Snack Attack: Kouign-Amann at Flour Bakery & Café
Welcome to our weekly series Snack Attack, where we highlight a sweet treat or savory start you should save room for.
When Joanne Chang calls something “the perfect pastry,” and then makes a stockpile of it, that’s your cue to get in line at Flour Bakery & Café. The James Beard Award-winning Outstanding Baker has used that designation for kouign-amann, a buttery round with a crispy exterior surrounding layers of soft, flaky pastry dough, and today is the treat’s official national day.
“You have all the great flavors of a yeasted croissant with real, great butter, and then you have the sugar that caramelizes as it bakes,” Chang previously told Boston.
The pastry, which hails from Brittany, France, was developed in the 1860s, and its name translates to “butter cake.” The Breton tradition calls for a ratio of 40 percent dough, 30 percent butter, and 30 percent sugar. Folding in the ingredients to make perfect, puffy layers can be a time-consuming process, but investing in a new piece of equipment allowed Chang to give the kouign-amann permanent placement on Flour’s menu in 2012.
Check out the kneading process:
In recent years, the unique treat has also risen at local bakeries and restaurants including Puritan & Co., Ames Street Deli, and Loyal Nine. It’s available daily at Flour, but for National Kouign-Amann Day, Chang and her staff stocked the pastry cases.
It’s just about time for your mid-afternoon snack.
Flour Bakery + Café, 12 Farnsworth St., Boston, 617-338-4333, and other locations, flourbakery.com.