Monday, September 19, 2016

Rant: The Cider Donut Battle

One of the best elements of autumn is enjoying a fresh and warm Cider Donut. Though they can be found at some supermarkets, small food shops, and even restaurants, it is hard to beat buying them at a local apple orchard where they can use their own fresh picked apples.

Yesterday, I stopped at my favorite spot, Russell Orchards in Ipswich, and picked up a dozen ($9.50). At Russell Orchards, they make their donuts from scratch, using their own special recipe as well as their own apples. During this time, you often can see their staff making the donuts, dropping the dough into the fryer and then seeing the fried donuts moving down a conveyor belt where they will be bagged. It is said that Russell Orchards sells approximately 200,000 cider donuts each year and it is easy to understand why.

For me, their donuts (pictured above) are soft and moist, with a slightly crusty exterior, and the right balance of apple and spice flavors. And when they are warm, it's hard not to eat several on your way from the cash register to your car. I'm glad that I don't live closer or I'd stop by more frequently and devour far too many cider donuts.

However, not all cider donuts are like that. There are basically two types of cider donuts, the soft ones like at Russell, and heavier, more cakey cider donuts that you can find at a number of other farms. It is a battle as to which is the best, and I am firmly on the side of the lighter style. With the heavier style, they tend to be more dry, less moist, and you need to have a drink with them to help wash down the dry donut. They also feel heavier in your stomach so that you rarely want more than one. Even warm, they still feel heavy and dry, and just don't satisfy like the lighter style. Why would anyone prefer the heavier style?

If you prefer the heavier, more cakey cider donuts, please tell me why.

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