Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Medialunas y Vigilantes - Argentine Croissants

Aunty Lidia and Aunty Marta - two amazing bakers!
Over the next few weeks I'll be turning to lots of baking recipes! Breads, pastries, pies...oh dear - my mouth is watering in anticipation! Today we start with Medialunas and Vigilantes.

Waking up in the morning and walking down to the local bakery and picking up some freshly made medialunas, just warm from the oven - well - it's just about my idea of heaven for any start of the day! Also taking a bag of medialunas, vigilantes, danishes is part of the norm when in Argentina...to then sit around and eat, chat and drink yerba mate with them is just part and parcel of a normal gathering!!

There are a lot of recipes for medialunas (and vigilantes - which are the same recipe (just straight instead of half moon shape!) but this one is super easy. Medialunas are known as the Argentine croissants, but they are a little different to French croissants - less flaky and more of a sweet bread... this is one to put on the list for yummy baked good straight out of the oven and onto the breakfast table with a milky tea or for when friends come around for a long chat and after dinner desserts!


  • 1/2 kilo of plain flour

  • 1/2 cup milk

  • 2/3 cup of sugar

  • dry yeast

  • 1 cup of butter softened (room temperature - so you can easily mix it into the dough)

  • 1 tablespoon vanilla essence

  • 1/2 cup water

  • 1 x egg
Almibar (syrup):
  • 1 cup of sugar

  • 1 cup of water
- to make place in a pan, dissolve sugar in the water for 15mins on medium heat. Keep stirring the whole time, cook until texture is heavy - don't let it caramelise!

To make pastry:

In a bowl place the flour. Place the egg in the middle of the mixture, add the milk and water and mix with a fork. Add the vanilla essence, sugar and one sachet of dry yeast.

Mix the dough with your hands, kneading the mixture together. Add the butter bit by bit and knead through the dough. The dough will be soft and moist. Leave for 20mins to rest before starting.

Take part of the dough. Don't add flour to your work surface - the butter will ensure that the dough doesn't stick onto the table. Flour will dry the dough.

Roll out the dough into a rectangle (20cm wide and about 1/2cm thick).

Cut triangles diagonally starting from one corner

Take one of the triangles and put the point facing away from you. Take the wide end and start rolling until you get to the end, then take the ends and gently curve inwards to make a croissant shape. If you are making vigilantes leave straight! Place in a baking tray and brush with Almibar. Then cook in a high heat oven (200 degrees) until golden brown.

For traditional vigilantes you can make a filling of custard which you can pipe on top or use dulce de membrillo (quince paste) piped on top.

  • 2 egg yolks

  • 2 heaped tablespoons cornflour

  • 2 cups of milk

  • 2 tablespoons of caster sugar

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence

Whisk the egg yolks and cornflour to a smooth paste with a little of the milk. Place the remaining milk and caster sugar in a separate microwave bowl. Heat milk in the microwave (or over heat on a stove top in a pan) until it boils. Add the cornflour mixture and vanilla essence and whisk until it becomes a thick paste.

You can see the live recipe on the Cocina de Mama YouTube channel. Subscribe at www.youtube.com/cocinademama to get all your weekly recipes.

Cocina, comer y ser feliz!

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