about 350F, drop in dough carefully, fry until golden. (Chose grapeseed oil because I read somewhere it's what the inventor chose after many experiments, I have no idea whether that story was true, but they turned out pretty good.)
Did I mention I made these in August? Twice? It's rather inconvenient that my urge for lamination often comes in the summer.
Nice layers. They are essentially fat fried in fat, I thought they would be too greasy, but no, they are rather tasty (unfortunate for my arteries).
It's quite a lot of work to make them, but much less work than taking a flight to NYC and stand in the line for a few hours I think. I have heard that Dunkin Donuts is making them now, guess I am not the only copycat out there...
Can I say that here or do I have to literally see someone to say that? Regardless, very good to hear from you again. :)
And your baking... Wow, beautiful as always! So many... I don't know where to start.
Congratulations on completing the book. I will get one of my neighbors who frequently travel to China to bring me back a copy once it comes out. ;)
At this rate you'll be able to read my book with no problem. :P
Heh, hardly. I took a long break from Mandarin last winter to study Polish before our trip to Poland (see here) and am just getting back to it now. 但在温哥华，我们有很多中国朋友... so 我经常听中文. 我很想会说也懂中文!
Chinese is a difficult language to learn. You will get there!
It is so nice to see you on TFL again and to hear all you have been doing.
By Shiao-Ping you mean TxFarmer right? :P
Please pardon my momentary confusion of you with another virtuoso baker of whom we see too little in recent months.
Whoa! Amazing work txfarmer. Nice to see you post again after so long.
Hhhmmm gonna have to try the cronut now! But I'll do it with just sourdough for leavening, that's just how I roll...
Congrats on the book..
Thanks Michael. In the past I have had limited success making pure sourdough donuts (no yeast), seems that with frying, dough gets much shorter time to expand, and natural yeast just doesn't seem to be fast enough. But that's just an experiment of one, maybe you will have better luck. Let me know if you do try!
Coincidentally my last post here happened to be sourdough doughnuts. http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/36594/doughnuts-lievito-madre
Wild yeast can be very fast, if nurtured in the right way...
I learn something new everyday here on TFL.
So nice to see all you have been up to but more exciting is the news about your book! I am so sorry that I do not read or speak Chinese. I can only imagine that it will be a wonderful success due to your expert skills as a baker and as a 'teacher'. Your knowledge about all things baked is huge but more than that is your commitment to excellence coupled with your daring to try just about anything….You also have an uncanny way of making the most challenging baked goods look simple to make. How you have the time to do all that you do amazes me and to think that you have a full time job too!
Anyway, welcome back and thanks so much for all of the wonderful photos of what has been happening in your kitchen. Now I have more ideas on shaping and ingredients to try out :)
Thank you for the kind words both here and in previous messages. Good to be back!
Great to see you back txfarmer. And what a way to come back...SD cronuts! Just had my first recently, a knock-off at a local donut shop, was very good. Your bake pics look delicious as ever!
So cronuts already arrived on main streets huh? I really need to go buy myself one.
Congratulations on the new book. You are a hardworking talented woman, and it shows in your Products. Everything is so elegant and delicious.
Cronuts, you say!? my arteries can clog up by just watching them! But you make them look innocently delicious, as always.
Wishing you all the best, and
Welcome back , Txfarmer!
My arteries did clog just a little eating those. :D
... in this forum, Txfarmer, and it is wonderful to first, have you back, and second, find out how you have spent your time. A book is the logical outcome of your fantastic baking skills and an American publisher should pick it up ASAP! Just curious, what percentage of your recipes in the book have you developed specifically with a Chinese baker in mind?
Such a pleasure scrolling down your post and enjoying some of what you have produced in your kitchen, not to speak of your wonderful photography.
I baked with only myself in mind: a self learned home baker who has been trained as an engineer. Being a non-professional, I really cannot speak for other bakers in US or China, so the best I could do is to show what makes sense to me. There are some basic "building block" recipes like baguette, sandwich loaves, croissants, then variations based on them. Hopefully it will be an interesting read.
Welcome back Txfarmer...your posts are always so beautiful and inspirational to all of us who frequent this community.
I'm so excited for you in regards to the publication of your book. I will have to look for it when I go back to China this year. I'm usually there 4-5 times a year.
Your baked goods here are as always amazing and those Cronuts I'm sure are better than anything you can ever buy at a Dunkin Donuts or some donut shop. I think I may have to widen my door frame if I keep looking at all these deserts everyone keeps posting :).
You must share how you made that star shaped light rye as that looks more like a puff pastry creation than a bread and doesn't seem possible to make for us mere mortals :).
There are a few options on the table, but it's not finally decided yet. I will definitely post when I know the official name.
Beautiful photography to accent your lovely work!
Good to see some old friends around.
and why Lucy calls you Empress Ying, Ming the Merciless's Daughter, since your baking is not of this world and quite extraterrestrial as well as exceptional. So very well done in every way, no wonder your time is taken up with writing adn producing baking books for the oh so lucky Chinese speakers.
Glad to see you back and happy baking from what ever planet you come from :-)
I see you've been busy baking too, catching up on lots of posts from you. Thanks for the sweet words, as always!:)
You have been missed a lot!
It's good to see are back and enjoy your gorgeous bakes and fantastic photography!
I'll finish it here : )
You have been missed a lot!
It's wonderful to have you back and thank you for sharing the gorgeous photo's of your bakes..just amazing!
a lot! Thank you for sharing through the years.
Gorgeous photo's. I'd sure like to get a copy of your book..even if it's in chinese.. : )
For the repeated "welcome back"! :D
by the creativity and artistry of your baking, Txfarmer. I do hope that your book is eventually issued as an English version, too.
I need a long time to recover before thinking about another book. :P
I hope I can see them in bookshops in Hong Kong :)
Need to check with the publisher whether the book is gonna be in HK. I will let you know!
But I can promote yr book to some HK forum more easily if it is available in HK.
I worked in several bakeries in HK and I can say your breads are better than 99% bakeries in HK!
( I am making great breads even I havent mastered yr formula.)
I am one step from mastering 36hr baguette. After I am happy with my baguette, I will practice yr sandwich bread and croissant!! I will keep updating my progress in yr Chinese blog or here in TLF
Thank you very much for the efforts u put!!
for this beautiful post and for the many grand recipes that you have contributed. The pictures are entrancing and the thought of enjoying the taste even more so. I've been sorting my stack of TFL printed recipes and find your name very often on a smudged recipe with a notation like "Great recipe, or Well worth the time".
Best wishes for success with your book, will look forward to an English edition!
Txfarmer, so nice to read again your post and to admire the incredibly perfect bread and pastry. I have ben very excited with the idea of being able to buy your book, but I've learned that it is in Chinese. May you consider the possibility to publish something in English?
Thank you again for posting and sharing such a perfection.
Hi there! so good to hear from you!
We all missed your amazing posts!
Thank you for your help months ago, my sourdough problem was easily solved after your advice.
And also, I would like to sign up for an english version of your book, or even a spanish one! :)
I myself have been mostly away, but chanced on this post while doing a search for something else.
Congrats on the book! I thought you might had something like this up your sleeves :)) I've always thought if I were a publisher, I would sign you on immediately!
look forward to your book and more posts!
I never expected to find somebody I could geek out with on my two favourite things - Chinese and Bread! Do you have any of your recipes in Mandarin in a way that would be accessible from the UK?
我主要开始做面包的原因是北京的面包烂透了- 还真没想到这个网页做面包最优秀做的人之一是中国人，哈哈。 :D
Hi txfarmer , congrats on your new book , I'm pretty sure it would be awesome ! I hope it will be a bilingual version *crossed-fingers* :D
Hi TX Farmer!
Beautiful croissant, unreal.
I'm doing four hundred spent grain cinnamon rolls for a competition, I want to use your formula. What do y'all think the yeast percentage would be?