Tuesday, May 21, 2013

TWD Savory Brioche Pockets and Croissants

If cooking, or baking, and freezing count as nesting than I've definitely hit my stride.  I spent a lot of time this weekend trying to lie down and relax, but the rest of it was spent baking.  At the back of one of my favorite baking books (Jewish Baker) there are 12 plans for "Mornings of Baking."  The idea is that if you efficiently use the time while you're waiting for one bread to rise or bake, you can get many breads done in only a few hours.  I've done this a few times, and always love having homemade bread ready in the freezer.  As long as I wrap the bread well, one morning of baking will keep us in bread for a few months.  This time I chose a plan that makes four types of bread and sourdough pancakes to enjoy during the morning of baking.  I made French Sourdough, San Francisco Sourdough, Kashi bread, and a Cranberry-Orange quick bread.  Both of the sourdoughs required starters, so I started those on Friday along with the croissant dough.  On Saturday, I kept working on the starters while also adding the butter and doing the three turns for the croissants, and making the brioche dough.

On Sunday, I was ready to bake.  I started my morning with shaping croissants.  This was incredibly frustrating because I misread the instructions, and tried to cut my first half of dough into 10 triangles.  After my failed attempt (I could only get 9 and knew they were too small) I realized that they were going to be cut in half and that I only needed 5 triangles.  I was really frustrated, but couldn't figure out how to start over, so the first half became mini-croissants.  After the croissants were shaped, I started the first bread and made pancakes for breakfast brunch.  My ambitious plan involved getting all of the baking done in the morning, and then cooking some other stuff to freeze and organizing the house (still haven't gotten to the basement!) in the afternoon, but I'm learning that in this stage of pregnancy I need to slow down.  I took a lot more breaks than I normally do, and barely got my baking done before it was time to leave for pre-natal yoga.

After yoga, I started to make the brioche pockets.  I can't believe I'm saying this, but after a weekend of dealing with croissants the brioche pockets almost felt easy!  The filling was easy to put together, and the dough was much easier to roll out and handle than my croissant dough.  After the pockets were prepared I was about to throw away my leftover scraps of dough.  Luckily, at the last second I decided to make them into a ball instead and throw it on the baking sheet with the pockets.  It came out beautifully!  We really enjoyed having brioche toast for breakfast this morning.  The pockets were excellent too.  We both absolutely loved them.  I'm hoping they freeze well because there's no way we could eat them all at once.  And the croissants?  All morning I was saying, and Paul was agreeing, that they were about the most annoying invention in the world and that they were definitely something you made once and then continued purchasing.  I had visions of telling our future child about the crazy time I was 8.5 months pregnant and decided it was a good idea to try making croissants.  Then, I baked and cooled the croissants and invited Paul in to taste one.  After one bite, he was saying that I would have to make them again after all!  My technique needs a lot of work (I couldn't stretch the triangles to anywhere near twice their length without putting tons of holes in them), but these were absolutely delicious.  Unfortunately, they don't keep that well.  I may make them again eventually, but only if we have enough guests coming over to enjoy them fresh!


  1. WOW... i am speechless :)
    (and reconsidering that idea about getting a freezer, i somehow never considered freezing baked goods)


  2. WOW is right! You are amazing - I'm worn out just reading and thinking of accomplishing something like this. Won't happen here!

  3. You are still at it! Wow.

    I wonder if that baby knows how energetic his or her mamma is :-)

    I ended up freezing half of mine before I baked them - fingers crossed that those will come out well when I bake them off.

  4. Fantastic post. I'm in awe of all your baking....and being 8.5 months pregnant and doing all that!! Everything looks wonderful. Oh and thank you for reminding me about the croissants! You're right, these brioche pockets are nothing compared to croissant making!! heehee
    That really is a good idea making more than one bread at a time. I will have to try that one day.

  5. I'm with you on the croissant making. Except, when you taste them and go "wow."

  6. That's an impressive amount of baking! The brioche pockets turned out as beautifully as the rest. Clearly you shouldn't have tasted the croissants, though - now you'll be telling stories of when you first made croissants, rather than that time you made them!

  7. Mini croissants are great, and I´m laughing at your comment! The brioche looks wonderful Jora. And so amazing all the bread baking you got done!

  8. So impressed by your bread making. Agree about the croissants, except I haven't made them again, yet!