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Posts Tagged ‘baking

Croissant Challenge: Failure Guaranteed

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I have really wanted to bake croissants for a while, and it is such a bizarre desire since I don’t even like it that much. I know a lot of people drool over for those flaky butter-rich pastries like croissants and pains au chocolat any time, but I really don’t. Anyway I just wanted to give it a shot, just to see how high of skill set  I have developed for last 7,8 years of self-taught amateur baking.


And the result is… not that pretty as you can see it for yourself. The problem was that, a major disaster happens at the very last step, cutting it triangular shape. Following the recipe of America’s Test Kitchen, I rolled the dough, folded in half, cut into triangular pieces, and the unfold… not! I couldn’t unfold double layered triangles as they just stuck when folded in half. It had been about 9 hours passed since the beginning of the process, so I just wanted to cry and throw it away, quit. But it also meant that the hours already had spent would be wasted, with all the expensive French butters I had put into the dough as well.  So I tried really hard to salvage the dough by putting the pieces into a mass again. After chilling the dough enough, I divided it with four pieces and then rolled, cut, and shaped: not to repeat the same mistake. I should have floured the dough firsthand. I know, I know.


And the result is like this. It tasted OK, but that is not all for the croissant, so I ended up concluding that my skill set isn’t really that great. I saved half of rolled dough to make something else, but do not expect it to be great. After getting through all this, I reconfirm the conclusion I had made when challenging for the macaron: there is something you should never try as an amateur. Just enjoying something the professional does can make everybody happier, as the professional earn money, the amateur gets happy. The problems is that, there are a lot of pseudo professionals, and the macaron has become the laughingstock if pastry work in Korea as you can find all the bad ones permeate every coffee places and bakeries.


Written by bluexmas

April 19, 2012 at 8:15 pm

Posted in baking

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Project Sandwich Loaf

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I have been dabbling in baking for quite some time, and I’ve had some OK breads like ciabattas and country loaves. However when it comes to sandwich loaf, struggle is the right word representing the outcome. More than anything, the outlook never matches with store bought ones; I never have one rises really well.

That is why I decide to practice baking sandwich loaf with same recipe, at least ten times, without too much of high expectation. The first goal is to have right shape which is only by proper implementation of fermentation.

And the one in the picture above is the third one. I have been baking with same recipe about once in a week. The recipe is originally from <Baking Illustrated>, but I adjust the amount of all purpose flour to add whole wheat flour with the ratio of 3:1. The recipe calls for milk, but I substitute it with water since  but I wanted to test it out with water first.

The most important feature of the recipe is that you use the oven for fermentation to make it rise rapidly. I don’t have real good sense to recognize when I finish the second fermentation, which is for the shape, and I guess I got it a little better this time. This one looks real store bought sandwich bread at least by appearance. Unfortunately, the texture lack a bit as it felt a bit dry and crumbly. However, I was satisfied at the the shape was right. This one stayed about 5~10 minutes longer in the oven that I originally intended, until when I had the oven heat around 130 degree Celsius or so. For next one, I am planning to try cold rise for the first fermentation. I like to do cold rise, but never done for the sandwich loaf.

Written by bluexmas

November 7, 2010 at 9:20 pm