I made 3/4 of the recipe as plain (actually they're anything but plain) croissants, and 1/4 as chocolate. It seemed essential to stick with the times to keep the dough very cold, and it was good to prepare this in the winter, since it didn't warm up much when I worked on it at each stage. The dough really seemed durable to me, rather than fragile - really not to hard to work with.
The last phase, where you shape them (an hour or more of work) and then they rise for 3-4 hours seems problematic - how does one have croissants for 9:00 am breakfast? Clearly the workers in those patisseries are chronically sleep deprived :-) I got up at 5:30 a.m to get the last turn in, and we ended up eating them in the late morning and then the chocolate batch in the late afternoon.
I felt the results were fairly authentic (I'm sure with more practice, they would be even better), but I will be on the lookout for how to manage this without it ending in the middle of the day - I'd really like to eat them first thing in the morning.
Here's are the chocolate croissants - one ounce of chocolate per croissant made these quite chocolatey (in a good way).
I did have one mishap, so here's my warning for everyone: don't put them to rise in an overly warm oven! I heated the oven a bit, and then turned it off and left the door open, thinking it would then be good for the formed croissants in their last rise. When I opened the oven after an hour of rising, there was a lake of butter on the cookie sheet and the croissants were looking melted and deflated.
|Sad sack croissants from rising in an overly warm space|
|Sad sack croissants after baking - still edible!|