Patisserie Week Technical Bake: Johnny Iuzzini's French Crullers

By Marisa Dabney | Jan 5th, 2017

Johnny Iuzzini advises the bakers to read the recipe for his French Crullers well because the slightest mistake could have the biggest consequences. In this semi-final Technical Bake Challenge during "Patisserie Week," the bakers must make a dozen French Crullers which are donuts. These donuts are made by piping a delicate choux pastry, deep frying it and then applying glaze. It is important when making the dough that it is not over mixed as you want a certain texture and elasticity to the dough. The two ends of the dough, after being piped, must be brought together at the same level. Nice ridges in the French Cruller will prove to the judges whether or not the donut was piped and fried correctly.  Check out the full recipe below and watch the full episode of "Patisserie Week" from The Great American Baking Show Season 2 episode 7.

Makes 12


For the pate a choux:

½ cup plus 2 teaspoons milk

½ cup plus 2 teaspoons water

8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 ¼ cups bread flour

Finely grated zest of 1 large orange

3 large eggs

1 large egg white

Non- stick cooking spray, for greasing

For the honey & whiskey glaze:

4 cups confectioners' sugar

Pinch kosher salt

4 tablespoons honey

3 tablespoons bourbon

6 tablespoons milk


1. Cut out twelve 3" x 3" squares of parchment paper.

2. In a large saucepan, slowly bring the milk water, butter, sugar, and salt to simmer over a medium low heat. Remove from the heat, add the flour all at once, and stir with a wooden spoon until combined and evenly moistened.

3. Return the pan to a medium- low heat and stir continuously for 3 to 4 minutes to dry out the mixture. The dough should pull away from the sides of the pan, and a skin should begin to form in the base of the pan.

4. Transfer the dough to a standing mixer bowl and use the spoon to spread the dough out in a thin layer against the sides of the bowl. Let stand for at least 15 minutes, until cool.

5. Attach the paddle to the bowl and turn the mixer on to a low speed. Add the orange zest and 2 of the eggs and mix until completely incorporated. Stop the mixer and scrape down the bowl. Turn the mixer back on to low and add another egg. Mix until incorporated. After the 3 eggs, scrape the bowl well and check the consistency. It will still be a bit firm, add the egg white and mix well. The dough should hold a peak when you pull the paddle out of the dough but should immediately fold over onto itself.

6. The dough should now be smooth, elastic, and firm enough to pipe and hold its shape but not runny. You can test it by putting a heaping tablespoon on a plate. The dough should collapse slightly but still a rounded shape.

7. Refrigerate the dough for 10 minutes before piping to get a nice shape.

8. Heat a deep fat fryer to 375F and brush the squares of paper on one side with vegetable oil.

9. Fit a pastry bag with a large star tip (1/2"). Fill the bag with the cooled pate a choux. Pipe even rings of dough on to the prepared parchment paper just making ends meet and connect. 

10. Place 3 crullers at a time paper side up into the hot oil. After a minute or so carefully removed the paper from the cruller with tongs and allow them to fry for another couple of minutes until golden brown. Then carefully flip over and fry the other side until golden brown once more.

11. Carefully remove the crullers from the oil onto a glazing rack to cool slightly. Repeat the process with the rest of the doughnuts 2 at a time.

12. For the honey whiskey glaze, combine the milk and whiskey and warm them to body temperature. Combine the sifted confectioners sugar, salt, honey and milk mixture in a bowl until smooth. Adjust consistency with more milk if too stiff or more sifted confectioners sugar if too runny.

13. Dip the warm crullers in the glaze, coating both sides completely, place on a glazing rack pretty side up to allow excess glaze to drip off until the icing sets. 


1. The roux must be stirred continuously so it does not become lumpy.

2. The mixture is ready when a thin film coats the bottom of the pan.

3. The ends of the dough must be joined at the end when they are piped otherwise they won't stay in a circle once fried, and they will come apart. They must not overlap as the will be too thick in one area and not an even shape. 

4. The crullers should be glazed when they are warm, so the glaze soaks into the choux.