The last 2 weeks of class have been a butter and flour covered blur. Focaccia, crackers and pizza, then straight into brioche, croissant and puff pastry. Pro Baking 1 isn't winding down so much as careening toward the end at break-neck speed.
Today we made blocks out of butter to fold into croissant and puff pastry dough, and turned last week's brioche down into gorgeous pain au raisin. I was amazed at how well mine turned out considering I had to really book it to get the dough done last week before the end of class.
This is the part of the post where I usually give out lots of helpful tips but to be frank I'm still processing it all. I do know the basis for the success of these doughs lies even distribution of leaves of butter throughout. There is a lot of rolling and turning the dough to get that flakiness one expects in a croissant so basically, if you're not wearing flecks of pain au chocolate all over you when you eat one, you wasting calories on a something that is not the real deal. Just say no to fake pastry!
I figure, if you're going to have a cinnamon roll, really have one. And don't skimp on the milk either.