Just wondering out loud.

rat

562
21
Joined Mar 2, 2006
I have been making croissant amoung other things at my new job and was wondering about the butter part of the recipe. I am using their recipe which is very good, sourdough base, fermented sponge etc.
The butter part calls for the addition of a portion of flour. I have seen this before but never have had to use a reecipe that calls for this. What is the purpose of the flour? I should know this after 22 years in the business but I see no real need for it.
Anyone??
 

chefpeon

Kitchen Dork
730
160
Joined Jun 15, 2006
I was told by my pastry instructor that the addition of flour to the butter "soaks up" what moisture is in the butter, henceforth making a flakier pastry.
 
928
13
Joined Mar 16, 2005
I recall reading that the purpose of adding flour to the butter was to help prevent the butter from leaking as much from the croissant as it baked by trapping some of the oil and water in the starch as it baked... the flaky theory sounds slightly dubious to me since the croissant layers are attributed mostly to the steam that is generated by the layers of melting butter and by trapping that water with starch or by replacing the butter with a no-water fat substitute (say lard or shortening) will still give the pastry distinct layers, but without the rise or the fluffiness on the inside.
 
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