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HOMEMADE CROISSANT HELP!

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hi everyone, so this is my first time making croissants from scratch and maybe it's the humidity but something seems to keep going wrong with my dough, it's nowhere near as sticky as all the recipes warn and after watching a few videos and seeing pictures it's just not coming out the same!
the dough i used last night was incorrigible, so i tossed it out and started again this morning, i knew it was too dry even when i was making it last night but it was all lumpy after the rise in the fridge. now i am using julia child's recipe as written on this blog: http://www.mamaliga.com/recipes/crois...
and although the dough is much smoother than last night's recipe, it is still nowhere near as sticky as in the photos, should the dough be super-soft and sticky? or should i be okay with a slightly denser dough? all of the videos and photos i've seen seem to have sticky and gooey dough and mine is not anything like this, even with the maximum amount of suggested liquids and this is not just one recipe!
will this still roll out the same?

(in case it makes a difference i am currently in waterloo and the temperature is 1*c and 47% humidity according to the weathernetwork

)

BTW i am kneading this by hand :( my stand mixer is back at home in vancouver.

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  1. Croissant dough should be sticky. Julia Child's recipe from Mastering the Art of French Cooking V2 works though I have not used it for over twenty years. What is the proportion of liquid to flour for your first batch? What type of flour are you using? Also, the dough does not need much kneading at all because you don't want to activate the gluten.

    3 Replies
    1. re: PBSF

      2 c all-purpose flour
      1 & 1/2 tsp instant yeast
      2 tbsp. sugar
      1 tsp. salt
      3/4 c. milk

      was the first dough recipe i used (pre-lamination), apparently it is from the bread bible. i am currently just using unbleached all purpose flour, although apparently it is advisable to use a blend of pastry and AP flour? but right now all i've got is AP so that's what i'm working with.

      my current dough from julia child's recipe has risen, and the dough is smooth, but not at all sticky. i'll give it a try but i dont think this will roll out...

      1. re: currentlycraving

        If you follow how each recipe on how to measure the flour, your proportion of flour to milk should be fine; not much difference from Julia Child's. All purpose flour is fine for croissant. My guess is that you might have kneaded the dough too much. Kneading will cause the flour to absorb the liquid and become less sticky and more elastic. I usually just give the dough a few turn.

        1. re: PBSF

          it is not sticky even when turning out of the bowl.
          the way it seems to stick to the board in the photos, never happens with my dough :P

    2. okay, now i've got butter coming out the yinyang in my 3rd turn.
      it was fine in the last turn, but now its starting to split. i think because the dough was too dry. is this still usable?

      1 Reply
      1. re: currentlycraving

        HI kids...

        Croissant are a challenge until you get the hang of it.

        I have a formula and tips on the method if you like.

        You can go to Adagiobakery@gmail.com and request the formula.

        Meanwhile...if this helps...I just answered a call for help and I"ll give you my reply to John here:

        HI John:

        The tropics will pose a problem in making the dough and rolling in the butter block.

        You have to have a cold kitchen...or work faster.

        Here are some tips:

        1. make the dough on day one and put it in the fridge overnight. You should roll it out to roughly twice the size of the butter block...let's say a half sheet pan's worth.

        2. make the butter block on the same day and keep it between the parchment paper. Lay it on top of your doght and let it chill overnight with the dough.

        3. Bring out the dough and the butter block. Make sure the butter block is pliable. I like to tap it while still in the parchment with a rolling pin. Tap until the block is again pliable...NOT SOFT!

        4. Put the block in the dough and begin with doing two single turns immediately.

        5. Place the turned dough...covered...back in the fridge. You can let it stay overnight or if you want croissant that day...let it stay in the fridge for at least an hour.

        6. Next day...or later that day...moved the turned dough into the freezer for 30 minutes.

        7. Take it out and immediately give it its third and final single turn. By now you will have 54 layers of dough and butter.

        8. Roll out the dough to 3mm (1/8"), cut into triangles and roll.

        9.Now here is where the tropics is a plus. Proof the rolls fully in 80 degree F temp high humidity for about two hours. Watch them closely. Check them in an hour...it's hot down there and this may go more quickly. They should be significantly increased in size and jiggly.

        Then go bake!!!

        Have fun.

        Let me know how you do!

        RJ
        Adagio Bakery & Cafe
        adagiobakery@gmail.com