September 27, 2011

Daring Bakers: Grain-Free Croissants

 The Daring Bakers go retro this month! Thanks to one of our very talented non-blogging members, Sarah, the Daring Bakers were challenged to make Croissants using a recipe from the Queen of French Cooking, none other than Julia Child!

Yeah, when I read that, I got a lump in my throat. You know the kind – it was exactly like a cartoon character, facing imminent doom, swallowing that lump with the audible “gulp”. Scary.

Why so scary? Well, in addition to making gluten-free croissants (Kate over at Gluten-Free Gobsmacked has successfully made those, and they look amazing), since I really haven’t been consuming grains lately, I wanted to make them grain-free. And who has heard of grain-free, dairy-free, yeast-free croissants? Not me. But I figured I’d give it a shot. They wouldn’t be flaky in the traditional sense, but I’d try my best to make something edible and resembling a croissant.

And so I got started. I made a stiff dough and chilled it. I pounded out butter and chilled it too. I then read through the instructions posted on the Daring Bakers challenge, and in the spirit of how Julia Child makes her croissants, I folded over the dough multiple times, rolled it out, and eventually (very carefully) rolled up my croissants.

How did they come out? Well, like I said, not flaky in the traditional sense. However, they were edible. Tender even. I would have liked them a touch sweeter, actually, but overall, I was surprised that they came out. They’d definitely be tasty to dip into a sauce at dinner. It’s definitely a recipe worth investigating further.

I’ll consider this a win for me!

Grain-Free, Dairy-Free Croissants

1 c almond flour

1/2 c coconut flour

1/2 t baking soda

1 t salt

2 eggs

1/4 c non-dairy milk (I used So Delicious unsweetened coconut beverage)

1/4 c vegan butter*

1 egg white, for brushing

1 t turbinado sugar

Whisk together the almond flour, coconut flour, baking soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs until frothy and add the non-dairy milk and whisk in. Add the wet ingredients to dry and stir to incorporate. The dough should be barely sticky; add additional almond flour as needed. On a large sheet of parchment paper, pat out dough to about 1/2 inch thick. Place another sheet of parchment paper on top and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, take another sheet of parchment paper and stick the butter on it. Place another sheet of parchment paper on top, and using a roller pin, pound out the butter until it’s about 1/8 inch thick. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and sprinkle with a bit of almond flour and roll out into 1/4 – 1/8 inch thick rectangle between the two sheets of parchment (if you’re having difficulty with the parchment sticking to the dough, sprinkle with a bit more almond flour. With some care, you ought to be able to peel away the parchment and leave the dough in one piece). Scrape butter from the paper and spread out onto the top two-thirds of the dough.

spreading out butter on my not-so-rectangular rectangle of dough

Fold the bottom third up. Fold the top third over the bottom third.

dough folded into thirds

Turn the dough 90 degrees, and roll out again to 1/4-1/8 inches.

turning dough 90 degrees

Repeat the process of folding in thirds and rolling out 4 times. After it’s rolled out for the final time, cover with parchment and stick in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to an hour.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Remove the dough from refrigerator and cut into about 9 squares with a pizza cutter. Cut each square in half diagonally to make two triangles out of each square.

cutting dough into triangles

Carefully roll up each triangle into a croissant shape, and place on a lined baking sheet. Curve the ends.

rolling up croissants

Brush each croissant with the egg white, and sprinkle a bit of turbinado sugar over each.

Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown.

 *vegan butter such as Earth Balance isn’t entirely grain-free, as it has ingredients derived from corn and soy, but you could possibly substitute shortening for the vegan butter. I’d be interested to see how it turns out.

This post is linked to Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays over at Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free.

14 Responses to “Daring Bakers: Grain-Free Croissants”

  1. Daring – and brave! Well done, Alta. :) They look amazing and I wouldn’t be surprised if this recipe came into a lot of demand. People love their croissants! A chocolate version would also be good.

  2. I agree, very brave! Great job converting the recipe to make it work for you, and I think they look fabulous!

  3. HAD to click over when I received this in my email! HOW awesome! YOU go girl for being brave and trying, now I want to try them and see how they will work!! They sure look tasty (as I’m wiping crumbs from my very non-grain-free cupcake that I just had to have… lol) note to self… time for some grain free cupcakes in the freezers for those moments!!

  4. Wow—this sounds awesome! I love the idea of making croissants grain-free, but wouldn’t have thought it would work (at least if I tried it!).
    Thanks for sharing!

  5. Aww, kudos to you for trying. I think I need to borrow some of your spunk. I generally just say “no way this is going to work” and give up. Looks like you still came out with a win though.

  6. Wow! You are brave trying it grain free, dairy free, and yeast free. Nice job on the challenge!

  7. Wow. These look amazing!

  8. Wow! This is definitely worth trying. I haven’t had a croissant in years! I wonder if the new coconut Earth Balance is grain free? And thank heavens for So Delicious coconut milk. Did you know they make a coconut coffee creamer, too?

    • Charlotte – I wonder if it’s grain-free too. I went on their site but they don’t list ingredients for some reason. I’ll have to try to remember to check it out when I’m at Whole Foods next time!

  9. You are amazing! I wish I lived closer so I could’ve tested one!

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  12. I just attempted to make these and couldn’t for the life of me “roll” them into croissants. The flour crumbled instantly. How on earth did you get yours to roll?

    • Leslie – Hmm, not sure! The combo of the coconut flour and almond flour for me made it pretty pliable. What type of almond flour did you use? Maybe that makes a difference? I use Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour for everything. Bob’s Red Mill is too coarse and doesn’t hold together.

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