Artisan bakeries are raising the doughnut to a whole new level, using fresh croissant dough to bring us the irresistible doughssant or cronut.
Forget cupcakes and macarons, the latest sweet craze is the humble doughnut. And this trend has taken Cape Town by storm with American chain Krispy Kreme launching its first South African store in the Mother City this month. If you find it hard to get excited about this supermarket staple (however many sprinkles, fillings and toppings you add on) rather seek out an artisanal alternative that has been gathering a cult following over the last few years.
A cross between a croissant and a doughnut; the cronut or doughssant is a gloriously decadent ball of freshly made croissant dough, deep fried at precisely the right temperature to balloon up light and fluffy, with a buttery flavour that puts regular doughnuts deep in the shade.
Where do I find a cronut?
Cronuts are hard to track down and this adds to the mystique. You won’t find them at any old bakery – only those that make croissants from scratch, so they’ll have fresh croissant dough to play with, making them in limited quantities and selling out fast.
Jason Bakery’s doughssants have become a Cape Town institution among those who are prepared to get up early on a Saturday morning and queue at the Bree Street bakery. We were there for the “High Tea” doughssant, filled with an Earl Grey custard and topped with a miniature macaron, tiramisu, lemon meringue and lamington – a thing of beauty and over the top indulgence. Made only on a Saturday, each week has a surprise theme and they never repeat, so it’s a once-off taste extravaganza with devotees reminiscing nostalgically over their favourites.
Coimbra in Claremont is the place to sample the essential nature of the cronut, lightly sprinkled with cinnamon sugar without any filling, the perfect treat if you want light and fluffy without the richness of a full on dessert. They do filled cronuts too, but they sell out fast so it's worth calling and reserving a box.
Schoon in Stellenbosch, home of artisan bread and patisserie, make enough extra croissant dough every day to spare for a few batches of cronuts, filled with either salted caramel, chocolate, vanilla or lemon.
And those in the Deep South have their own source of decadent delight at the Village Market at Noordhoek Farm Village every Wednesday evening from 5pm. The Foodbarn Deli conjure up a range of cronuts just for the market, lavishly sandwiched with chocolate, cinnamon or vanilla cream mousseline.
Taste for yourself:
Jason’s Bakery 021 424 5644 jasonbakery.com
Coimbra 021 683 3083 coimbrabakery.co.za
Schoon De Companje 021 883 2187 decompanje.co.za
The Foodbarn Deli 021 789 1966 thefoodbarn.co.za
This article originally appeared in Neighbourhood, Sunday Times.