Croissants and pains au chocolate

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Okay, who doesn’t love croissants, and chocolate in croissants (pains au chocolate)? Even better! While there were a lot of steps, including a lot of refrigerator wait time they were remarkably easy, tasty and painless. In fact we ate the whole batch within a few hours (okay, I ate almost the whole batch myself!). I also made them for afternoon snacks, not breakfast… Not sure I could EVER be awake early enough to make these for breakfast! I made a few easily correctable mistakes, really stupid of me… But heck, I have nursing brain now, so it’s forgivable.

Pains-au-chocolate

Croissants
Eighteen 3 1/2 inch long croissants, or Twenty four 3 1/2 inch long Pains Au Chocolate
3/4 lbs unsalted cold butter (3 cubes)
3 Tbs flour
1 C warm whole milk
2 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
1 Tbs sugar
2 3/4 C flour
1 tsp salt
2 Tbs unsalted butter, softened and cut into small chunks
1 Lg egg slightly beaten

Place the cold butter on the counter and sprinkle it with a little of the 3 Tbs of flour and begin beating it with a rolling pin. OR mix the butter in your bosch until it’s smooth!

butter-kneaded-flour

Scrape the butter from the counter (or bowl) and rolling pin as needed and fold it over itself into a heap. Continue to work the butter until it is smooth and without lumps. Knead the rest of the flour into the butter with your hands, working quickly to keep the butter cold.

butter-filling-shapped

Place the butter on plastic wrap and shape it into a 9×6 in rectangle. Wrap and refrigerate the butter while you make the dough.

butter-chilled

Whisk the milk, yeast and sugar together and let stand about 5 mins until the yeast is dissolved.

croissant-yeast

Mix the flour salt and softened butter and then add the warm milk mixture. Mix with a fork or fingers to make the dough. Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead for a few seconds until smooth. Let the dough sit for 5 mins.

croissant-dough

Roll out the dough to a 15 x 8 inch rectangle. Sprinkle flour as needed to prevent sticking.

croissant-dough-rolled-out

Take the rectangle of butter and place over 2/3 of the dough leaving a 1 inch border on 3 of the side and about 5 inches on the other.

croissant-dough-butter

Fold over the excess 5 inches of dough…

croissant-dough-butter-folding

Then fold over the buttered side like you were folding a business letter. Seal the edges and rotate 1/4 turn.

croissant-dough-butter-folding

Roll out the dough/butter into a 18×8 rectangle…

croissant-dough-butter-rolling

Fold into thirds again and roll out and then fold again. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 mins.

croissant-dough-butter-folding-layering

Roll out the dough/butter, fold, roll, fold again. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or over night (at this point the dough can also be frozen, let thaw completely before proceeding.). From here you can make traditional Croissants or Pains Au Chocolate.

croissant-dough-butter-folding-layering

I made both! I started by cutting a row of triangles and 2 rows of squares.

croissant-dough-cut

For Croissants
Starting at the short end roll the dough to the tip, leaving the tip underneath. Place on a baking sheet at least 2 inches apart curving the ends to create the croissant shape. (you can refrigerate or freeze the shapes at this point.). Cover with a towel or plastic wrap and let rise until increased by almost half, 1-1 1/2 hours.

croissant-rising

Brush each croissant lightly with the egg. Bake at 375 for 20-25 mins.

For Pains Au Chocolate

Arrange 1/2 oz of chocolate on one edge of dough, and brush the opposite side with egg.

Pains-au-chocolate-filling

Roll into logs starting with the chocolate side and leaving the seam side down. Place on a baking sheet at least 2 inches apart. (you can refrigerate or freeze the shapes at this point.). Cover with a towel or plastic wrap and let rise until increased by almost half, 1-1 1/2 hours.

Pains-au-chocolate-rising

Brush each log lightly with the egg. Bake at 375 for 20-25 mins.

So a few notes… When first rolling out the folded dough the recipe calls for a refrigeration after the 2nd set and 4th set. I think in the future I’ll also do a short 10-15 min refrigeration break after the 1st and 3rd, just to help the butter. By the 2nd and 4th roll out the butter was squeezing through the layers quite a bit. Also don’t be afraid to really use your muscles, this isn’t a dainty pastry, but full of gluten and tough. So really roll it out well.

croissant-mistake-rising

The stupid mistake I did was brush on the egg before I let the dough rise on the croissants. The result was they were too moist and stuck to the towel, so when I pulled it away the top layers of dough came off with the towel and the gas escaped and the dough deflated. So htey aren’t very pretty, in fact they are down right ugly!

croissant

And lastly I checked them at 20 mins and they were a tad on the dark side, so I’ll check after 15 mins next time, and maybe even lower the temp a bit. (just to 350)

Pains-au-chocolate

[print_this]
Croissants
Eighteen 3 1/2 inch long croissants, or Twenty four 3 1/2 inch long Pains Au Chocolate
3/4 lbs unsalted cold butter (3 cubes)
3 Tbs flour
1 C warm whole milk
2 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
1 Tbs sugar
2 3/4 C flour
1 tsp salt
2 Tbs unsalted butter, softened and cut into small chunks
1 Lg egg slightly beaten

Place the cold butter on the counter and sprinkle it with a little of the 3 Tbs of flour and begin beating it with a rolling pin. OR mix the butter in your bosch until it’s smooth!

Scrape the butter from the counter (or bowl) and rolling pin as needed and fold it over itself into a heap. Continue to work the butter until it is smooth and without lumps. Knead the rest of the flour into the butter with your hands, working quickly to keep the butter cold.

Place the butter on plastic wrap and shape it into a 9×6 in rectangle. Wrap and refrigerate the butter while you make the dough.

Whisk the milk, yeast and sugar together and let stand about 5 mins until the yeast is dissolved.

Mix the flour salt and softened butter and then add the warm milk mixture. Mix with a fork or fingers to make the dough. Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead for a few seconds until smooth. Let the dough sit for 5 mins.

Roll out the dough to a 15 x 8 inch rectangle. Sprinkle flour as needed to prevent sticking.

Take the rectangle of butter and place over 2/3 of the dough leaving a 1 inch border on 3 of the side and about 5 inches on the other.

Fold over the excess 5 inches of dough…

Then fold over the buttered side like you were folding a business letter. Seal the edges and rotate 1/4 turn.

Roll out the dough/butter into a 18×8 rectangle…

Fold into thirds again and roll out and then fold again. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate 30 mins.

Roll out the dough/butter, fold, roll, fold again. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or over night (at this point the dough can also be frozen, let thaw completely before proceeding.). From here you can make traditional Croissants or Pains Au Chocolate.

I made both! I started by cutting a row of triangles and 2 rows of squares.

Croissants
Starting at the short end roll the dough to the tip, leaving the tip underneath. Place on a baking sheet at least 2 inches apart curving the ends to create the croissant shape. (you can refrigerate or freeze the shapes at this point.). Cover with a towel or plastic wrap and let rise until increased by almost half, 1-1 1/2 hours.

Brush each croissant lightly with the egg. Bake at 375 for 20-25 mins.

Pains Au Chocolate

Arrange 1/2 oz of chocolate on one edge of dough, and brush the opposite side with egg.

Roll into logs starting with the chocolate side and leaving the seam side down. Place on a baking sheet at least 2 inches apart. (you can refrigerate or freeze the shapes at this point.). Cover with a towel or plastic wrap and let rise until increased by almost half, 1-1 1/2 hours.

Brush each log lightly with the egg. Bake at 375 for 20-25 mins.

So a few notes… When first rolling out the folded dough the recipe calls for a refrigeration after the 2nd set and 4th set. I think in the future I’ll also do a short 10-15 min refrigeration break after the 1st and 3rd, just to help the butter. By the 2nd and 4th roll out the butter was squeezing through the layers quite a bit. Also don’t be afraid to really use your muscles, this isn’t a dainty pastry, but full of gluten and tough. So really roll it out well.

The stupid mistake I did was brush on the egg before I let the dough rise on the croissants. The result was they were too moist and stuck to the towel, so when I pulled it away the top layers of dough came off with the towel and the gas escaped and the dough deflated. So htey aren’t very pretty, in fact they are down right ugly!

And lastly I checked them at 20 mins and they were a tad on the dark side, so I’ll check after 15 mins next time, and maybe even lower the temp a bit. (just to 350)
[/print_this]

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Ashlee
Ashlee has been cake decorating for 8 year, and blogging for 6+. She has 5 children ages 2-12 that she enjoys throwing parties for. She loves to bake, cook, crochet, knit, do home improvement, graphic design, photography and writing.
Ashlee
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Comments

  1. says

    Pain au chocolat is one of my favorites! I’ve always been intimidated by the dough but this looks doable! Pinning to try . Saw you over at Flamingo Toes!

    • says

      the first time I had pain au chocolat I was actually in Tokyo! And I still remember how totally life changing it was. I could eat them every day for breakfast with hot chocolate!