Saturday, January 30, 2010

National Croissant Day: Make Them Chocolate

Maybe we were sophisticated (I don't think so) or maybe my mother was a Francophile, but I remember croissants every Sunday mornings. From a bakery, I'm sure. I still adore croissants, and Chocolate Croissants are my favorites since I love bread, butter and chocolate: the three food groups.

I'm lucky enough to live in the San Francisco Bay Area where are there so many fabulous bakeries. I have sampled multiple chocolate croissants, multiple times, and my favorites are always the ones with a big chunk of chocolate in them, rather than chocolate chips, but in a pinch, I'd eat those too. One major requirement: the croissants must be light and buttery to make the entire experience perfect.

I used to bake a lot of bread, and I've made my own croissants, but as I mentioned, no need anymore. But in case you don't have great bakeries near you, here are two quick ways to have great tasting Chocolate Croissants at home.

Easy Chocolate Croissants with a Hat Tip to Nigella Lawson
These are tiny, so I give you permission to eat more than one!

1 package frozen all-butter puff pastry, defrosted in the refrigerator for 2 or 3 hours
1/4 cup broken up dark chocolate, 65-85% cacao-about one bar.
1 egg beaten with a tiny bit of water (egg wash)
gray sea salt

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Unfurl the sheet of pastry and then cut it into 6 squares.
2. Cut each square diagonally to give 2 triangles (they will appear quite small). Put the triangle with the wider part facing you and the point away from you.
3. Place broken chocolate place about 3/4-inch up from the wide end nearest you.
4. Then carefully roll from that chocolate loaded end towards the point of the triangle.
5. You should now have something resembling a straight croissant, seal it slightly with your fingertips and curl it around into a crescent. Make sure they're sealed or your chocolate will ooze.
6. Place the chocolate croissants on a foil lined baking tray and paint with egg wash (beaten egg with a little water) and sprinkle with sea salt. Bake for 15 minutes until golden and puffy and fabulous!

Don't have time to do make these, but still want Chocolate Croissants for breakfast, Trader Joe's Chocolate Croissants to the rescue! One caveat. Take these frozen croissants out the night before to defrost. The next morning when you're ready, brush with eggwash, sprinkle with a tiny bit of seasalt (optional) and bake. You'll think you're in Paris. Cost: about $4 for 4. Can't beat that! Rumor has it that this is a very similar product (same chef?) as the Croissants from Williams-Sonoma at a much higher cost.

Celebrate the Day!


Sal said...

Easier chocolate croissants. Go to Costco. Buy croissants.

Take a glass custard dish. Add a large scoop full of dark chocolate chips. Top with a pat of butter.

Zap in the microwave until the butter's melted. The chips will also have melted. Stir the butter in. (You'll have a jam-consistency spread.)

Cut open a croissant. Slather with chocolate spread. Close back up again and Zap in the microwave for a few seconds. Just enough to warm up the croissant.


Janet Rudolph said...

Love that one! The croissants at Costco in the Bay area are great.Good recipes. Easy & delicious! Thanks.

Janet Rudolph said...

Love that one! The croissants at Costco in the Bay area are great.Good recipes. Easy & delicious! Thanks.

Cleo Coyle said...

I thought you might get a kick out of this one. It's in my research file under the category: Culinary Horrors! Some time ago, I looked into the ingredients for a Dunkin' Donuts plain croissant. Below is what I found. Guess what's NOT in there: butter. Yes, there is no BUTTER in a D&D croissant. Fairly frightening! :)

~ Cleo
Mystery Lovers' Kitchen

INGREDIENTS: Enriched Unbleached Wheat Flour (Flour, Enzyme, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Water, Palm Oil, Sugar, Canola and/or Soybean Oil, Contains less than 2% of the following: Margarine [Vegetable Oils (Palm, Canola), Water, Mono and Diglycerides, Potassium Sorbate (Preservative), Citric Acid, Artificial Flavor, Vitamin A Palmitate, Vitamin D3], Yeast, Wheat Gluten, Salt, Artificial Flavor, DATEM, Dextrose, Corn Syrup Solids, Fructose, Sodium Caseinate (a milk derivative), Monoglycerides, Soy Lecithin, Locust Bean Gum, Colored with (Turmeric and Annatto Extracts), Ascorbic Acid, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Leavening (Baking Soda), Azodicarbonamide.

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

Janet Rudolph said...

Cleo, horrors, indeed! How awful!

Mary Kennedy said...

I used to have chocolate croissants for breakfast when I lived in Grenoble. Ah, nostalgia time. From the Alpes to Delaware...karma, anyone? The view outside my office window this morning looks a tiny bit like Grenoble, without the Alpes, the ski slopes and the fun little cafes.