Sunday, November 14, 2010

Scones, Elephant Ears, and Bear Claws

During Thursday's Laminated Doughs class, we made a variety of items: scones, elephant ears, and bear claws. It was a really fun day with lots of new techniques.

Scones have become more popular in America as a breakfast item, but traditionally, they are reserved for tea time snacks in countries like England. We made traditional scones with buttermilk and currants. This process is all done free handed. My scones were slightly too large and some of them baked on a slant. I started calling them "slanted scones" and Chef and a few others agreed that "Slanted Scone" could be a great name for a bakery. Anyway, here's a snapshot of my scones which were finished with a flat icing:

We next made Austrian Elephant Ears. This is done by rolling out a large piece of croissant dough, which is egg washed and covered with a nut mixture combined with cinnamon and sugar. We chose to use pecans for this, giving them a southern flare. Traditional elephant ears would have almonds or walnuts. After the filling is spread over the dough, Gilly and I worked from opposite ends to jelly roll both sides of the dough and meet in the middle. We then flipped the entire piece of dough to cut pieces, which were then proofed. After baking, they were glazed:

We then made bear claws. Again we started with a large piece of dough. We then piped frangipane in a line along the edge and sprinkled almonds over it. We again jelly rolled the dough and then cut the dough after the jelly roll completed a full circle. We cut the dough into 3.5 inch pieces and then made four cuts to give the dough a claw-like appearance. These were dusted with powdered sugar after baking:

Both are a pretty big treat, and both tasted great.

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