St. Martin’s croissants

Polish Rogale Świętomarcińskie (St. Martin's Croissants)

St. Martin’s croissants – traditional croissants from Poznań in Poland eaten on November 11 during name day celebrations of Saint Marcin’s street. It is a regional product that is eaten throughout Poznań once a year. Even hundreds of tons of this pastry are sold on this day! Why is it so special and how to prepare it? If you have never tried it, you should prepare Martin’s croissants at least once to get to know that taste!

Certified and original St. Martin’s croissants (in Poland called Rogale Świętomarcińskie).
Recipe for St. Martin’s croissants – according to the certificate:
Dough: yeast dough + margarine for rolling
Filling: white poppy seeds, confectionery crumbs, sugar, margarine, nuts, raisins, fruit in syrup or candied, egg mass, almond flavor
Finish: pomade, nuts.
There is more and more controversy surrounding Marciński’s croissants. Their history dates back to the 19th century. So where does the margarine, egg mass or artificial flavors come from in the recipe?
Instead of buying croissants with a certificate, it is better to buy croissants baked with butter or bake them yourself. More and more often in confectioneries you can find croissants that are smaller than they should be…

How much does a St. Martin’s croissant weigh?
According to the certificate, 1 croissant should weigh from 200 g to 250 g. In accordance with the European Union Commission’s Executive Order No. 597/2013 of June 19, 2013, the lower weight limit of the croissant has been reduced, which is now 150 g, so the weight of the croissant can be between 150 g and 250 g. The reduction in the weight of the croissant was justified by “changes in consumers’ eating habits.”

What nuts should be used for St. Martin’s croissants?
Traditionally, croissants are served with almonds and walnuts, but unfortunately bakeries are increasingly adding cheaper peanuts and the certificate does not specify which nuts should be used.

Do not use ready-made white poppy seed mass because it contains only about 20% poppy seeds, the rest is water, semolina and flour.
White poppy seeds are difficult to find in stores, so it is best to order them in advance online.

Preparing St. Martin’s croissants is quite time-consuming, so it is best to divide the preparation of the croissants into 3 days. On the first day, prepare the dough and put it in the fridge overnight. On the second day, prepare the filling and start rolling and folding the dough. On the third day, roll and bake the croissants.

When and where to eat St. Martin’s croissants?
St. Martin’s croissants are traditionally eaten on November 11 in Poznań in connection with the name day celebration of św. Marcin Street.

What’s in a St. Martin’s croissant?
Traditionally, the croissant filling consists of white poppy seeds, almonds, walnuts and dried fruit such as raisins. Almond flavor is often added, which gives the croissants their marzipan flavor. If you want to add flavor to your croissants, choose the natural one, e.g. in the form of extract or sugar.

How to roll Martin’s croissants?
Cut long triangles from the dough. Add the filling in a line along the height of the triangle. Leave about 4 cm from the base and about 15 cm from the top of the triangle without filling. Fold the base of the triangle to cover the filling. Make a cut in the middle, leaving about 1 cm of dough. Widen the incision to form a triangle. Then fold to the top of the triangle and roll into a horseshoe shape. Below you will find an instructional video on how to wrap croissants.

Can St. Martin’s croissants be frozen?
Of course! Pack each croissant in a separate ziplock bag or place it in a plastic container to prevent it from crumpling in the freezer. Remember to defrost the croissants slowly, it is best to take it out of the freezer the day before so that it can defrost overnight.

Saint Martin’s croissants are perfect for people on a vegetarian, flexitarian and pescatarian diet. They contain gluten, eggs and nuts.

The proportions given below make approximately 10 croissants weighing approximately 250-300 g.
Read the step-by-step recipe on how to prepare St. Martin’s croissants and watch the video below the recipe.
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Polish St. Martin’s croissants

Traditional Poznań's croissants (Polish Rogale Świętomarcińskie). Original recipe. Prepared with white poppy seeds, real butter and eggs. The perfect half puff pastry. Perfect stuffing with poppy seeds, dried fruits and nuts. Step-by-step recipe with instructional video.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 50 minutes
Baking 35 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 25 minutes
Course Desserts
Cuisine Polish
Servings 10 croissants
Calories 1262 kcal

Polish Rogale Świętomarcińskie Recipe

Ingredients
 
 

Leaven

  • 25 g fresh yeast (or 7 g dry yeast)
  • 250 ml milk (1 cup)
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1 tbsp sugar

Dough

  • leaven
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 500 g flour (3 cups)
  • 50 g sugar
  • 50 g unsalted butter (soft)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 300 g unsalted butter (for the dough filling)

Filling

  • 300 g white poppy seeds
  • 750 ml milk (for cooking poppy seeds)
  • 150 g almonds (peeled)
  • 50 g powdered sugar
  • 1 shot rum
  • 12 g almond flavoured sugar or natural almond extract (may be omitted)
  • 180 g lady fingers
  • 100 g walnuts
  • 1 cup honey
  • 50 g unsalted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 100 g raisins (may be omitted)
  • 100 g dried apricots (may be omitted)
  • 70 g candied orange peel (may be omitted)

Additionaly (to grease the croissants)

  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp milk

Icing and toppings

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tbsp hot water
  • 1 handful walnuts
  • 1 handful flaked almonds (optional)
  • 30 g candied orange peel (optional)

Instructions
 

Leaven

  • Crumble the yeast into a bowl, sprinkle with sugar and flour, pour warm milk (approx. 40 °C (104 °F)). Mix all ingredients, cover with a cloth and leave to rise for 15 minutes.
    Tip no. 1: take the fresh yeast out of the fridge in advance so that it reaches room temperature, this will make it grow better.
    Tip no. 2: if you use dry yeast, you do not have to wait for the mixture to rise, you can immediately add the rest of the dough ingredients.
    25 g fresh yeast, 250 ml milk, 1 tbsp flour, 1 tbsp sugar

Dough

  • Sift the flour into the mixture, add egg yolks, sugar, soft butter, salt and mix all the ingredients. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes. Then cover the bowl with the dough with cling film and put it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes (you can also leave the dough overnight and continue preparing the croissants the next day).
    leaven, 3 egg yolks, 500 g flour, 50 g unsalted butter, 1 tsp salt, 50 g sugar
  • Beat 300 g of soft butter with a mixer (this will increase its volume). Then transfer the whipped butter onto baking paper. Cover with another sheet of paper and roll out (through the paper). Roll out the butter to obtain a rectangle with sides of approx. 20 x 25 cm and a thickness of approx. 1 cm. Then put the butter and the paper in the fridge to harden.
    300 g unsalted butter
  • Take the risen dough out of the fridge and place it on a floured countertop. Roll out the dough to form a rectangle ⅓ longer than the butter rectangle (approx. 38 x 20 cm). Place a rectangle of cold butter on the dough. Place the butter on the edge of the dough so that ⅓ of the dough remains butterless. Fold the dough into thirds. Cover the butter with a free piece of dough. Then cover the already wrapped piece of dough with the remaining piece of dough with butter (see how to do it in the video below). Gently roll out the dough, fold it into thirds again, wrap it in cling film and put it in the fridge for about 1 hour. After one hour, take the dough out of the fridge, unwrap it from the foil, roll it out, fold it again into thirds, wrap it in foil and put it in the fridge for another hour. Repeat folding and cooling two more times before adding the filling.

Filling

  • Rinse the poppy seeds under cold running water. A fine sieve lined with gauze will be best for this. Put the rinsed poppy seeds into a pot with hot milk. Cook the poppy seeds for about 50 minutes. Then cover the pot with a lid so that the poppy seeds absorb the rest of the milk. Set aside the covered pot with poppy seeds to cool.
    300 g white poppy seeds, 750 ml milk
  • Pour boiling water over the raisins and apricots and set aside for 5 minutes. Then pour out the water. This will make the fruit swell.
    100 g raisins, 100 g dried apricots
  • When the poppy seeds have cooled down and the almonds are peeled, you can start grinding the stuffing. You will need a meat grinder for this. Grind cooked poppy seeds, peeled almonds and walnuts twice. Grind the poppy seeds and nuts again, this time into the grinder, also adding previously soaked apricots, raisins, orange peel and biscuits.
    180 g lady fingers, 100 g walnuts, 70 g candied orange peel, 150 g almonds
  • Place the ground poppy seeds and dried fruits into the mixer bowl. Add eggs, rum, honey, powdered sugar, butter, almond sugar and mix thoroughly. Place the prepared stuffing in a piping bag or a string bag and put it in the fridge overnight.
    50 g powdered sugar, 1 shot rum, 12 g almond flavoured sugar or natural almond extract, 1 cup honey, 50 g unsalted butter, 3 eggs

Rolling up the croissants

  • The next day, when the filling and dough have cooled, take the dough out of the fridge, place it on a floured surface and roll it out into a large rectangle. Cut isosceles triangles from the rectangle with a base length of approx. 20 cm. Place the cooled stuffing on the triangles along the height of the triangle. Leave about 4 cm of space from the base, then add a thick layer of stuffing. Leave approximately 10 – 15 cm of space from the top of the triangle. Then put the dough from the base of the triangle onto the filling, press lightly, cut in the middle, leaving about 1 cm of dough so as not to cut the dough all the way. Unfold the dough so that the cut forms a triangle. Then roll the dough into a log. Roll the roll into a croissant and place it on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Wrap all croissants like this. Watch the video on how to roll croissants below.
  • Once you have wrapped all the croissants, cover them with a cloth and leave to rise for about 1 hour.
  • Brush the risen croissants with egg mixed with a little bit of milk. Place the buttered croissants in an oven preheated to 180°C (conventional heating356 °F) and bake for about 35 minutes. Leave the baked croissants to cool.
    1 egg, 2 tbsp milk

Icing

  • You can glaze the cooled croissants. To prepare the icing, mix powdered sugar with a few tablespoons of boiling water. Pour the icing over the croissants. Then sprinkle with a mixture of chopped walnuts, almond flakes and candied orange peel.
    1 cup powdered sugar, 3 tbsp hot water, 1 handful walnuts, 1 handful flaked almonds, 30 g candied orange peel

Video

Watch how to make traditional rogale marcińskie step by step video.
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Notes

Almonds for stuffing must be peeled. You can buy peeled blanched almonds or peel them yourself. For this you need to pour boiling water over the almonds. The almonds need to be soaked in hot water for a few minutes to soften the skin.
After a few minutes, pour out the hot water, pour cold water over the almonds (so as not to burn yourself) and start squeezing the almonds from the skin. If the almonds do not peel easily, pour boiling water over them again, wait a few minutes, rinse with cold water and peel.

Nutrition

Serving: 100gCalories: 421kcal (21%)Carbohydrates: 46g (15%)Protein: 9g (17%)Fat: 24g (36%)Saturated Fat: 9g (56%)Trans Fat: 0gCholesterol: 88mg (29%)Sodium: 120mg (5%)Potassium: 297mg (8%)Fiber: 4g (17%)Sugar: 22g (25%)Vitamin A: 602IU (12%)Vitamin C: 0mgVitamin D: 1µg (4%)Vitamin E: 2mg (13%)Vitamin K: 1µg (1%)Calcium: 222mg (22%)Iron: 3mg (15%)Manganese: 1mg (50%)Magnesium: 69mg (17%)Zinc: 2mg (11%)Folic Acid: 28µg

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet

Have you made this recipe?Show it off and add a photo in the comments!

Where did St. Martin‘s croissants come from?
Legend has it that Saint Martin was a Roman soldier. One day he saw a cold beggar at the city gate. He felt sorry for him, so he cut off half of his soldier’s coat with his sword – his only possession – and gave it to the stranger.
This story was repeated every year by the parish priest in the Saint Martin’s church in Poznań before the parish indulgence.

In 1891, the baker Walenty heard it and, inspired by the story, he decided to do something just as good. However, he had no idea what he could do, so he started praying to Saint Martin. Suddenly he heard the sound of horses’ hooves outside the window. He looked beyond the threshold and saw a knight.

The rider didn’t say a word, he just looked at Valentine, smiled and rode away on his horse. Then the baker saw a horseshoe lying in the snow. Then he had an idea. Throughout the night he baked cookies filled with poppy seeds and dried fruit, shaped like a horse’s shoe.

The next morning, after the indulgence mass, he distributed all the cookies to the poor. Everyone liked Walenty’s idea so much that he baked croissants every year. After his death, this tradition was taken over by other bakers.

This is the legend about the creation of Saint Martin’s croissants. In fact, the idea of Marcin’s croissants was suggested to his boss in 1891 by one of the Poznań bakers – Józef Melzer. The croissants were distributed to the poor after the indulgence mass on November 11.

Throughout the country, November 11 is associated with the celebration of Poland regaining independence. Only in Poznań, these celebrations are much more joyful, because they are combined with the name day of St. Martin’s Street.

After the Holy Mass, a colorful procession sets off from the church to the imperial castle, where the mayor of Poznań hands over the keys to the city to Saint Martin. Various shows, games and performances take place throughout the day for Poznań residents and passing guests.

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