eHow Extras Blog

What’s a Cronut?


If you wait with bated breath like I do for every  new episode of Jerry Seinfeld’s “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee,” you, like me, saw today’s installment with Tina Fey. Another great episode per usual—Jerry and Tina drive a gorgeous 1967 Volvo 1800s from the Upper West Side (where “you’ll never ever see a truly good-looking person”–Tina’s words, not mine) to the Dominique Ansel Bakery for Cronuts. Wait. A Cronut–what’s a Cronut? And why do I have to capitalize it? I discover at the 12-minute mark a Cronut is a pastry. More specifically, a fancy donut.

Before I go on, I should let you know that I hate when I’m behind the curve on anything and food trends are the worst to be behind if you’re friends with a “foodie.” Do you know any foodies?  They just looove to let you know how much money they spent on tiny meals and how the food is “really more a work of art than human sustenance.” (A real quote from an insufferable friend who fancies himself a foodie.)

So I did a little research and found out what makes a Cronut so special (or as what TIME magazine called, one of the “25 Best Inventions” of 2013). Slow year for inventions?

First off, a Cronut is a trademarked food. Inventor Dominique Ansel (shown here) actually registered it so no one can make a similar treat and call it a Cronut. Not that bakers haven’t tried—there are lots of imitators all over the world with names like the Dossant, the Doissant, the Cronot, the Doughssant, and my favorite, the Scronut.

So what’s in it? How is it made? What makes it so special? It’s simply a croissant-doughnut hybrid, made with flakey, laminated dough; fried in grapeseed oil and rolled in sugar; filled with cream; and slathered in a glaze. Flavors change monthly.

How great are they? I have no idea—you can only get a legit Cronut in Ansel’s NYC bakery and I’m currently in Santa Monica, California, but scalpers are selling one $5 Cronut for up to $100. That might be a good price depending on how valuable your time is—a typical wait is a couple hours. (Yep, that’s a photo of an actual line in front of Ansel’s bakery–that lady in the pink oxford looks like she’s really questioning why she’s decided to wait two hours for a pastry.)

Of course, if anyone in New York is reading this, feel free to send a few to me at the eHow offices—each Cronut’s shelf life is short (24 hours), but if you ship them overnight, I’d be more than willing to return the favor with a dozen In-N-Out burgers—still impossible to find east of the Mississippi.

All photos: Getty Images except the top image, Seinfeld/Crackle

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