I don’t remember ever having a biltong croissant, do you? Why aren’t they more popular? I mean, it’s basically a biltongbroodjie, but with an unmistakably buttery, crispy-crunchy Parisian touch. Whoever said croissants should be left to the professionals didn’t know what they were talking about. Given, they’re not as simple as making crumpets, but all you need to remember is to keep the pastry as cool as possible when you’re working with it. For the rest, just follow the recipe. If you’ve never made a croissant, let this homegrown treat be your first batch!
TIME: 6 hours 30 minutes | SERVES: 4-6
for the dough
5 g dried yeast
120 ml milk
125 g Snowflake white bread flour
125 g Snowflake cake flour
5 g salt
30 g sugar
8 g honey
50 g butter
125 g butter
50 g biltong powder
for the egg wash
25 g whole egg
20 g egg yolk
25 ml milk
Combine the milk and dried yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer. Add the remaining ingredients, except for the 125g butter and biltong powder. Fit the stand mixer with a dough hook and knead the dough at a low speed for 4 minutes, then at a medium speed for another 6 minutes. The dough should be soft and elastic. Shape the dough into a ball, place in a bowl and cover, allowing it to rise for 30 minutes.
Place the dough on the surface and flatten using a rolling pin, roughly into the shape of a rectangle. Place the dough disk on a baking sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Again with a rolling pin, flatten the butter into a square disk (roughly 13 cm x 13 cm) and place on the left side of the rolled-out dough. Fold the dough over the butter and ensure the butter is completely enfolded. Fold in the edges and seal them well.
On a floured surface, roll the dough into a rectangle (20 cm x 50 cm). Make a double fold by folding the right quarter of the dough over towards the middle, and then do the same with the left quarter. Then, fold the dough in half (like you would close a book). Place the dough in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Remove the dough from the fridge and place on a floured surface in its length in front of you. In other words, the dough book’s sides must be on the left and right with the bottom closest to you and the top facing away from you. Roll the dough out into a larger rectangle (20 cm x 50 cm). Make a single fold by folding a third of the dough from the right, just over the middle of the dough, following with the left side. Rotate the dough 90° to the right and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Place the chilled dough on a floured surface and roll out into a rectangle (25 cm x 50 cm), then cut the dough in half.
for the croissants
With the one piece of dough, use a knife to mark one long side of the dough at 5 cm intervals. Do the same on the other long side of the dough. Cut the dough into triangles by matching up the knife marks. Take each triangle and mark the center of the triangle base with a small incision (2,5 cm). Gently stretch each triangle with your hands. Sprinkle the surface of each with biltong powder. Gently roll the triangle up from the base to the tip. Repeat with each triangle.
Place the croissants on a non-stick baking tray. Whisk the egg wash ingredients together and gently brush each croissant evenly with egg wash. Place a bowl filled with boiling water in a cool oven (25° C) and place the tray with croissants above it. Allow the croissants to rise for 2 hours.
Remove the croissants from the oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes. Pre-heat the oven to 180° C. Brush them with egg wash again, place in the oven and bake for 16 minutes or until golden brown.
for the squares
Use a non-stick square baking pan (brownie tray with dividers) and remove the grid from the tray. Take the other half of the dough and press the grid down onto the dough to cut squares. Place the grid back in the tray. Take the dough squares and place one in each of the centre squares of the tray (4 in the middle). Brush each square with softened butter and sprinkle with biltong powder. Layer with another piece of dough, brush with softened butter and sprinkle with biltong powder. Place the last piece of dough on top. Brush the squares with egg wash.
Place a bowl filled with boiling water in a cool oven (25° C) and place the tray above it. Allow the cubes to rise for 2 hours.
Remove the cubes from the oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes. Pre-heat the oven to 180° C. Brush them with egg wash again, place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.