Croissants are one of the most delicious and difficult breads to make. Searching for a perfectly made croissant can bring a long line of disappointments, especially in Denver where high altitude is a big factor in baking.
The multilayer dough shares no real resemblance to any other type of bread dough. Success is achieved by creating a dough and a filling, a big block of softened butter, rolling and folding them together multiple times until no distinction between the two exists. It is the perfect marriage of bread and butter and the outcome is hundreds of pockets where air will sit after water evaporates in the oven.
This is the heart and soul of this flaky bread and no other dough or technique could accomplish the same result. Many bakeries use brioche dough, a buttery dough, as a substitution for the laborious layer dough with poor results.
The outcome is not a croissant, but rather a rolled multi-doughy creature, over cooked on the outside and soggy inside.
Another big issue is the substitution of butter for the less expensive margarine. In this case, not only texture is compromised, but the after taste margarine leaves in the mouth and the feeling of greasiness on the roof of the palate is a huge turn-off and a far imitation of the French lightness and delicately sweet butter flavor.
For a great croissant experience in Denver make sure to stop by Trompeau Bakery, where you will not only find great flaky goodness, but also a great assortment of french baked goods such as the traditional baguette, the sweet crunchy palmiers and more.