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With all the recent talk of cronuts – a Brangelina-style portmanteau for croissant donuts – racking up buzz and clicks on the internet, I felt compelled to share with you a treat of similar name that was on the scene WAY before a fancy-pants New York bakery “invented” a hybrid pastry that’s got the fickle foodie popinjays all aflutter.
See, the lovely folks at Canada Safeway were selling the Croissant Doughnut long before anyone got all hot and bothered about deep-fried puff-pastry. They’re on trays in the glass-doored doughnut case, next to the rest of the fresh donuts, and they’re just odd enough to catch a doughnut lover’s attention.
While I’ve never tried an official cronut, I’ve seen enough photos to know that they’re different from the Safeway variety. The Safeway ones are shaped like a croissant, they’re deep fried, they’re coated in super-sweet sugary glaze, and then they’re finished off with a lightly drizzled zig-zag line of chocolate glaze. They’re not $5 per unit, nor do they sell for $40 on the black market (not that I’ve recently checked into asking prices on the doughnut black market). These puppies go for $0.65 per croissoughnut. They’re even cheaper if you buy them after 7 p.m. Put that in your cashmere turtleneck and smoke it.
The Pitch: Two words: croissant doughnut. If that doesn’t sell it, what will?
The Look: Not as big as a long-john. They look more like croissants than doughnuts, until you see the thick layer of glaze. Sometimes they get a bit rumpled-looking.
The Taste: Decadent. Soft, oily and sweet. They taste like a Safeway croissant, but with the fat levels amped up and the sugar factor pushed to the extreme. They’re not at all crispy; instead, they’re silky, buttery, oily soft, with a sticky glaze coating that gets all over everything. If you don’t have a napkin or four handy, don’t bother eating one.
RATINGS AND DETAILS
Cost: $0.65 for a single Croissant Doughnut at Safeway in Calgary.
Value for cash money: Great.
Availability: Canada Safeway.
Nutrition?: Lord knows. I can’t imagine what the sugar/fat damage would be like with these things. Moderation, please.
The verdict: While these Safeway Croissant Doughnuts are no doubt very different than the cronuts of internet lore, they’re still worthy of acknowledgement. They’re not fancy, but they’re a guilty pleasure.