Every now and again a food fad comes along to take the world by storm and then disappears again a month or so later.
The rainbow food trend was Instagram worthy and seemed more about spreading pretty coloured cream cheese on to cake rather than getting your five a day and the unicorn food trend seemed to be a pastel coloured version of the rainbow food trend, but then shrouded in glitter.
However, in the beginning, (In 2013) the cronut came along, and since then it has been a mainstay amongst hipster bakeries all over the world.
Invented by Dominique Ansel in New York City in his bakery of the same name, the cronut is a doughnut made with the light and flaky pastry of a croissant, but covered in icing, and filled with cream before being slathered in icing sugar, quite similar to how one might expect a doughnut to look.
Interestingly, a trademark was taken out on the name “cronut”, and “official” cronuts are only sold at Dominique Ansel Bakeries in New York.
However, fast forward a few years, and unofficial and totally tasty cronuts are available all over the world. Cronuts are even available in Ireland, at Krust bakery, so there’s no need to travel to New York for the world’s biggest hybrid pastry.
You might have to do a bit of digging to find where you can get them, but you’ll find the French-inspired doughnut in a few artisan bakeries.
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Due to limited production and the hype around the product, people went crazy for cronuts. When they were first released, punters would buy the cronuts and resell Ansel’s pastries for up to $100 each. At the end of 2013, TIME Magazine named the Cronut the year’s best invention and the fate of the sweet treat was sealed in history.
However, not everybody was happy with the cronut. There were several claims that Ansel was not the inventor of the cronut, and bakers from around the USA spoke up to tell their story.
Roy Audinno, a baker from Massachusetts, claimed that he had been making “doughsants” since 1991, a whole 21 years before Ansel.
French patisseries were also up in arms, and claimed that the cronut was an insult to French cuisine. However, Ansel wasn’t just a baker taking a shot in the dark with croissant pastry, to create a kind of hybrid Frankenpastry, he actually started his training when he was 16 at a patisserie school in Paris, and has owned a French patisserie in NYC for some time now.
Since the launch of the cronut in 2013, Ansel has gone on to open several more patisseries with outposts across the world, and has also released a “make-at-home cronut recipe” for those who want to skip the queues and give a homemade cronut a go. However, it is not for the faint of heart or the hungry, as you will have to work with your cravings for two days as you begin to prepare the dough and the ganache for the filling two days ahead of the day that you wish to eat the sweet treat.
Even with the rate at which trends pass with social media, one thing is sure, the cronut is currently standing the test of time, and might just be here to stay.