[recipe] adventures in baking: homemade cronuts
I don’t remember where I first read about the “cronut”, but apparently it’s all the rage in NYC. At first I thought, “WTF is a CRONUT?!” Then I thought, “Hmm. I bet I could make that, actually…”
A cronut, for those of you that don’t know, is basically a cross between a croissant and a donut – or basically, a deep fried croissant:
When I shared the cronut link with my co-worker and friend, Lauren, she was totally on it and wanted to “sponsor my cronut experiment”. Earlier this week she came over to be my sous chef and we made cronuts!
Here’s how I did it, since you can’t get one of these on the West Coast. Not that I’m really in a rush to pay $5 a pop for one. Instead, for a mere $3.99, I got to make 8 of them plus the holes.
First… I started with a box of mini frozen croissants from Trader Joe’s. I let them sit out on my warm patio for about 5 hours.
After five warm hours, I had these little puffballs. It turned out well that they sort of overinflated so it kind of all came together for one round shape.
Using cookie cutters, we cut out the middles and made cronut holes with them. The cronut holes were our inital test to see how they would fry up. I found that the extra air really needed to be “poked” out of them otherwise they would not flip over! After I saw that happening, I cut holes out of all of the croissant dough so I wouldn’t have trouble with the bigger donuts.
I used my smaller deep fryer so I could only fit one cronut comfortably into the fryer.
We fried them at 350 degrees until golden brown on each side (about 2-3 minutes per side).
Can you see the flaky layers?!
After draining on a paper towel, the cronuts went for a bath in some glaze. Lauren and I made two glaze flavors: vanilla honey and orange (with orange peel). The orange was our favorite of the two.
I think the orange zest really makes the color and flavor pop!
The best way to do it is to let them cool a bit, dunk in the glaze and let it set. Then… dunk again for double the glaze. You can also add sprinkles or whatever else you like to make them more festive.
The cronuts taste best on the day of making. That way you get the maximum enjoyment since these babies are SUPER crunchy and flaky. They’re really intense, too, since you’re getting the fried dough plus all the flaky butterness from the croissant itself. Despite it being intensely rich, they’re really, really yummy and I recommend you try and make these just as soon as you can. Using the frozen croissants from Trader Joe’s just saves a lot of time and headaches – I mean, I wasn’t about to go and make actual croissant dough first you know. Oy.
Here’s the recipe for the glaze if you want to try and make these suckers!
- 1/3 cup butter
- 2 cups confectioners' sugar
- 1/3 cup hot water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 2 1/2 teaspoons orange juice
- zest of one orange
- In order to make two glazes, I just eyeballed and measured everything and cut in half and dumped the butter, sugar and hot water into two separate bowls.
- To one bowl, I added vanilla and honey.
- To the second bowl, I added orange juice and zest.
- Mix everything together until smooth. Use to dip (and double dip) your donuts!