Is the canele making another run at blowing up? Last week, New York City got its first canele-only bakery but quietly, for about a month, Thomas Keller's Bouchon Bakery has been selling mini versions of the sweet treats at their Time Warner Center location.
If you've never tried a canele, it's a small French pastry made with sugar, flour, vanilla, rum, and eggs that has a sweet, caramelized crust and a moist custard-like interior. To date, there are still only about ten bakeries in New York that sell them, including Dominique Ansel, Balthazar, and Boise Tea Parlor.
Bouchon sells their Mini-Canele for $3 each—the same price Dominique Ansel and Bosie currently offer their large Canele. And as with those versions, Bouchon uses the significantly more labor-intensive copper molds for baking, that some believe results in a more caramelized crust, although this last point is controversial.
How do they taste? They're beautiful. The crust has a delightfully crunchy exterior and the custard-like center isn't too sweet. Despite its small size, this canele packs a flavor and aroma punch—I could smell the vanilla right after slicing the canele in half for these photos. Stay tuned.
About the author: Native New Yorker Niko Triantafillou is the founder of DessertBuzz.com his photographs of desserts and pastry chefs have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post and Dessert Professional Magazine. He is an unabashed foodie nerdling. Follow him on Twitter at @DessertBuzz.