You Can Make A Cronut | The Jewish Week | Food & Wine

You Can Make A Cronut

Facebook icon
Twitter icon
Digg icon
e-mail icon
You Can Make A Cronut

Yes, you can make cronuts at home. Amy Spiro

Chanukah is the perfect excuse to eat these decadent treats.

I try to eat healthy most of the year, really I do. Sure there's some late night snacking, and an occasional indulgence here and there, but for the most part I stick to balanced meals, full of veggies and whole grains. But, well, once a year, when Chanukah rolls around, I can't help but feel it's an excuse to indulge. Certainly deep frying anything is a bit sinful, but how to make it go over the edge? Enter the cronut. 

Unless you've been living under a rock the size of Manhattan lately, you've heard of the cronut. Conceived by pastry chef Dominique Ansel at his eponymous bakery last year, it is a croissant-doughnut hybrid that has inspired legions of devotees and dozens of copycats. Yes, he took the flaky, butter-laden croissant - and deep fried it. 

Is it difficult to make at home? It's not simple, and it's a project that is best done over more than one day. A quick shortcut could certainly be to cut puff pastry sheets into rounds and deep fry them - but you won't get the same result. The labor-intensive part of the recipe is not the frying, but the making of the dough; a croissant is a laminated dough, which means it's layered and folded around a sheet of butter, a process that takes time to complete. 

So if you're looking for an extravagant treat that will have your guests suitably impressed, and you have the time to kill, make your own cronuts! Like all fried items, however, they're best when completely fresh, and ideal only the first day you make them. So make sure you gather a crowd for tasting. 

Amy Spiro is a journalist and writer based in Jerusalem. She is a graduate of the Jerusalem Culinary Institute's baking and pastry track, a regular writer for The Jerusalem Post and blogs at bakingandmistaking.com. She also holds a BA in Journalism and Politics from NYU.

Servings & Times
Yield:
  • Makes about 2 dozen cronuts
Active Time:
  • 2 hrs
Total Time:
  • Over Night
Ingredients

Dough:

3/4 cup milk or soy milk

1 tablespoon yeast

1/3 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 1/4 cups flour

1 teaspoon salt

For folding:

3/4 cup butter or margarine

1/4 cup flour

Glaze (optional):

1 cup powdered sugar

2 to 3 tablespoons milk or soy milk

Steps
  1. Warm the milk until just above room temperature. Mix with the yeast and let stand for 5 minutes; the mixture should be bubbly. Add in the sugar, eggs and vanilla and whisk until well combined. Add in a cup of the flour and the salt, and stir to combine, then continue to add the remaining flour, kneading until smooth (you may need slightly more flour). Form the dough into a rectangle (it will still be sticky), wrap in plastic and place in the fridge for an hour.
  2. Beat the butter and 1/4 cup flour together until aerated. On a well-floured surface, roll the dough out into a large rectangle, about 1/4 inch thick. Spread with the butter mixture, then fold up like a letter, divided in thirds, first one third over the center, then the other third over that. Return to the fridge for a half hour, then roll out again and fold the same way, returning to the fridge for a half hour. Repeat two more times. (You can do two of these at night and the next two in the morning). Return the dough to the fridge overnight.
  3. Roll the dough out to about 3/4" thick and cut into rounds, then cut out the centers - make sure your cutters are sharp and do not twist after cutting. Heat about two inches of oil in a large pot to 350 F.* Fry the doughnuts, flipping when necessary, until golden brown. Drain on a paper towel.
  4. You can toss the doughnuts when still warm in some granulated sugar, or make the glaze. For the glaze, Mix together the powdered sugar and milk until you get the desired consistency. Drizzle over the cronuts. Serve as soon as possible.
  5. *** Can you do this without a thermometer? Sure, people fried things long before they were commercially available. But I find that the temperature fluctuates in between batches so much that its not advisable - too hot, the outside will burn before the inside is cooked and too cold, the dough will absorb tons of oil as it fries. Plus, you can If you do choose to however, you can test the temperature by throwing scraps in - they should brown in about 60 seconds.