A quick alternative to the classic laminated croissants. Obviously, it’s not flaky and less fancy, but you will be surprised by their nice texture, the slightly sweet crust, and the fragrant smell that will spread all over your home.
I have started making these croissants years ago even before trying or learning how to make the classic laminated buttery version. I wanted to try something new from the usual cookies or cakes, but I was also a busy college student and I needed something quick to make. This recipe calls for plain croissants, but you can easily add a little bit of fruit compote or jam inside them. My favourite mix with whole grain croissants is homemade mixed berries or redcurrant jam.
(makes 6 large)
For the dough:
200 g whole grain spelt flour
150 g whole grain wheat bread flour
approx. 150-180 ml water
25 g unsalted butter
½ tsp honey
7 g dry yeast (or 20 g fresh yeast)
optional: ½ tsp lemon zest (preferably organic)
To use on top:
2 tbsp almond/hazelnut drink
½ tsp date syrup (or honey)
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
approx. 2 tsp crushed pumpkin seeds
Prepare the butter into small pieces and wait to use it until it’s soft (but not melted). Stir the yeast and honey into a little bit of lukewarm water in a cup (use approx. ½ cup of water) and mix well until it’s dissolved. In a large bowl, prepare the flour and lemon zest if you are using it. Start adding the mixture to the dissolved yeast and mix well: keep adding water slowly while mixing (depending on the flour that you are using you may need more or less water). Mix well until you obtain a nice shaped dough (you can use a spoon at the begin and your hand from halfway if you are not using a mixer). Start adding the butter piece by piece: add the next one just when the previous is well incorporated into the dough. You should get a nice elastic dough. Knead it on a floured surface for a couple of minutes, until you get a smooth and even more elastic dough. Put the dough in a bowl, cover it and let rise for approx. 1-1½ hours or until it’s doubled in size. Again, knead the dough a little on a floured surface, divide it into 2-3 parts and prepare an even layer with each of them (approx. 7-8 mm thick). Cut the dough into strips (approx. 20 cm tall) and then prepare triangles 20 cm tall with a base width of approx. 10 cm. Add a little bit more flour on the surface if the dough begins to stick. Now you are ready to shape the final products. Place a triangle with the base towards you and stretch a little the dough (gently pull from the centre, not from the top or base). Gently roll up each croissant from the base to the top. Place on a baking tray lined with baking paper or reusable sheets. Cover the tray with a clean kitchen towel – leave enough space to rise between each croissant. Let them rise for approx. 2 hours or until they are doubled in size. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Before baking, brush the croissants gently with a little bit of almond/hazelnut drink (you will need to repeat this step again). Bake for approx. 15 min. or until they start turning slightly golden. Have a look at them from time to time, without opening the oven, to be sure that they are not burning. Reduce the heating at 180°C, remove the tray from the oven and brush the croissants with a mixture of almond/hazelnut drink, date syrup, and olive oil. Then sprinkle with the crushed seeds. Place again in the oven for 3-4 minutes. Leave to cool on a cooling rack.
You can enjoy them plain or pair with a (better homemade) compote or jam. Otherwise, you can simply pair them with some fresh fruit. Try also to prepare a savoury sandwich with a slightly toasted croissant for a different twist.
If you’d like to add a tiny amount of jam inside the croissants: place approx. 1 tsp (better choose a thick jam) close to the base of your triangle (approx. 1½ cm from the bottom).
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