Days 10, 11, and 12: Flaky, buttery, victorious CROISSANTS! (pain au chocolat, pain au raisins, almond croissant)
I can't sleep right now because I had some delicious yet pretty caffeinated milk tea boba this late afternoon/evening, so I decided I will go ahead and make the last post for the 12 Day Bread Challenge :). For those of you who have been reading my blog post and following me on Facebook and Instagram, thanks for coming along with my journey of the past 12 breads! It's actually been a very exciting journey, yet tiring at the same time! I actually didn't make my 12 breads in 12 days. It took me a total of 15 days to complete all 12 recipes. I skipped a day or two, and some recipes, such as brioche bread and croissants took about two days to complete, due to an overnight resting period for the bread. Nevertheless, I am done, and I am glad that I took this challenge on!
What did I really gain from this challenge? Well, a few things actually. First of all, I got to try and successfully make (for the most part) so many recipes I'd heard about and eaten a lot of, but never tried for myself. I'd never tried making Japanese red bean bread, cream pan, or melon pan, focaccia, ciabatta, bagels, or pretzels before. Now I know how to make them and which successful recipes to use in the future. Also, I realized that I actually really love Japanese breads and decided to teach a cooking class based on Japanese dessert breads in the near future (so that's another cooking class I can teach!). I actually taught a small class of 6 awesome people this past weekend, and they all loved the Japanese cream bread and sweet red bean bread, so I feel excited about teaching more people about it.
Secondly, I gained redemption from my failed croissants I made earlier last month, and I learned how to make three of my favorite types of croissants: Pain au chocolat, pain au raisins, and almond croissants! (As well as regular croissants). Thanks to a friend who came over to help, and an awesome craftsy croissant-making class, I was able to succeed! Pictured below are my first failed batch. I blame it on a faulty recipe as well as my rush to proof the croissants too fast, in too hot of heat. Third, although bread making at times seemed like a burden, I really did look forward to making a new type of bread almost every day. I felt that it gave me something to do for the day. I also enjoyed watching my friends and family enjoy my creations. I felt proud that I could make something new, successfully. Fourth, I learned about what to look for and the characteristics of a good bread dough.
A few rules I picked up:
The croissant process consisted of the following steps (some pictures of the process are below ):
Once again, thank you for joining me on this epic journey of bread making. I hope you try things that you've been wanting to try for a while, as it's a very fun learning experience!
From my kitchen to yours,
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