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Cornetti: the delicious recipe for making soft, fragrant Italian croissants like the bars

Total time: 4H20
Difficulty: Medium
Serves: 12 people
By Cookist

Cornetti (pronounced kr-neh-tee) is a delicious, sweet recipe for making Italian croissants. People usually enjoy at breakfast or even as a snack together with a cup of coffee or cappuccino. The Italian word cornetto means "little horn" in English and it stands for are soft leavened brioches made with a lemon and vanilla scented dough.

Said cornetto in the singular, it is a delicious and fragrant recipe like those you can find in the so-called Italian bars (café). You can enjoy a cornetto plain or filled with creams and fruit jams.

With a shiny surface, Italian croissants are made with genuine, simple ingredients such as flour, eggs, milk, butter and sugar. Thanks to the quick puff pastry technique, it is possible to save precious time, obtaining not too sweet nor buttery treats.

Italian cornetti are also called 8-ply croissants precisely because they are made up of eight layers of dough overlapped and stuffed with a delicate cream of butter and sugar. In this way you will avoid having to make the classic folds. The cream of butter should be very soft but not liquid, otherwise it will come out of the sheets, ruining the croissants.

Once you have the triangles of brioche dough, you can leave them empty or fill them with jams, custard or a chocolate spread. In any case, Italian croissants will be delicious and irresistible, the perfect treat to start the day in the best possible way.

Cornetti vs. Croissants

Cornetti are the Italian version of the classic French croissants. Cornetti are as soft as a brioche, but less buttery and rich than croissants yet denser and sweeter.

Another difference is that croissants are often flavored with vanilla and the grated peel of lemons or oranges, while typical French ones are not.

Tips for making Italian Croissants

You can flavor the dough with grated orange zest, cinnamon, vanilla, lemon or orange blossom.

Use high-quality ingredients for this recipe.

How to store Cornetti

Italian croissants can be stored at room temperature, in a special food bag, for 2-3 days. Before serving, heat them for a few minutes in the oven.

Can you freeze Cornetti?

You can also freeze baked or raw cornetti before the second leavening. Arrange them on a baking sheet, store them in the freezer and transfer them to plastic bags once solid. Thaw them at room temperature for 2 to 3 hours, then brush an egg yolk on top and bake cornetti as directed.

for the leavening
Flour 0
70 g
70 g
Fresh brewer’s yeast
15 g
for the dough
Manitoba flour
230 g
Flour 0
230 g
Fresh whole milk
180 g
Granulated sugar
100 g
butter, softened
60 g
lemon, zested
Vanilla Extract
1 tsp
Fine salt
8 g
for the butter cream
70 g
Granulated sugar
70 g
for brushing and decorating
egg yolk
Powdered sugar

How to make Cornetti Italian Croissants

Prepare a leaven by mixing the flour with the water in which you have dissolved the brewer’s yeast. Double the volume, then add the remaining flour.

Also combine all the other ingredients: eggs, sugar and milk. Work the dough and, when it takes on consistency, start incorporating the soft butter, a few pieces at a time, the salt and finally the flavorings.

Work the dough until it is smooth and stringed (possibly with the stand mixer), form a ball and let it rise for 2-3 hours, until doubled in volume.

When the dough has doubled in volume, it is ready to be used.

Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces.

Shape each of them into balls and let them rest for 10 minutes.

Partially roll out each ball with a rolling pin on a lightly floured surface. Let rest for another 10 minutes.

Roll out the sheets again until thin and as large as a flat plate.

Spread the butter cream and sugar on each sheet.

Overlap one sheet on top of the other after spreading the cream on the one below.

Place the last sheet that will obviously not be brushed.

Let it rest for 10 minutes, then seal the edges well and roll out the 8 sheets with a rolling pin until they are a few mm thick.

Cut the resulting circle into quarters using a pastry cutter wheel.

Divide each quarter into 3 parts to get 12 triangles.

Make a small cut at the base of each triangle, then roll it tightly until you get a crescent shape.

Place the Italian croissants on a dripping pan, lined with parchment paper, and let rise until doubled in volume, covered with cling film.

When they are swollen, the croissants are ready to be baked.

Brush the cornetti with the egg yolk, beaten with a drop of milk.

Bake the cornetti at 200°C/390°F for about 20 minutes. Take them out of the oven and let them cool.

Sprinkle the Italian croissants with a little powdered sugar.

Serve and enjoy cornetti.

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