The Cronut: A crispy, sugar-drenched donut

Elizabeth DeCicco

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When French chef Dominique Ansel fused a croissant with an American-made doughnut, what he produced was something out of the ordinary yet rather a heavenly pastry creation that sold like hot cakes among New Yorkers.

It has primarily been called the cronut, a rounded, deep-fried croissant that has been appearing in more and more bakeries across the nation and worldwide. The cronut overall tastes like a crispy, sugar-drenched donut, but has a light, flaky and layered texture. However, the delicious experience of a cronut varies at competing bakeries.

The cronut is a registered trademark of where it was born, Dominique Ansel Bakery in Manhattan. The New York Post had declared Ansel as the “Willy Wonka of NYC.” Ansel created this sensational pastry to be innovative and creative for his bakery, and took him two months to develop the recipe, Ansel told USA Today.

After making its debut one year ago in May, cronut fans spread the world in such countries as Taiwan, Brazil and South Korea, according to National Geographic.

A number of Sacramento bakeries have participated in the cronut craze, featuring their own imitations.

Estelle’s Patisserie, a French bakery at 901 K Street, sells its version of the cronut every Sunday morning and Tuesday afternoons. Supervisor Jordan Oneill said the bakery established their own version and named it the “croixnut,” simply due to copyright.

Estelle’s introduces a new croixnut flavor of filling each week, along with an option of cinnamon sugar flavored croixnuts. Past flavors have included salted caramel, strawberry creme brulee, amaretto and white chocolate lavender. A croixnut costs about $4 each.

Located at 6413 Riverside Boulevard in South Sacramento, Le Croissant Factory makes its “dosant” every Saturday and Sunday. “They have become very popular with the younger generation, especially college students,” said owner Peter Kuo.

At $2 each, dosants at Le Croissant Factory range being filled with cream cheese or whipped cream to being sprinkled with cinnamon sugar.

At 9176 Kiefer Boulevard in Rosemont, Donut Time’s “cro-nots” are available on Saturdays and Sundays, and by pre-order, costing about $3.

Manager Christine Pe said their bakery “played around with the flavors and came up with glazed, Bavarian custard, whipped cream, chocolate drizzle (and) cinnamon sugar – which is the most popular.”

Local replicas of the cronut sell quickly on weekend mornings by 11 a.m. and it seems this high-demand pastry trend will continue to stick around, defeating the average fried donut or buttery croissant.