When I took my laminated dough class in San Francisco this past summer, I thought for sure I would come home and bake perfect croissants every time. I mean, I just spent 2 days with a renowned French pastry chef, one on one, what else would I need? But, as with everything that takes practice, they did not bake perfectly when I got back to Texas. It has taken a solid 6 months for me to FINALLY have really good croissants bake every time.
It’s all about the temperature and pressure (and quality of ingredients, always). Nothing likes to be overheated (or freezing) or man handled. My butter was too cold, and I was pressing the dough down too hard with my pin. I was mushing it all together and breaking the butter.
Now, I let my butter sit on the counter for 5 or 10 minutes before beating it to make it pliable for folding into the detrempe. I also roll it out gently and thicker. I have my fridge turned up a little higher, so the butter doesn’t harden too much while resting.
They aren’t prefect, but I am getting there, one croissant at a time. Have you tried one yet?