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How To Make Chocolate Croissants Without Taking An Entire Day


I’ll say it like it is — so crappy — that’s what I think of my 12-year old son’s favorite chain grocery chocolate croissants, pictured above. Really look at them. Knowing that I am a former pastry chef, can you feel my pain? This for a child who dreams of visiting Paris one day, and for me, who opens the little box holding the engagement ring I stashed there since my divorce and thinks of hocking it for the trip . . . then puts it back thinking of more practical things like saving for college.

People are surprised when they ask what my favorite pastries are and I answer with ubiquitous things like croissant or eclairs. They don’t know how extraordinary these things are fresh and homemade. If they did, they would agree. So I am going to make chocolate croissants for my son for Valentines Day, and I’m going to show you how too.

Bakers and cooks are always telling people, “Oh, you can do this recipe ahead, or in small steps over the course of a few days,” but they never really explain this. Few people know what this means. It’s overwhelming. So this is a bake-with-me post. It’s no mystery and it’s not that hard. All you need is a guide and a little gumption.

Here’s the plan:

Get your ingredients before next Wednesday, February 10th.

We’ll make the dough next Thursday, February 11th and refrigerate it.

We’ll add the butter and learn to fold it in on Friday, February 12th.

Then Saturday, February 13th, we’ll roll out and shape the croissant.

If all goes well, we have them for brunch on Sunday morning, February 14th, Valentine’s Day.

I’m giving you this heads-up to get your ingredients.
Are you game? Good. Here’s your ingredient list:

2 cups flour
4 T. sugar
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1 1/2 envelopes of dry yeast
3 sticks sweet unsalted butter
extra flour for rolling
1 egg, for egg wash
your favorite semi-sweet chocolate - the amount depends on how stuffed with chocolate you like your croissant. For me, I buy at least 8 - 12 ounces.
You also may want to have a quick-read thermometer handy unless you are good at guessing the temperature of warm milk by description (in this case it will need to be warm like a baby’s bottle - 105 degrees F.)

See you next week!

To access all four posts showing How To Make Chocolate Croissant Without Taking An Entire Day, click the links here: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4

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What a great idea! I’m hoping I can do this…

Any flour guidelines? Type? Brand?

    –  (February 05 2010 at 1:01)

Thanks for reminding me Annette. Yes, I use unbleached all-purpose flour. I like the King Arthur brand, but you can use your favorite. See you next week on Jellypress!

    – Nancy Ring (February 05 2010 at 8:26)

Oh YUM! I’ve already got the ingredients. Ready and waiting!! smile

    – TheMuffinMom (February 05 2010 at 9:54)

L’pain au choclat!  Sounds like a wonderful way to sweeten up my Valentine.
I’ll give it a try!
luv you!

    –  (February 06 2010 at 2:52)

I’m going to give this a try this weekend. Thanks again for a wonderfully simplified recipe!

    – Fortune Cookies (April 08 2010 at 3:51)

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