Described as the ‘perfect breakfast pastry’, the cronut, a creation of half donut and half croissant, has literally taken foodies in New York by storm. Created by baker and chef Dominique Ansel, the cronut is made from thin layers of flaky croissant dough that are then deep fried, rolled in rose sugar, and filled with a light Tahitian vanilla cream. The cronuts are then finished off with a thin rose-flavored glaze thinly coats the top layer, and garnished with crystallized rose petals.
Ansel quietly put the cronut on his pastry menu last week, and started off with a small batch of 50. They were such a success, that three days later, when 200 had sold out by 9.30am, Ansel’s staff were ‘flipped the finger’ by a disappointed customer who had missed out.
“One woman legitimately cried,” chef Dominique Ansel said on Twitter. “We felt so bad, we looked everywhere to find her the last remaining Cronut.” None the less, “it is not OK to flip off our baristas because we are out of Cronuts,” he warned.
Ansel spoke to the MailOnline and said: “A lot of people ask me why we don’t just do more? I’m a big fan of quality over quantity. . . It takes a lot to ensure all our other pastries are up to par with standards as well.”
So are these delicious cronuts made from standard croissant pastry? Oh no, there is much more to the cronut than that, Ansel says: “A cronut is not as simple as frying up some croissant dough. We actually make a special laminated dough that is sheeted and folded different than a croissant.”
And it took him around ten recipes and numerous attempts at baking before he decided on the perfect cronut. Ansel discovered ‘the trick’ to sheeting and now all the cronuts are fried in grape-seed oil at one specific, and secret, temperature.
Ansel opened his New York bakery in Soho in 2011, and due to the overwhelming success of the cronut has now filed a trademark for the name ‘just for our protection,’ he said. The dough for the cronuts is made freshly each morning: “That’s why the batches are limited. Hopefully people will bear with us as we try to ramp up production,” the chef explained.
The cronut costs a pretty whopping $5 (£3.30) each, but that doesn’t seem to put off customers at the Dominique Ansel bakery, where you can find long queues beginning to form soon after 6am. Ansel has had to employ a six-Cronut limit, but the bakery still sells out of its 200 daily run within minutes of opening at 8am.
Lovers of the cronut will be pleased to learn that Ansel has been experimenting with different flavours, and the May special cronut of Rose Tahitian Vanilla will be replaced in June by a new flavor: Lemon Maple. And there will be a new flavor every month after that.
One New Yorker described the Cronut as “the most perfectly light little creation, it melts in your mouth and is sugary, but the croissant bit is slightly savoury and has a little cream in it,” she said. “I just want to eat 20 cronuts afterwards”.
At present there are no plans to bring the Cronut over to the UK, but there is a website dedicated to the new sweet pastry – cronut.org.
Dominique Ansel, 189 Spring Street, New York, NY 10012