I’ve been wanting to make croissants again but haven’t had the time With the rolling, folding, and endless waiting, not to mention the fact that the dough needs to be used between 8 and 18 hours, the timing just hasn’t worked. So, I decided to look for a nice alternative in Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day. This is the perfect book for those who crave homemade bread but don’t have the time.
I’ve made their rustic, peasant loaves a few times, but have never tried any of their pastry recipes. They didn’t have a one for croissants, but they had one for brioche. It’s not exactly in the same category as puff pastry, however, both have a common interest in butter. Good enough for me.
The recipe was simple and easy to follow, but for some reason my dough didn’t rise. My butter wasn’t completed melted, so that may have been the cause. My loaf also turned out a little dense, which may have been because I over baked them a little bit. (wow, today has been a really off day!) When I imagine brioche, I imagine dinner rolls with wings: light and soft. Mine felt like a mix between muffins and farmer’s bread. Interesting, but no one seemed to mind because the flavors were there. I definitely want to make this brioche again to see if the shortcomings were me or the recipe. I’m guessing it was probably me.
Adapted from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day
3/4 cup lukewarm water
3/4 tablespoon granulated yeast
3/4 tablespoon salt
4 eggs beaten lightly
1/4 cup honey
1 1/2 sticks or 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 egg, beaten for egg wash
In a large bowl, mix water, yeast, salt, eggs, honey, and melted butter together. Add the flour and incorporate until dough comes together. Set aside, covered for 2 hours. The dough should rise and then fall to form a flattened top. Chill and use within 5 days.
On baking day, butter loaf pan. If using a standard 9 x 4 x 3 inch pan, cut off 1 lb of dough. Dust with flour and form into a ball. Pull to elongate and fit the length of pan. If using smaller loaf pans, use 1/2 lb of dough. Let rest for 1 hour and 20 minutes. Before baking, brush top with egg wash.
Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 35-45 minutes or 25-30 minutes for smaller loaves.