Dish of the Day: The Cronut
Every dish comes from somewhere – either inspired by something, someone, somewhere, a culture, a technique – many things. People rarely re-invent the wheel; they just add a few spokes or make it lighter or spin quicker.
One example of not re-inventing the wheel is the DOSANT, a fried croissant rolled in sugar and filled with crème pâtissière and finished with cocoa nibs.
Now, it’s no secret to where this idea came from, and I would never try to pretend that I had a brainwave to fry a croissant as if it was a doughnut and take all the glory in my stride. Everyone knows it was the brainchild of Dominique Ansel. But it appears to be that an idea needs to be replicated a certain amount of times before it’s acceptable to have a play with. If I put a schnitzel or a croquette on my menu, nobody accuses me of stealing ideas or jumping on a trend. Yet if it’s current, all hell breaks loose.
Ultimately, it’s some crispy pastry with sweet cream and chocolate. Like that’s never been done before. Also, its not a trend, it’s a cool bakery that had an amazing idea, executed it well and inspired a whole world of people to replicate it. Well bloody done. There’s no higher compliment than having chefs use your baby as inspiration for a new dish, and if I was sitting in my bakery with a three-hour queue and one of the best food cities playing with my idea, I’d have a pretty big smirk on my face.
It’s worth noting that the only reason we put this on the menu is because there was such an interest as to what they were, and after playing around for a while we thought we knew what it was (we didn’t) and offered to enlighten the lovely people of London to the calorific goodness that was the Cronut. Then it got popular. Really popular and I realised what we were doing was different to the Cronut, more like a ‘Zepola’ from Napoli, stuffed like a ‘Cornetto’. We changed the name to reflect what we were cooking, but thinking about it, maybe we should have called it a ‘Zepetto’…
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