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Who would have thought foie gras would end up in your drink? Add duck fat-washed gin, pear brandy, salted duck fat, and compressed pear brûlée to make an aromatic cocktail. With notes of citrus, elderflower, juniper, and honey, the florals round out the distinct flavor of savory duck. Served on the rocks, it's a cocktail you won't forget. Made by mixologist Jeremy Lake of Playa Restaurant.
- 3/4 Ounces Lemon juice
- 1/4 Ounce Honey syrup
- 1/2 Ounce St. Germain
- 1/4 Ounce Clear Creek Pear brandy
- 2 Ounces Duck fat-washed No. 3 gin
- 1 Ounce Brut rosé champagne
- Grapefruit zest
- Cinnamon and pear air
- Salted duck fat and compressed pear brûlée, for garnish
- 2/3 cup sliced blanched almonds (71 grams)
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar (117 grams)
- 2 large egg whites, room temperature
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar (53 grams)
- Jam or other filling
Preheat oven to 350 degrees with rack in lower third. Place almonds in a food processor process until as fine as possible, about 1 minute. Add confectioners' sugar process until combined, about 1 minute.
Pass almond mixture through a fine-mesh sieve. Transfer solids in sieve to food processor grind and sift again, pressing down on clumps. Repeat until less than 2 tablespoons of solids remains in sieve.
Whisk egg whites and granulated sugar by hand to combine. Beat on medium speed (4 on a KitchenAid) 2 minutes. Increase speed to medium-high (6) and beat 2 minutes. Then beat on high (8) 2 minutes more.
The beaten egg whites will hold stiff, glossy peaks when you lift the whisk out of the bowl. Add flavoring and food coloring, if desired, and beat on highest speed 30 seconds.
Add dry ingredients all at once. Fold with a spatula from bottom of bowl upward, then press flat side of spatula firmly through middle of mixture. Repeat just until batter flows like lava, 35 to 40 complete strokes.
Rest a pastry bag fitted with a 3/8-inch round tip (Ateco #804) inside a glass. Transfer batter to bag secure top. Dab some batter remaining in bowl onto corners of 2 heavy baking sheets line with parchment.
With piping tip 1/2 inch above sheet, pipe batter into a 3/4-inch round, then swirl tip off to one side. Repeat, spacing rounds 1 inch apart. Tap sheets firmly against counter 2 or 3 times to release air bubbles.
Bake 1 sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until risen and just set, 13 minutes. Let cool. Pipe or spread filling on flat sides of half of cookies top with remaining half. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate.
What Is the Definition of a Standard Recipe?
A standard recipe has been tested, proven and researched before being published. It includes the appropriate quantities and brand qualities required for the particular dish that the user wishes to make. These recipes also procure a particular consistency and method that is used as a main base for similar dishes.
Standard recipes are often used as a base only for new dishes and creative alternatives for the recipe itself. These alternate versions may include vegan or gluten-free options, or they may use different flavors and products to create original recipes. Using a standard recipe helps maintain cost control for the ingredients.
A standardized recipe may be different from one food service to another because of variation in equipment, available ingredients, and skills of the cook or food handler. However, the USDA requires the following information to be included in a standardized recipe as a minimum: the name of the recipe, list of ingredients and their measurements, preparation of ingredients and cooking procedures, serving instructions, yield, portion sizes, variations or garnishes, nutrition information per serving, marketing guide, and necessary equipment. For companies that follow the HACCP system, standardized recipes also include Critical Control Points or food safety instructions.
By following a standardized recipe, the food establishment can assure customers that they are being served quality food of the correct portion or serving size. The food establishment can also control food costing and inventories of ingredients more easily and save employee time when using standardized recipes.
The 5 French Mother Sauces Everyone Should Know
The five French mother sauces𠅋ຜhamel, Hollandaise, velouté, Espagnole, and sauce tomat𠅊re the building blocks of all other French sauces.
Chef Marie Antoine-Carême named Bຜhamel, velouté, Espagnole, and sauce tomat the 𠇏our French mother sauces” in the 19th century, and Chef Auguste Escoffier added Hollandaise to the mix in Le Guide Culinaire in 1903.
It’s important to note that four of the five sauces (Hollandaise is the outlier) start with a roux. A roux is typically made from equal parts flour and fat cooked together and is used to thicken sauces.
So why should non-culinary students care about any of this? Well, once you’ve mastered the five basic recipes, you’ll be able to tackle more complex sauces down the road. There would be no bœuf bourguignonne without Espagnole, no au gratin potatoes without Bຜhamel.
Think of it this way: Remember when you missed one math class in high school and were lost for the rest of the year? That’s how you should approach French sauces. When you’ve learned the basics, jumping into the deep end later doesn’t seem quite as daunting.
- 1 1/4 cups plus 1 teaspoon confectionersâ€™ sugar
- 1 cup (4 ounces) finely ground sliced, blanched almonds
- 6 tablespoons fresh egg whites (from about 3 extra-large eggs)
- Pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- Macaron Filling
To make the macarons: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl, whisk together confectioners' sugar and ground almonds. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip egg whites with salt on medium speed until foamy. Increase speed to high and gradually add granulated sugar. Continue to whip until stiff glossy peaks form. With a rubber spatula, gently fold in the confectioners' sugar mixture until completely incorporated.
Line baking sheets with parchment paper set aside. Fit a pastry bag with a 3/8-inch #4 round tip, and fill with batter. Pipe 1-inch disks onto prepared baking sheets, leaving 2 inches between cookies. The batter will spread a little. Let stand at room temperature until dry, and a soft skin forms on the tops of the macarons and the shiny surface turns dull, about 15 minutes.
Bake, with the door of the oven slightly ajar, until the surface of the macarons is completely dry, about 15 minutes. Remove baking sheet to a wire rack and let the macarons cool completely on the baking sheet. Gently peel off the parchment. Their tops are easily crushed, so take care when removing the macarons from the parchment. Use immediately or store in an airtight container, refrigerated for up to 2 days or frozen for up to 1 month.
To fill the macarons: Fill a pastry bag with the filling. Turn macarons so their flat bottoms face up. On half of them, pipe about 1 teaspoon filling. Sandwich these with the remaining macarons, flat-side down, pressing slightly to spread the filling to the edges. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
Variations: To make coffee-flavored macarons: In step 1, add 2 drops brown food coloring to the egg whites after they are whipped. In step 4, blend 1/2 cup macaron filling with 1 1/2 teaspoons espresso powder dissolved in 1/2 teaspoon warm water for the filling. To make cassis-flavored macarons: In step 1, add 2 drops purple food coloring to the egg whites after they are whipped. In step 4, use 1/3 cup good-quality cassis jam for the filling. To make pistachio-flavored macarons: In step 1, add 2 drops green food coloring to the egg whites after they are whipped. In step 4, combine 1/2 cup macaron filling with 1 tablespoon pistachio paste for the filling.
What is a Recipe – What is Mise en Place
A recipe is a set of instruction used for preparing and producing a certain food, dish, or drink. The purpose of a recipe is to have a precise record of the ingredients used, the amounts needed, and the way they are combined.
(1) The Recipe Name tells you what you will be making. Sometimes the author will include personal information on the recipe.
(2) There are three components to a recipe. The first is the List of Ingredients , and the second is the Amount of the Ingredients .
(3) The third is the Preparation Instructions . A well-written recipe will list all ingredients in the order they will be added in the Preparation Instructions. Most well-written recipes will spell out pan size, cooking temperature, and how much of each ingredient to use. However, you will find some poorly written recipes that use abbreviations.
(4) Some recipe will include Variations for the recipe and also how to Store your prepared dish.
Check out a sample of a well-written recipe below:
(1) Recipe Name:
A British teatime favorite. This sweet, yet tart, velvety spread is heavenly on freshly baked scones, muffins, and tea breads. Another favorite is serving lemon curd on gingerbread or used as a filling for tarts and cakes. Lemon curd is so easy-to-make as all it contains is eggs, sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest, and butter.
(2) List of Ingredients and amount used:
3 to 4 tablespoons lemon zest (rind)*
1/2 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice (4 to 6 lemons)**
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
6 tablespoons salted butter, cut into pieces
3 eggs, lightly beaten
* Cold lemons are much easier to grate. Always grate your lemons first, and then juice them.
** Do not use the bottled lemon juice – only use fresh-squeezed lemon juice. Room temperature lemons produce more juice. When choosing lemons, look for ones that are firm, plump, and heavy for their size. Always use fresh lemons when making lemon curd.
(3) Preparation Instructions:
Remove the zest (rind) from the lemons using a zester or a peeler (be careful to avoid getting any of the white pith). Juice the lemons after removing the zest.
In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine lemon zest, lemon juice, and sugar. Bring just to a boil reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 5 minutes. Add butter and stir until it has melted. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. NOTE: Use a heavy-based, non-reactive saucepan (stainless steel, anodized aluminum, and enamel all work well). Aluminum or unlined copper pans will react with the acid in the lemons, discoloring the curd and giving it a metallic flavor.
Beat eggs into cooled lemon mixture until well blended. Return to heat and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, 10 to 15 minutes or until mixture thickens and coats spoon. NOTE: Do not let the lemon curd boil, as it can cause the mixture to curdle. Remove from heat. The lemon curd will continue to thicken as it cools.
(4) Variation and Storing the Dish:
Variation: For a Lime Curd, substitute lime zest and lime juice for the lemon zest and juice.
Storing Lemon Curd: Cover by laying a layer of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd (this prevents a skin from forming on the surface). Store in refrigerator for up to 4 weeks or store in the freezer for one year.
Read your recipe carefully before starting: Be sure you have all the ingredients called for and that you understand the recipe clearly. This is the reason most recipe fail. If the recipe says “room temperature,” there is usually a reason.
When preparing a recipe for the first time, it is recommended that you follow the recipe exactly so you have an initial template of how the writer intended it to look and taste. Then you can experiment from there.
Why a recipe does not work.
Yes, there are some recipes that do not work. This is usually because of a misprint, an editing error, and the recipe not being tested properly before printing. No matter how detailed the recipe is written, the recipe can not tell you everything you need to know. Some judgment of your part is actually needed on certain variables, such as:
Kitchens are not stocked with the same equipment. Pots and pans can vary according to the material used to make them. Check out Choosing Cookware and Baking Dish and Pan Sizes.
Ranges and oven have temperature differences.
Ingredients were not measured carefully. This is especially important when baking. Check out Cooking Equivalent Measurements and Basic Rules for Baking.
Cooking times that have been given in the recipe are meant to be used as a guideline only. If a cooking temperature is given as a means of determining doneness, this is usually accurate. Check out Internal Cooking Temperature Chart.
You substituted ingredients improperly. Replacing ingredients may result vastly different taste. Could taste better or worse. Check out Ingredient Substitution Chart. The cook probably substituted an ingredient because they either:
Do not have or could not find one of the ingredients.
Wish to alter a recipe to lower the fat or calories.
Don’t have a particular piece of equipment to cook the recipe as instructed. Some ingredients and cooking steps can be substituted or eliminated and some just cannot.
Unless otherwise noted in the recipe, assume that:
eggs are large (about 2 ounces each)
flour is unbleached all-purpose flour
sugar is white granulated
fresh herbs, greens, and lettuces are washed and dried
garlic, onions, and fresh ginger are peeled
What is Mise en Place?
Mise en Place (MEEZ-ahn-plahs) – French culinary term that means “everything in its place.” This culinary term refers to purchasing, preparing, and pre-measuring all the ingredients necessary for a dish before you start cooking.
Mise en place makes the actual process of cooking more efficient and helps prevent the cook from making mistakes or discovering missing ingredients at a crucial moment.
This simply means that before you can even start preparing the ingredients for cooking your recipe, you want to make sure you have all the ingredients and equipment needed (the gathering and preparation of all the tools and food you need to complete the task at hand). This means pulling out your pots and pans, and every single ingredient before you even think about turning the burners on.
This practice (Mise en Place) is especially beneficial when preparing a new recipe that you have not tried before and also when preparing more than one recipe.
When you are preparing foods that you’ve made before, you only have to prepare ingredients first that you know you won’t have time to ready while cooking.
Besides for making your life easier by having all your ingredients in one place, you can check that you have everything you need before you start cooking.
If you practice this easy technique and “put everything in place” before you get started cooking, your dishes will come out better, and you will actually enjoy the act of cooking more than ever.
Using this technique is probably the single biggest difference between gourmet chefs and regular, once-in-a-while cooks.
Advantages of using this technique:
Less stress when preparing recipe.
Read the entire recipe in advance of needing to prepare it. Determine which ingredients and equipment you will need and have them nearby. Any missing ingredients that are not in your pantry can be purchased before it is too late for a quick trip to the store or your neighbor next door.
Once you have your ingredients together, prepare them so they are “cooking ready.” This can mean different things depending on what recipe your using.
Examples: Toasting nuts, clean and chop any fruits and vegetables, salads ready-to-dress, letting certain ingredients come to room temperature, premeasuring spices, preheating the oven or grill, desserts ready-to-serve.
Handing or preparing ingredients BEFORE cooking rather than in the midst of another preparation step when time delays may affect food quality.
Have everything measured and ready to be used in separate bowls or cups (or combined if the ingredients are being cooked at the same time).
Purchase a set of 4 or more small “mini” bowls. They come in different sizes and may hold from about 1 to 3 ounces. You can group ingredients or place them in the order used to assure all recipe steps are included.
If I am preparing a meal for a large gathering or a dinner party, I will prepared my ingredients sometimes a day in advance or even more (depending on the ingredient and the dish I will be making). I will always have the ingredients prepared and ready to use at the last minute before cooking. The various dishes are finally cooked, plated, and served. This way, I do not have to spend all my time in the kitchen, but can enjoy my guests.
This technique makes complicated recipes more fun to prepare when you’re no longer doing a juggling act, trying to complete several tasks simultaneously.
You will not overcook foods while trying to prepare the next ingredients for another dish.
Do not forget food safety as you cook:
Prepare your work space by starting with a clean kitchen. There is also time to clean the mixing area as you go along rather than face a counter full of mixing equipment when you’re done.
Fill your sink with hot soapy water to put your dirty dishes in as your cook. When preparing food, keep surfaces and utensils clean. Surfaces are not just counter-tops and cutting boards do not forget to clean your utensils, too. Check out the Golden Rules of Food Safety.
Wash you hands between each cooking task!
A simple trick that I use, is to fill my kitchen sink with hot, sudsy water. This serves two (2) purposes for me.
When preparing food, I can toss the dirty dishes into the hot water as I cook. This make for easier cleanup. As you cook, stick your hands in the water to clean.
Check out all of Linda’s Cooking Hints & Tips Resource Index to help you with your cooking and baking.
How to use a Crepe Pan
Once your batter has had time to rest in the fridge, it is finally time to cook them! Cooking them is probably the more 'technical' part of this recipe, as it takes a bit of training to get the perfect round and thin crepe.
Don't worry though, you will get the hang of it very quickly if it is your first time! To cook the Crêpes, you could use a simple Non-Stick Pan or Skillet but I have found that I get the best results with a proper Crêpe Pan .
With a regular Non Stick Pan, you will need to pour some batter on your pan held on an angle, then move and rotate the pan to spread the batter and create a round shape. A bit tricky.
Alternatively, with my Chasseur Crepe Pan, I simply had to pour some batter in the centre of the hot pan and use the Crepe Spreader in a circular movement to create the perfect crepe shape.
The spreader also helps to make extremely thin crepes - which would be almost impossible to get with a regular pan. And because most Crepe Pans are heavy cast iron pans, the heat will transfer much more quickly and more evenly too.
The last step is to flip the crepes. Although it is very tempting to attempt to flip it in the air (of course I do it all the time, it's so much fun!), the "safest" way to flip a crepe is with a spatula. To avoid damaging the pan, you should always use a wooden spatula instead of a metal one that could scrap the surface of the pan.
How to make croissant dough
Although there are many croissant recipes available, there are few variations from one to the other. After all, croissants almost always have the same ingredients, only the proportions vary. At the beginning it is normal to follow strictly the available formulas. But there is no perfect formula, especially because each of us uses different ingredients in different places. Using the same formula we would obtain different results depending on the type of flour we have and depending on the place we live (it is not the same to make croissants in Madrid, where the climate is very dry, than in the North of Spain, very rainy and humid).
The success of a recipe depends not only on the ingredients and the steps to follow, but also on other factors more complex to control such as the ambient temperature, the degree of humidity, the temperature of the dough after kneading, the power of the oven, etc. That is why it’s important to investigate, to try different flours and butters and to modify the quantities according to our needs, but also to be very methodical in all the phases of the process, i.e. to control the temperature of the dough and the proofing times, to let the dough rest between the folds, etc. Only then we will achieve a final product according to our requirements.
The formula that I propose below is nothing exceptional: I have been testing and adapting different recipes of great pastry chefs (Thomas Marie, Pierrick Challamel, Philippe Conticini, Daniel Alvarez, among others) to find a formula adapted to my needs.
For the croissant initial dough (détrempe)
300 g strong flour (Lievitati from Molino Pasini) (100%)
80 g cold water (26.6%)
79 g cold semi-skimmed milk (26.4%)
45 g sugar (15%)
30 g unsalted butter (softened) (10%)
6 g salt (2%)
9 g fresh yeast (3%)
2 g malted barley (0.6%)
171 g butter (31% of the total détrempe weight)
Day 1 (Saturday)
– 7:00 pm: make the détrempe and chill it in the freezer.
– 7.30 pm: prepare the butter block and keep it in the fridge overnight.
– 8.30 pm: remove the détrempe from the freezer and store it in the fridge overnight.
Day 2 (Sunday)
– 8.00 am: start laminating, first fold.
– 9.00 am: second fold
– 10.00 am: third fold
– 11.30 am: cut and shape the croissants and let them ferment
– 2.30-3.00 pm: bake the croissants
DAY 1 – SATURDAY
7.00 pm – Détrempe (initial dough)
Place all ingredients, except the butter, into the bowl of the stand mixer and knead about 4 minutes at minimum speed.
I insist on the fact that the liquids have to be very cold to prevent the dough from overheating and begin to ferment during kneading. The temperature of the dough at the end of the kneading phase should not exceed 22 degrees C.
On the other hand, you may have to adjust the hydration percentage depending on the water absorption capacity of your flour, taking into account that the more hydrated is the dough, the harder it’ll be to get an open crumb (however the dough will be easier to laminate). After 4 minutes, add the softened butter and continue kneading 3 or 4 minutes at the same speed.
We have to develop the gluten so that the dough supports the later phase of integration of the butter, but not 100%, since we will continue to develop gluten during laminating. A kneading between 8 and 10 minutes is usually enough, although everything will depend on the flour your use and on the power & type of your stand mixer. Strong flours require a soft and slow kneading to avoid giving too much tension to the dough. We do not want too much gluten development because we will struggle extending the dough during laminating. The final dough has to have a smooth texture and with some elasticity (but not too much), and does not have to stick to your hands or the work surface.
When the dough is ready, shape it as a disc with the palm of your hand so it can cool faster, wrap it well in plastic wrap and place it inside a freezer bag. Put the dough in the freezer so that it cools quickly, without it becoming frozen (between an hour and an hour and a half depending on the temperature of your freezer).
[Note: all videos have English subtitles. You can turn them on by clicking the Settings wheel in the lower part of the screen.]
Some formulas state that it’s possible to completely freeze the détrempe for a later use. I do not recommend it since the yeast weakens and even dies depending on the freezing time. It is better to give it a cold snap and keep it in the refrigerator (in the coldest part) until the next day.
Important note regarding the temperature of the détrempe
Don’t forget that we do not want the détrempe fo ferment before laminating. We want it to rest in the cold so that it relaxes and can be extended more easily. The experts say that to avoid the dough to start fermenting, the temperature has to be less than 6 ºC. However, the temperature of our refrigerators is usually much higher, although it indicates otherwise. Ideally, place a thermometer in the fridge to check the actual temperature and adjust it based on the thermometer value.
Our détrempe is ready and has to rest until the next day. You cannot make croissants being in a rush. The détrempe has to rest in cold for at least 12 hours (at a suitable temperature, I insist). I have tried to make croissants the same day but the results are much worse.
7.30 pm – Shaping butter
Before going to bed, you must give the butter the right shape and thickness to be able to laminate the next day. Before cooling the détrempe, weigh it in order to calculate the percentage of butter that you will need to laminate. In this case, my dough weighs 551 grams and I want to use 31% butter on the total weight: 551 x 31/100 = 171 g.
Just before going to bed, my advice is to leave the kitchen windows open: the colder the kitchen is, the better! Working in a cold environment (less than 18 ºC) is one of the keys to success for laminating. When it comes to handling butter it has to stay cold at all times (that’s why it’s almost impossible to make croissants in the summer: the butter melts and it’s impossible to laminate properly!). I also recommend you to put blocks of ice in the freezer so you can place them the next day on your work surface in order to keep it cold between the folds. The best material to laminate is marble, because it keeps cold, but steel or wood also works. Later I’ll talk about the temperature and texture that should have the dough to start laminating.
DAY 2 – SUNDAY
8.00 am – Laminating: enclosing butter in the détrempe and first fold
The détrempe has rested all night in the fridge and the butter is shaped. We can start laminating. As I have mentioned before, it is very important to work in a cold environment!
What is the ideal texture of détrempe and butter befor laminating?
Some croissant recipes state that to laminate correctly the détrempe and the butter must be at the same temperature. Well, this not quite correct. We shouldn’t think in terms of temperature, but in terms of texture or plasticity. Now, for butter and détrempe to have the same texture, their temperature cannot be the same. Butter tends to heat faster than the dough, so the dough (which is the one that seals the butter) has to be colder. As a general rule, I work with a dough at 8 or 9 ºC and with a butter between 11 and 13 ºC. You should control the temperature at all times with an infrared thermometer, although it’s very important to feel it with your hands, especially the butter: it has to be cold, but malleable (i.e., you should be able to bend it without breaking it: this is plasticity). If the butter is too soft and hot, it will come out of the dough during laminating and will end up mixing to the dough instead of creating layers. If, on the other hand, the butter is too hard and cold, it will end up cracking and you won’t be able to create layers. If you see that the butter and/or the dough heat up too much, do not hesitate to interrupt the process and cool them down.
9.00 am – Second fold
How many folds are needed for croissants?
As a general rule, croissants are given 1 double fold and 1 single fold, or 3 single folds. Although the more folds, less volume, I always do 3 simple folds because it is more practical: I find it easier to extend the dough with a simple fold. The double fold requires more strength and we may apply too much pressure and break the layers of dough/butter.
10.00 am – Third fold
Repeat the process indicated in the previous video, wrap the dough in plastic film and let it rest an hour or an hour and a half in the fridge.
11.30 – Cutting and shaping
We have given the last fold and the dough has rested in the refrigerator (the last rest before shaping is longer, minimum one hour). Now we must rolling it out to cut the croissants before shaping.
Straight or half-moon croissants?
There is a debate among purists about whether the croissant should be straight or half-moon. According to experts, a butter croissant has a straight shape, while a half-moon croissant is made with shortening. However, in the past it was the other way around: shortening appeared almost a century after the croissant was invented, so originally the real butter croissant had a half-moon shape (hence its name). With modernization and global economy, it was more expensive to produce butter croissants, so the shortening croissants (which takes less space and is more profitable) invaded the market. I choose the straight shape because it is simpler: I only have to roll the dough on itself once cut into triangles. The half-moon shape requires more technique.
12.00 am – Proofing
Our croissants are shaped and need to proof. To do this, we must place them on a non-stick tray (or covered with baking paper), leaving enough space between each croissant.
Is it possible to freeze shaped croissants in order to proof them at a later time?
It’s possible although as I’ve already told, freezing and yeast are not quite compatible. If you decide to freeze the croissants, you always have to do it after shaping and before proofing just place them carefully inside a freezing bag tightly closed. Of course, you should not keep them long in the freezer, since yeast will end up dying. When you are ready to bake them, let them de-freeze before proofing.
Proofing is a key point that requires time so we cannot be in a hurry. When we work with fermented doughs, we usually have the bad habit of wanting to accelerate the fermentation process (i.e. by placing the dough near a heat source or in a preheated oven). For croissants, I do not recommend it for a simple reason: we have spent time and effort in laminating the dough so that our croissants come out the best we can and we do not want excess heat to melt the butter and spoil all our work. As a general rule, croissants must ferment at a temperature between 21 ºC and 24 ºC (and a humidity rate of approx. 75-80%). For this, it is very useful to have a thermometer at home that indicates the temperature and humidity. Therefore, it is preferable to leave the croissants ferment at room temperature in the warmest room of the house (which is usually the kitchen). Or directly inside the oven (off and without preheating). If it is too cold in your house, you can try to leave the oven light on (the temperature will rise a few degrees), but always watching that it does not exceed the maximum fermentation temperature.
Humidity is harder to control. In dry environments, as we are not professionals and we do not have fermentation chambers, the only thing left for us is to create a humid environment ourselves. The most effective option I have found is to place a bowl of hot water (at about 70 ºC, warmed up with a kettle) in the oven’s sole (as far as possible from the tray where the croissants are). The croissants are left to ferment with the oven door closed, placing the thermometer inside to control the temperature and humidity at all times. The water does not get to heat the environment excessively (since it cools quickly), but the humidity increases.
How do we know that croissants are proofed and ready to bake?
As with bread, fermentation is one of the most difficult processes to control.
The finger test that we usually use for the bread dough (light pressure with the fingertip on the surface to check if the dough has fermented correctly) does not work for croissants. After fermentation, the croissant dough is very delicate and it is better not to touch it. The test will have to be visual.
The proofing time will depend on the above mentioned factors and you will have to control the croissants, which more or less have to double their initial volume (not more). However, the biggest the croissant is after shaping (that is, the more rolls you have given on it), the more time it will take to ferment. In my case, the croissants fermented 3 hours at about 24 ºC and an approximate humidity of 80%.
3.00 pm – Baking
Preheat the oven to 190 °C (convection) for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, introduce the tray of the proofed croissants in the fridge. Cooling the proofed croissants before baking them help us to coat them with egg wash more easily without crushing them. On the other hand, the contrast between cold and heat will help development in the oven.
After 15 minutes, take the tray out of the fridge and give the croissants a coat of egg wash (either only with egg or with a mixture of yolk & cream or milk). During this operation it is very important to wash ONLY the smooth parts and avoid washing the layers (otherwise the egg will seal the layers preventing them from expanding correctly).
Bake at 190 ºC between 17 and 20 minutes depending on the size of the croissants, taking care not to open the oven.
Is it necessary to produce steam in the oven to bake the croissants?
It’s not. If your initial dough was rather dry, you may want to produce steam during the first 5 minutes of baking. But it’s general not necessary, especially if you have fermented the croissants in a humid environment as I mentioned earlier.
When the croissants are browned and ready, remove them from the oven and let them cool completely on top of a rack.
How to keep the croissants once baked?
Homemade croissants are best eaten when freshly baked! If you want to keep them fresh, place them in a wooden box covered with a clean cloth.
If the next day they have dried a little, a few seconds in the microwave will make them crispy again. You can also toast them, they are delicious!
Best Smart: GE Profile PVD28BYNFS 27.9 cu. ft. Smart 4-Door French Door Refrigerator with Door-in-Door
A flexible, functional French door unit with plenty of space, this GE model has a door-in-door design, making it easy to grab items without fully opening the fridge. For the family with children, this function makes for added space to store snacks and drinks (and this is an extremely spacious model, with 15.7 cubic feet of space in the main fridge, plus a 3.6-cubic-foot drawer).
For the technology-savvy household, this fridge's built-in Wi-Fi can give you real-time alerts on your phone, plus connecting with Alexa, Sonos, and Google Assistant. An ice and water dispenser comes with an AutoFill option that senses how much space is left in your glass. The fridge’s interior has an LED light wall so that you can easily see groceries. It also has soft-closing doors.
A drawback here is that this is a large unit, and not everyone will have space for a 70-inch tall, 36-inch wide refrigerator. With that said, those with ample kitchen space might want to consider this unit, since it cuts back on the need to keep an additional refrigerator or freezer unit elsewhere, like in the garage or basement.
Dimensions (DxWxH): 36.75 x 35.6 x 70 inches | Capacity: 27.9 cubic feet
You can top your yogurt cake with anything you’d like, including fresh fruit or a fruit jam.
Other favorite toppings include crème fraîche and ice cream.
When I eat a slice for breakfast, I often add nothing and simply enjoy its lovely texture and aroma on its own with a cup of coffee.
The cake has a tender, moist, and fluffy texture, with a crumb that melts in your mouth, flooding your senses with the warm taste of vanilla and sugar.
In a way, this French yogurt cake recipe can be thought of as a lighter and fluffier version of the American pound cake. I highly recommend giving this cake a try the next time you’re in the mood to bake something perfectly sweet and easy!