With the holiday of Chanukah upon us, now is the perfect time to explore the world of the deep fried cronot. Cronots are a cross between a croissant and a doughnut. This fusion dessert is actually perfect for the fusion holiday of Thanksgiving and Chanukah! Fried foods are all the rage this holiday, stemming from the miracle of the menorah oil lasting eight days instead of one. There is no better way in my humble opinion, to celebrate the miracle of oil than deep frying dough. Cronots are essentially made by taking buttery croissant dough, cutting it into a doughnut shape, and frying it instead of baking. They look just like a traditional doughnut until you bite into one. Cronots are crispy, light, tender, and flaky. They rise from the yeast in the dough, as well as from the layers and layers of fat that has been rolled and folded into the dough. When you cut it open, you can see the beautiful layers that were created from all the folding of the dough.
I have seen cronots cut in half and filled with all sorts of fillings including pastry cream and topped with glazes and powdered sugar. I’m sure they would be delicious if filled with your favorite fruit jam or jelly. I like to keep my cronots simple by rolling them in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar, while they are still warm from the fryer. The cinnamon sugar gives this delicious pastry extra texture and sweetness.
Croissants and cronots are generally packed with butter, but my version uses a mixture of margarine and shortening to keep it non-dairy. I find that the addition of the shortening makes the dough a little easier to work with because margarine alone is not as easy to work with as straight butter. The dough itself is not very hard to make, it just takes a lot of time and patience. There are a lot of steps involved but all the work is worth it when you bite into this crispy, light, one of a kind pastry!
Here is the full recipe for my Non-Dairy Cronot.