Once upon a time, there was a New York baker who decided he wanted to combine two humble baked goods: the doughnut and the croissant. French chef Dominique Ansel, operating out of a storefront in SoHo, spent two months finding the perfect fusion of the two breakfast bakery treats and introduced the "cronut" on May 10.
And the people went nuts.
If you've been tuned out of this story so far, here's the deal: People wait hours to get their hands on one of the few hundred cronuts Ansel makes every day. Around the globe, chefs and restaurateurs are attempting to create their own croissant-doughnut hybrids. And yes, there's a resale market for the baked good in and around the New York City region.
Still can't visualize such a magical-sounding pastry? Here's the description from Ansel's website:
"Chef Dominique Ansel's creation is not to be mistaken as simply croissant dough that has been fried. Made with a laminated dough similar to a croissant (but not exactly), the Cronut is first proofed and then fried in grapeseed oil at a specific temperature. Once cooked, each cronut is flavored in three ways: 1. rolled in sugar; 2. filled with cream; and 3. topped with glaze. Cronuts are made fresh daily, and completely in done in house. [sic] The entire process takes up to 3 days."
And while that's awesome and all, Valley residents probably can't get to New York right now. But if you have other trips planned, you may be able to find a "faux-nut" (that would be a fake cronut) at your destination.
For example, at Wildflour Cafe + Bakery Fort Bonifacio in Manila, Philippines, they've had fake cronuts since June 2. Circle City Sweets in Indianapolis, Indiana, announced on Facebook that they would be selling "doissants" for $2 a pop. And according to L.A. Magazine, Cooks County's chef Roxana Jullapat is working on a recipe, meaning a version of the cronut may be within road-trip distance for Phoenicians sometime soon.
Ambitious home bakers who ain't got time for that may be interested in the recipe Pillsbury recently released for Salted Caramel Crescent Doughnuts. (That's right; even the Doughboy wants in on the cronut action.) Made from Pillsbury Crescent rolls, the photos appear appetizing and similar to a cronut, though we can't tell you how they compare to the real thing.
Authentic cronuts from Ansel's bakery will cost you $5 each, and you can only purchase two at a time. (That is, unless you order 50 cronuts or more, months in advance, which apparently people are actually doing.) But if you're super lazy and in NYC you could have someone from Craigslist wait in line and deliver them to you directly, though each one will cost you $20 if you live in Manhattan -- $40 for you Brooklynites.
And if all this cronut craze has you super-depressed that you can't get your hands on one, take comfort in the fact that you're probably saving yourself from hundreds of calories. Huffington Post asked Ansel how many calories were in the pastry, but he said he didn't know.
He did confirm the cronut contains tons of butter, cream, and sugar, all of which would probably just go straight to our thighs anyway.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.