Butter Cake | Kouign-Amann | Brittany

Head straight on to the recipe for Butter Cake ♥

Butter Cake is the English translation for kouign-amann which originated in the town of Douarnenez in Finistère, Brittany around 1860. Brittany is a beautiful area of France where there is a big push to preserve both the language and traditions of the area. We have visited once and I look forward to returning there some day.

Desserts formed a large part of our trip to Brittany as I became slightly obsessed with galettes. So much so that I would even venture to eaten savoury ones. While there I did not get to try this kouign-amann. It is made using bread dough with butter folded through it in the same manner as puff pastry. At the very end of the folding, sugar is added to make it a sweet cake. If one were to adhere to the original recipe then the ratio of 40 percent dough, 30 percent butter, and 30 percent sugar would be used. As you can see, mine caught on top and is slightly burnt. That is from using fructose.

Butter Cake
Butter Cake

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5 from 5 votes

Butter Cake

These are traditionally enjoyed with café au lait but I had mine with chocolat chaud
Recipe Category: Baking
All Rights Reserved: Adapted from Paul Hollywood


  • 300 g bread flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 5 g yeast
  • 5 mls fine salt
  • 200 mls water
  • 275 g butter, divided *
  • Oil for greasing
  • 100 g fructose


  • Place the flour into a stand mixer bowl
  • Add the yeast on one side of the bowl
  • Add the salt to the opposite side of the bowl
  • Add the water
  • Melt 25g of the butter and add
  • Using a dough hook, mix on a slow speed for 2 minutes
  • Increase to a medium speed and mix for a further 6 minutes
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a ball
  • Lightly oil the bowl and return the dough to it, seam side down
  • Cover and leave to prove for an hour
  • Prepare two pieces of parchment paper, 20cm square
  • Mark a 14cm square on one
  • Place the butter onto the unmarked parchment paper and cover with the marked parchment paper
  • Bash the butter using a rolling pin and then roll out to fit the 14cm marked square
  • Place the butter into the fridge to chill
  • Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface
  • Gently knock back and then roll into a 20cm square
  • Place the butter onto this with the corners of the butter lining up with the sides of the dough
  • Fold the corners of the dough over the butter, totally enclosing it
  • Roll out to a 45 x 15cm rectangle
  • Mark the length into 15cm sections and fold the bottom section up
  • Fold the top section down and cover with cling film
  • Place into the fridge for 30 minutes
  • Once again roll out to a 45 x 15cm rectangle and repeat the folding process
  • Cover with cling film and place into the fridge for 30 minutes
  • Repeat once more
  • Roll out the dough to a 45 x 15cm rectangle and sprinkle the fructose onto the dough
  • Repeat the folding process and then working as fast as you can, roll out to a 40 x 30cm rectangle
  • Cut into 12 squares
  • Pinch the 4 corners together and place each piece of dough into a well greased muffin tin
  • Cover with a cloth and leave to prove for 30 minutes
  • Preheat the oven to 220° Celsius
  • Place the tin into the oven and bake for a total of 30 minutes
  • Cover with foil after 10 minutes to prevent the tops from burning
  • Remove and place on a wire rack to cool as soon as you can handle the cakes


* you want a solid 250g block plus 25g extra

Click on the links for conversions and notes.

Butter Cake Waiting To Be Enjoyed
Butter Cake Waiting To Be Enjoyed

This month Meredith from the Poco Loco Olsons challenged us to make kouign-amann for the Daring Kitchen.

Butter Cake With Hot Chocolate
Butter Cake With Hot Chocolate

What I blogged April 28:

Lavender and Lime Signature
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34 thoughts on “Butter Cake | Kouign-Amann | Brittany

  1. I make a butter cake without yeast, but I think others call it a marble cake. Yours looks nice.

  2. I love puff pastry and the way the butter looks and tastes folded in. Knowing me, this cake/bread will take several attempts but totally be worth it. I wish I had a piece right now with a cup of tea for breakfast. Maybe I can pop over the Ocean?

  3. Oh man!! I am so addicted to kouign amann! I had them for the 1st time in Europe last summer and I have been wanting to try my hand at making them. Very inspiring!

  4. I am so loving the texture of this – I don’t think I’ve ever had a sweet butter cake like this – I wish you lived closer so I could pop by and sample a slice!

  5. 5 stars
    Wow, that is such a different technique of making a butter cake. I feel I could almost dunk that into a hot chocolate!

  6. Tandy, I’ve been meaning to make kouign-amann since I first heard of it a few years ago, but I haven’t gotten around to it yet, which is pretty puzzling to me since I’m such a breadaholic! Must get on the ball now that you’ve inspired me!

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