Authentic Kouign Amann

Authentic Kouign Amann

I was able to make my favorite kouign amann finally after a lot of trial and error! My instructions may be rather long-winded, but you can use croissant dough, or just use your favorite butter roll recipe and fold 1/4 of its weight in butter into it.

Ingredients: six 10 cm diameter cakes or rolls

Butter roll dough
about 270 g
Salted butter
about 75 g
Granulated sugar for topping
12 g x 6 cakes' worth
Butter for topping
8 g x 6 cakes' worth


1. Deflate the butter roll dough after its 1st rising is done. Put the dough in a plastic bag, and rest it for an hour in the refrigerator.
2. Roll the salted butter into a 15 cm square flat piece, and chill it in the refrigerator.
3. Roll the rested bread dough from Step 1 out, and wrap it around the chilled butter from Step 2. Pinch the seams tightly closed.
4. Roll this out while dusting it with flour, and then fold into thirds. Wrap in plastic and chill it in the freezer (not the refrigerator) for 5 minutes. Repeat 2 more times.
5. While the dough is chilling, prepare the molds. Cut foil into about 22 cm square pieces and stack them. Place a 10 cm diameter circular mold (or a deep dish) on top, and wrap the foil around it, folding any bits that stick out inside. The molds are done.
6. Brush the molds thinly with oil (if you forget this the cakes will stick and won't come out!!). Cut the topping butter into small pieces, and put the butter pieces and the granulated sugar into the foil molds.
7. Roll the well chilled dough out thinly, and divide into 6 pieces lengthwise. (You'll end up with 6 thin ropes.)
8. Twist each rope with both hands, and coil into the oiled foil molds in a spiral shape.
9. Mist the rolls lightly with a water sprayer. Leave in a warm place for about an hour to rise. In the wintertime leave them in a heated room. I don't recommend using the bread proofing setting of an oven since the temperature is too high and the butter will melt out.
10. Preheat the oven to 200°C. When the dough has finished rising, sprinkle them with granulated sugar (not included in the ingredient list).
11. Bake the rolls once the oven has reached temperature for 22 to 23 minutes. If the tops have become dark brown, the bottoms should be caramelized, too.
12. Take the rolls out immediately, and cool them upside down. They'll be piping hot, so be sure to protect your hands with oven gloves or something. Let them cool down completely so that the caramelized bits can become crunchy before eating. The main photo shows them after they've cooled down, with the caramelized tops facing up.

Story Behind this Recipe

Now that the kouign amann boom has ended in Japan, you don't see them much anymore. Even if you do, they often contain apples or are maple flavored... and they're expensive too! I just wanted to eat plain kouign amann to my heart's content, so after a a lot of trial and error, I succeeded in making my own!
I referred to Cookpad user Holly's galettes bretonnes for hints.
Now I'm able to make kouign amann whenever I feel like it.