For the Dough:
- 1/4 cup (4 Tablespoons; 60g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 4 cups (500g) all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 Tablespoon active dry or instant yeast
- 1 and 1/2 cups (360ml) cold whole milk
For the Butter Layer
- 1 and 1/2 cups (3 sticks; 345g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 2 Tablespoons (16g) all-purpose flour
- For the Egg Wash
- 1 large egg
- 2 Tablespoons (30ml) whole milk
Make the dough:
Cut the butter in four 1-Tablespoon pieces, Add the flour, sugar, salt, and yeast, gently mix the ingredients . Then slowly pour in the milk. Once all of the milk is added, knead by hand for 5 minutes. The dough will be soft. It should mostly pull away from the sides of the bowl and if you poke it with your finger, it should bounce back. Remove dough from the bowl and, with floured hands, work it into a ball. Place the dough on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Gently flatten it out, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Shape the dough:
Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Roll it into a 14×10-inch rectangle. Be precise with the measurement.
Long rest: Place the rolled out dough back onto the baking sheet, Cover it with plastic wrap and allow it to rest in the refrigerator for 4 hours or overnight.
In a large bowl beat the butter and flour together until smooth and combined. Transfer the mixture to a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Using a spoon or spatula, smooth out into a 7×10- inch rectangle. Cover with plastic wrap, place in the refrigerator and chill the butter layer for 30 minutes. You want the butter layer firm, but still pliable.
Laminate the dough:
Remove both the dough and butter layers from the refrigerator. Place the dough on a lightly floured counter and place the butter layer in the center of the dough and fold each end of the dough over it. Seal the dough edges over the butter layer as best you can with your fingers. Roll the dough into a 10×20-inch rectangle. (It’s best to roll back and forth with the shorter end of the dough facing you) Fold the dough lengthwise into thirds, This was the 1st turn.
2nd turn: Turn the dough so the short end is facing you. Roll the dough out once again into a 10×20-inch rectangle, then fold the dough lengthwise into thirds. The dough must be refrigerated between the 2nd and 3rd turn. Place the folded dough on the baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes before the 3rd turn.
3rd turn: Roll the dough out once again into a 10×20-inch rectangle. Fold the dough lengthwise into thirds.
Long rest: Place the folded dough on the lined baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.
Shape the croissants:
Remove the dough from the refrigerator. On a lightly floured counter, roll the dough out into an 8×20-inch rectangle. Using a sharp knife, slice the dough in half vertically. Then cut 3 even slices horizontally, yielding 8 4×5-inch rectangles. Cut each rectangle diagonally to make 16 triangles.
Using your fingers or a rolling pin, stretch the triangle to be about 8 inches long. Do this gently as you do not want to flatten the layers. Cut a small slit at the wide end of the triangle, then tightly roll up into a crescent shape making sure the tip is underneath. Slightly bend the ends in towards each other. Repeat with remaining dough, placing the shaped croissants on a lined baking sheets. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and allow to rest at room temperature for 1 hour, then place in the refrigerator to rest for 1 hour or up to 12 hours. When you poke the dough with your finger, it will slowly bounce back. That means they are ready to be baked.
Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C).
Whisk the egg wash ingredients together. Remove the croissants from the refrigerator. Brush each lightly with egg wash.
Bake the croissants:
Bake until croissants are golden brown, about 20 minutes.
Remove croissants from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool for a few minutes before serving.