Adapted from Making Dough by Russell van Kraayenburg. Available for purchase at Now You’re Cooking. 

Buttery. Flakey. Tastes like a mini trip to France. It’s an intimidating bake to attempt, but Louisa is up to the task!


1½ C Milk, heated to 115° F

1 T Active Dry Yeast

1½ oz Sugar

4 T Unsalted Butter, melted

20 oz All Purpose Flour

2 t Salt

12 oz Unsalted Butter (3 sticks)

½ oz Flour

1 Egg, whisked with 1 T water for your eggwash


Heat milk to 115° F. 

Warm a bowl by running hot water over the outside, then place the milk and yeast in it and stir to dissolve. 

Add sugar, and slowly pour in melted butter while stirring. 

Add flour and salt and stir to form dough.

Knead for two minutes, then rest for 20 minutes covered with a towel.

Shape into a rough rectangle, then roll out into a 12 x 16” rectangle. Cover and rest for 20 minutes. Dough should stay fairly cool, so if it’s warm in your kitchen, place it in the fridge.

Making Dough


(This can be done ahead)

Bring butter to room temperature and mix well with flour.

Shape into a 6” square, then place between 2 pieces of parchment and roll out into a 10×12” rectangle. Refrigerate until firm. 



Place the butter on two-thirds of the dough, leaving a 1/2” edge.

Fold the butterless side 1/3 of the way over the butter.

Fold the other buttered side over the fold.

Diagram of Placing Butter Block

Wrap tightly in plastic and refrigerate until firm.

Complete the following steps refrigerating as needed, until butter is completely worked into the dough:

  1. “Whack” the dough with a rolling pin, starting at the top left-hand corner and working diagonally across the dough. Then, starting at the top right-hand corner, work diagonally across again.
  2. Roll dough into a 12×16” rectangle. Fold in thirds like a business letter, or do a “book fold”, and repeat the process. This is ONE TURN.
  3. Repeat up to 6 turns, refrigerating in between to let the dough rest, and keep cool. You can refrigerate for 15-20 minutes, then let rest on the counter for 5 minutes or so to make it easier to roll.
  4. When you’ve completed your 6 turns, wrap loosely (it will rise!) in plastic and refrigerate overnight.

Diagram of a Book Fold


Remove prepared dough from the refrigerator after letting it chill 12-18 hours, or overnight.

Roll dough out to about 1/8” thick. If possible, roll into a very uniform rectangle.

Folding Croissant Diagram

Cut dough into long, narrow triangles.

Cut a short notch into the short end, then, stretching the corners gently, roll into a crescent shape. Place on a baking sheet to rise in a warm place. (Make sure the thin tail end is tucked underneath.)

Preheat the oven to 425° F.

After croissants have about doubled in size, GENTLY brush with egg wash. (Don’t deflate!)

Place in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes. (Less if you are making mini croissants.)

Croissants should be a dark golden brown and glossy.

Allow to cool on the baking sheet.

Serve warm with butter, jam, lemon curd or what-have-you.

Pain au Chocolat


Before rolling your croissants, you can fill with chocolate chips, ham and cheese, or another filling of your choice. Make sure all seams are sealed so your filling doesn’t ooze out.

Louisa with Croissants