The internet is a wonderful thing! A few months back I posted a great, super easy crescent roll recipe on my website. The ladies over at the Delphi Forum took it and improved upon it. Of course, I had to have another go at the thing, so I tweaked their version of it... The result was a delicious crescent roll, indeed.
One thing that bothered me about the recipe was the loss of the yeast, which lends itself to the flavour of the pastry. I detected a distinct 'baking powder' taste in the Delphi versions of the roll, which -although not at all objectionable - stopped short of a true croissant flavour.
The fact that the crescent roll wasn't going to rise, becuase of lack of yeast, bothered me to no end as well.
So of course, you know me...
Several tweaks later, I am proud to announce the absolutely, incontrovertably, most flaky, tender, buttery croissant you will ever eat, bar none. It also makes insanely great pain au chocolat and pigs-in-a-blanket.
I'd made my own version of Kate's 'army of crescent rolls' ... but they were literally all eaten before I could get the camera and snap a shot. Alas.
Mr. Picky... aka the hubby, says these are the real deal, and a woman at a local celiac conference (who's NOT a celiac and eats gluten as a religion, lol) wasn't aware that they were gf when she was eating one (she thought my stuff was just normal stuff for the regular vendors to eat, since it was separated from all the other samples) and was literally shocked that it wasn't a 'real' croissant.
I'll leave it to you to be the judge.
Here's my recipe. It makes 16 normal/Large sized croissants. Have fun!
The Definitive GF Croissant
2 sticks of butter, (8 Tablespoons) frozen
1 package rapid rise yeast
1/4 c warm water
1/4 c sugar
2 sticks of butter, cold
3/4 c Full Fat Sour Cream
3/4 c Full Fat Ricotta Cheese
2 1/2 cups Better Batter Gluten Free Flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda
AT LEAST 3 cups of Better Batter flour for rollign
2 egg whites, beaten with 1/4 c water, till slightly foamy, for makign the croissants beautiful
- Place yeast, water, and sugar in a bowl and set in a warm place to proof for 10 minutes, or until creamy and foamy. (This is important!)
- Cream together cold butter, sour cream, ricotta cheese, and egg until whipped, creamy and semi-yellow in color (about 3-4 minutes) - the butter should resemble cottage cheese
- Add Better Batter Flour, salt, cream of tartar, and baking soda. Mix together until the dough comes together - mostly away from the sides and begins to form a ball or lump in the middle of the mixer (about 3-4 minutes). It will still be sort of sticky!
- Divide into two portions. Shape each one into a rectangular patty about 4x6x1.5
- Place into a Ziploc bag. Refrigerate at least two hours, overnight preferred. This is important! If you're impatient like me, you can freeze it for an hour.
- Grate the frozen butter (I used my food processor) and put it into a freezer-safe storage container/bag. Return grated butter to the freezer until you are ready to use. (By the way, it will store indefinitely like this.) You can divide it at this time to make it easier.
- Work in a cool place, lay down a parchment paper or Silpat and flour heavily with about a cup of flour. You'll need a rolling pin for the next step!
- Remove one of the rectangles of dough from the fridge, and the butter from the freezer.
- Generously dust the top of the dough rectangle and roll the dough as to about 1/8 inch thickness. You should be able to see through the dough partially. I was able to roll the dough about 27” long and about 15” wide.
- Turn the dough lengthwise. Generously sprinkle the middle 1/3 of the dough with about 2-3 tbsp of the the grated, still-frozen butter. Fold up the bottom third of the pastry over the top of the middle third. Sprinkle two more tbsp or so of the grated, still-frozen butter over the top of the part you just folded on top. Fold down the top third of the dough to cover the center/butter again. If your dough is getting warm, please put it in the fridge for at least an hour (I work fast, so I don't do this).
- Generously flour the top, sides, and bottom (lift the dough gently to push flour underneath) of the dough. Repeat the rolling out thin and butter sprinkling one more time. You will sprinkle the butter on twice and roll out three times. You'll need a lot of flour, and you should be able to see the flecks of butter through the dough.
- After the round of of butter sprinkling and folding, turn the dough again and roll the dough out for it’s final time,rolling it to about 1/4 inch thick (not thicker!). Work quickly at this point as the dough is beginning to warm up again.
- Leave the dough lying flat along the parchment paper.
- Divide into long triangles with the pizza cutter (each triangle should be the full length of the long end dough - about 15 inches, with a wide end of about 4 inches. You will end up with 8 large triangles for each 1/2 of the dough. At this point you may want to fill your croissants with all kinds of goodies by placing your filling on the wide end of the triangle.
- Roll the croissant up from the wide end carefully (as the layers are thin). Seal the end (to keep it together during baking) by brushing the beaten egg white onto top ½ inch before finishing the roll. Shape into a crescent moon shape.
- Brush the completed croissants with beaten egg white (this makes them shiny and pretty).
- Lay the complete croissants on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and Let rest in a warm place for 30 minutes or so. Repeat steps 7 through 16 with the remaining dough.
- Bake the croissants at 425F for 18-22 minutes or until golden brown.