Sunday, June 6, 2010

Croissants, Coffee Amarettis

I have promised Bianca Croissants this weekend, she loves them and always loves to take some home. I've been using the same recipe again and again, with minor adjustments... well, my cheat way of baking...

Croissant dough was proved on Friday night.
I heated up 50b butter,
1.5 cup of milk and 1.5 Tbsp of white sugar in the microwave on high,
1.5 minutes, just enough to melt the butter and heat up the milk.
Wait until it's cooled to body temperature,
I added 2tsp of dry yeast and stirred.
15 Minutes later, I added 4 cups of strong bread flour to the liquid, 1tsp salt, 1 egg (hmm, no need for the egg but I have used it this time) and some extra plain flour for dusting. Knead the dough till elastic and smooth and not sticky, and set to prove.
2 hours later, it's almost tripled the size, and in the fridge over night.

It's rather care free now for me after making croissants for so many times, I just take it easy. In the early morning when I'm making orange juice for the family, I put out 200g of butter (original recipe yelled for more butter but certainly, that's enough - it is quite fatty after all) and let it slowly warm up. Roll out the dough to a square and fold in the butter. Basically knocked it down to as flat as I can get, and did the first fold - like a letter. Then I put it away in the fridge again, time to drop Luke off to coaching school.

Back from coaching school, second fold, back in the fridge, hubby and I and Monique went shopping, not that we enjoyed it, but hey, how else we gonna get our weekly food?
Anyway, in bewteen the shopping, picking up Luke and house work etc, I did several folds, and the dough was kept in the fridge in between folds, by the time it gets to 5pm, I decided I had the time to make them into the little croissant shapes... cut into little triangles and rolled out - ah, I do cut a tiny bit at the end....
Proved for another 45 minutes to 1 hour, brushed with egg wash and in the oven 190C for 25 min (was baking the chicken wings at the same time)
But Bianca forgot to bring them home!
And today, I was debating on what to make - I was about to make some other sweet biscuits using egg yolks so I seperated eggs last night. But didn't end up having the energy to do them, and the egg whites are still there, tempting... Amarettis or Macarons? Tossing the coins... end up with..... nothing... something in between I suppose...
Not enough almonds to make them Amarettis, not smooth enough to make them macarons, but Monique loves them just as much...

I call them Coffee Amarettis or Espresso Amarettis as the texture is closer to Amaretti rather than macarons...

2 egg whites.
100G almond meal
100g White sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
1.5 tbsp instant Espresso
Whist up a smooth meringue (I was trying to decide what to do, so I actually hand whisked the meringue) add sugar and continue whisking till it's smooth and glossy. Add in vanilla essense and sift in almond meal and espresso. fold well, pipe onto the cookie sheets and set for 1 hour (that's the macaron part isn't it?) and bake in 140c for 20-23 minutes...
They are nice as is.

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