French Croissants (makes 10-12)

Ingredients

Sponge
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour (sifted)
  • 4.2fl oz-125ml warm water
  • 4.2fl oz-125ml milk
  • 3 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 2 large eggs (free-range)
  • 2 tablespoons caster sugar
Dough
  • 21.1oz-600g plain flour (sifted)
  • 2.1oz-60g unsalted butter (soft)
  • 2.4oz-70g caster sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Butter Layer
  • 10.5oz-300g unsalted butter
  • 3 teaspoons salt
Glaze
  • 1 large egg (free-range)
  • 1 teaspoon milk

Method

  1. Start by making the ‘sponge’. In a large mixing bowl, mix the eggs, milk and water together until fully combined. add the yeast, flour and sugar and combine again. Cover the bowl with cling-film and set to one side at room temperature for 1 hour to work
  2. Meanwhile, make your butter layer so it can get solid in the fridge. Add the butter and salt to a mixing bowl and using an electric mixer, combine the two together on a low speed to the butter is smooth and easy to work with but stop mixing as soon as it is at this stage. Tip the butter out onto a large piece of parchment paper and mould into a 9” square. Place another piece of parchment paper over the top and pop into the fridge until it is needed again
  3. Once the hour is up- it is time to turn your sponge into the dough. Add the flour, caster sugar and vanilla extract and combine together using your hands. Knead the dough for 5 minutes until it is smooth. Place on top of a piece of parchment paper and shape into a 9” square like the butter. Place a second piece of parchment paper on the top and pop into the fridge for 30 minutes.
  4. Remove the dough from the fridge and add the soft butter. Knead for a further 5 minutes until it is no longer tacky- it should feel smooth and elastic. Reshape back into the square using the same paper from before and pop back into the fridge for 30 minutes
  5. It is now time to laminate your dough. Remove the dough and the butter layer from the fridge. Roll your dough square out to 12” square. Place the butter layer in the center but at the angle so it looks like a diamond. Bring the corners of the dough into the center of the butter so it is completely covered and looks like a dough parcel. Sprinkle with a little flour and flip it over. Sprinkle with flour again and roll out to roughly12”x10” rectangle.
  6. Fold the bottom half of the dough up to the centre and fold the remaining top half down to the bottom- like you would fold a piece of paper to fit in an envelope. Rotate a quarter turn and roll out again to the same dimensions. Repeat the folding process, cover with cling film and pop into the fridge for 30 minutes. You have just completed your first set of turns
  7. When the time is up, repeat the turning process of the rolling and folding twice. Re-cover and pop back into the fridge overnight
  8. When ready to proceed, cut the dough in half and keep one half in the fridge. Roll out the dough to a 12” square and cut into 6 triangles (discard the cut offs from the side). starting from the base of the triangle, roll up towards the tip and slightly bend into a ‘U’ shape. Pop onto a plate and into the fridge for 30 minutes. Repeat this process with the remaining dough that was reserved in the fridge whilst making the first batch
  9. Pre-heat oven to 428˚F/220˚C regular oven or 394˚F /200˚C fan assisted oven. Lightly grease the roaster and place half of the croissants evenly spaced out. Whisk the egg and milk together to make the glaze and brush on top of the croissants, covering them completely
  10. Pop into the centre of the oven for 12 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 356˚F/180˚C regular oven or 320˚F /160˚C fan assisted oven and continue to bake for a further 12 minutes until deep golden brown. Remove from the oven and place the croissants on a cooling rack for 15 minutes. Turn the oven back up to original temperature and repeat the baking and glazing process for the second half of the croissants
  11. Serve with butter and jam (or whatever you fancy). Once cool, store in an airtight container

Image Gallery