Of all the breakfast pastries in all the world, I would have to say almond croissants are my absolute favorite. True story!
The soft buttery folds of dough, the flaky crust that shatters with each bite, the nutty sweetness from the gooey decadent filling, the taste and fragrance of almond – I love everything about almond croissants. And a good almond croissant is so hard to find, why is that? So often the are either dry, chewy, too soft or too sweet. When they are bad they are really bad. But when they are done right there is nothing that can compare to the perfect almond croissant. It is probably all the butter that makes them oh so good and I’m okay with that.
Having recently learned how to make these gems from scratch and having baked them almost daily for a month I am an even bigger fan girl of almond croissants. Sure it takes an incredible amount of work. Sure my arms were bruised from rolling out the dough and then folding the dough and then rolling it again. But knowing the delicate and intricate process of making croissants made me appreciate them even more. While it is nice to have your favorite cafe to pick up a morning croissant from, it can be very satisfying to make them for yourself. So here is your chance. A complicated and maybe confusing recipe below, go ahead and give it a try. You will feel rewarded when you pull out those golden brown croissants from the oven and sit down with a cup of coffee and enjoy one hot and fresh from the oven!
While I have my go-to coffee and sweets shop in my neighborhood (The Village Bakery), there is another local gem that tugs at my heartstrings – Proof Bakery. Proof Bakery is a small and quaint coffee shop with a dangerously delicious selection of pastries. Located on a stretch of Glendale Blvd. in Atwater Village that is home to many of my favorite things (Vietnamese food, Sweets for the Soul and zumba class) it is hard not to frequent Proof.
If you are looking for a nice place to leisurely enjoy a cup of coffee and a sweet treat this is the place to go. But be warned, the coffee is good, the sweets even better!
They offer a variety of croissants that are baked fresh daily. My favorite of these is the decadent almond croissant ($4). It is nutty, buttery and sweet. The exterior is super flaky while the interior has just the right of marzipan tucked between the folds of soft dough. It appeals to everything I love – sweetness, dough and butter!
I am not a big chocolate fan, but the flourless chocolate cake ($4.50) was calling my name. It was dense, gooey and sprinkled with cocoa nibs that provided a nice crunch. This cake was semi-sweet with slightly bitter notes from the dark chocolate base.
The pavlova with fresh berries and chantilly cream ($5.50) is a whimsical dessert. The berries and cream collapse into the crisp meringue base. The contrasts of textures are pleasing. It is a delicate and light dessert that provides a nice compliment to a mid-day espresso.
The pastries at Proof Bakery are a little pricey, but well worth the splurge for the small batch, high quality confection you receive.
3156 Glendale Blvd.
Atwater Village, CA