A few days ago I was scrolling through TikTok and I saw a video of someone with a Portuguese croissant….IT LOOKED SO GOOD.
This was the first time I’ve ever seen a Portuguese croissant, I’ve only ever had and seen French ones. So I felt like I needed to try it immediately.
These were amazing, I’ve made them 3 times in the past week, I love them!
What is a Portuguese Croissant?
Portuguese croissants look pretty much the same as French croissants, but the inside of them and the taste is totally different.
The main characteristic of a French croissant is the flakiness….right?
You could say it’s the butter-iness, or the crispiness, but ultimately I feel like it’s not a French croissant unless it’s flaky.
This flakiness comes from the layers that are created when making the dough. However, Portuguese croissants don’t have these layers, they’re not flaky at all.
Portuguese croissants are more bready, they’re essentially brioche but rolled into croissant shapes.
Because of this, first of all they’re so much easier to make, but secondly the texture and taste of them is so different. Just imagine a slice of brioche, but it’s warm, buttery, and in a more fun shape.
Side note, I would like to say, I did research on this….and by research I mean I googled ‘Portuguese croissants’.
I didn’t find a lot of information about these or recipes. I honestly learnt more about these from the comment section in the TikTok I saw.
So I’m not saying my recipe is the most authentic, I don’t know if it truly is. But this is just my attempt at making Portuguese croissant. I hope I did them justice!
Ingredients for the Portuguese Croissants
Like I mentioned, the croissants are made with a brioche dough, so the ingredients are just the basic ingredients you would use for most bread doughs.
Here is what you’re going to need to make these Portuguese croissants:
- Plain flour – also known as all-purpose flour.
- Salt – for flavour.
- Sugar – brioche is a sweetened dough, so we need some sugar. I used granulated, caster sugar works too.
- Instant yeast – I always instant yeast for any doughs. It’s just easier because you can add straight into your bowl with the other ingredients. If you are using active yeast, make sure to mix it with the warm milk first, leave it for 10 minutes, then add it into your bowl.
- 3 eggs + 2 egg yolks – I like to add extra egg yolks, it just gives the bread extra richness. Also use room temperature eggs.
- Whole milk – warm this in your microwave for 30 seconds before adding it into your dough. You don’t want to add it whiles it’s cold.
- Unsalted butter – the most important ingredient, you can’t have brioche without butter. Make sure this is softened., it won’t mix into your dough if it’s cold.
Kneading the dough
One of the most important steps in making these is kneading the dough.
With most bread doughs, if you don’t knead them for long enough, the final product will be a little flat and dense.
Honestly it will still taste good so don’t stress about it, but to get the croissants the way we want, we need to knead the dough for a while.
The first time the dough is kneaded is after all the ingredients have been incorporated, at this point knead it for 10 minutes.
Then after the butter is added, knead for an additional 15-20 minutes. After this kneading process, the dough should be smooth and a little shiny!
If you have a mixer, I recommend using it. You can also do it by hand though but I fear your arms might be in pain afterwards. But then also if you are in pain whiles making these, they might taste more rewarding at the end so maybe it is a good idea to knead the dough by hand.
Making the croissant shapes
I wanted to give like a step-by-step on how to make the croissant shapes, just in case anyone needed it.
I’m also including pictures because sometimes when I’m reading recipes I get very confused when there’s no pictures involved. So if you are a visual learner like me, the picture you are going to see are for you!
Step 1 – Roll the dough out
After your dough has risen, roll the dough out into a large rectangle. I rolled mine out into a 45×32 cm rectangle. You don’t need your rectangle to be exactly this size, just as long as the dough is around 0.5 cm thick then you’re good.
Step 2 – Cut out triangles
You want to cut around 8 triangles out of the dough. I’m saying ‘around’ because you might get maybe 1 more or 1 less depending on how big you rolled your rectangle out too, but if you rolled it out to 45×32 cm, you will get 8.
Step 3 – Cut slits at the bottom of the triangles
You want to cut a small slit at the bottom of the triangles.
Step 4 – Start rolling the triangles
From the base, where you made the slit, start rolling the triangles up into a croissant shape. Try to keep this tight as you roll it. If there are gaps, there will be gaps inside the croissants after they have baked. Which is not a big deal, but just for aesthetic purposes keep the roll tight.
Step 5 – Leave the croissants to rise
After they have all been rolled up, add them onto baking paper lined trays and leave them to rise for 1 hour – 1 hour 30 minutes.
Make sure not to put them all on 1 tray. They will be much bigger after they have risen and baked, so you want to leave gaps between them. If not, they will just all join together as they bake!
Making the dough ahead of time
When making these, there are two times when you need to leave the dough to rise, because of this the whole process does take a while.
It is still a lot quicker than making French croissants, but the process will take most of your day.
If you wanted to do this over 2 days instead, there are 2 ways to do this:
- After the dough has been kneaded, instead of leaving it in a warm place to rise straight away, you can leave it in your fridge overnight. Then the next day, let it rise at in a warm place.
- Or instead, you could get to the point where you have made the croissant shapes and put them onto a tray. Then leave these in the fridge overnight. The next day leave them to rise in a warm place and then bake.
I know these 2 methods are technically making the process longer, but sometimes I feel like it’s easier to do it over to days!
Looking for other recipes? Here are some others I posted recently:
Makes: 8 croissants
600g plain flour
1 teaspoon salt
80g granulated sugar
12g instant yeast
2 egg yolks
150ml whole milk, warm
250g unsalted butter, softened
Plus an extra egg for an egg wash
- Making the dough:
- In a large bowl add the flour, salt, sugar, yeast, 3 eggs, 2 egg yolks and the milk. Mix this until a dough forms and then knead it for 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes, add about a tablespoon of the butter, mix until incorporated then add more butter. Keep repeating until all the butter has been added.
- Once all the butter has been added, knead the dough for 15-20 minutes, until it is smooth and shiny.
- The 1st rise:
- Place this dough into a large, slightly oiled bowl. Cover and leave to rise in a warm place until it has doubled in size, this should take 1-2 hours.
- Forming the croissants:
- Once the dough has risen, place it onto a lightly floured surface and roll it out into a large rectangle. I like to roll it into a 45x32 cm rectangle, it doesn't need to be exactly this size, you just want it to be around 0.5 cm thick.
- Cut 8 triangles out of this then get one of the triangles, cut a small slit at the bottom of it, then roll it up into a croissant shape (if you need to visualise any of this, I've included pictures above).
- Repeat this with all the croissants and then place them onto baking paper lined trays. Make sure to leave gaps between the croissants, they will be a lot bigger after they've baked. I recommend putting them on 2 baking trays.
- The 2nd rise:
- Lightly cover these and then leave them to rise, in a warm place again, for about 1 hour - 1 hour 30 minutes. They're ready to be baked when they have almost doubled in size. If you gently touch them they should feel a lot softer than they did before.
- Baking the croissants:
- About 20 minutes before your croissants are ready to be baked, pre-heat your oven 180c/350f.
- Once the croissants have risen, whisk your extra egg and gently brush this over them.
- Bake them for around 20-22 minutes, or until they are golden brown on top.
- After baking, whiles they were still hot, I like to brush them with some melted butter. This is optional, it just makes them look shinier.
- Let them cool down for a bit and then you can enjoy!