Summer is winding down. You can see the hints everywhere. In my house it is school buses, new backpacks, new clothes and a schedule that is so tightly synchronized, the Pentagon would be proud.
Before we headed back to a "routine" we decided to "Get out of Dodge", mind you, with a little escape to that magical city of New York. For a 3 day trip, we put a lot on the agenda. American Girl for my daughter and me. The Lego Store and Nintendo for my son, ice cream at Serendipity, pizza from the oldest pizza restaurant in the country, Central Park, and heart attack inducing rice pudding. The final thing on our list not to miss was doughnuts.
Doughnuts. I am so "take it or leave it" with donuts. Mostly, I am a leave it (unless Krispy Kreme glazed are involved). I can proudly walk into Dunkin Donuts at any given time of the day, get my coffee and that's it. I can not make this statement anymore because I discovered Doughnut Plant.
Doughnut Plant has been getting a lot of press as of lately, which steered my husband and I to find it when we went to NYC this time around. The Neeleys of Food Network mentioned it on "The Best Thing I Ever Ate". Bobby Flay challenged the guy on "Throwdown", and it was written up in Bon Appetit magazine as one of America's top 10 donuts. Yeah. We had to go see what the fuss was about.
After taking a jaunt to the Lower East Side, we found the place. Small little place. Non-descript with the exception of a sidewalk blackboard outside with today's specials. I've been to this neighborhood of NYC before and totally have walked by.
Walking in, we were armed to try a few. Sadly, they were cash only, and we only had $10. (This has changed since then!) Doughnuts were not cheap..we are talking anywhere from $2 to $3 per donut. We decided on the Peanut Butter and Jelly, the creme brulee and the tres leches.
These are not doughnuts. They are true pastries.
Peanut Butter and Jelly: Not a traditional looking doughnut. The doughnut is square shaped so that the filling (real raspberry jam) goes ALL THE WAY AROUND the donut. Not a glob in the middle. The outside is a yeast doughnut, smothered in a peanut butter glaze with chopped peanuts. Unbelievable. The four of of each had a bit and I can honestly say it was a huge doughnut.
Creme Brulee: This came out looking like an over sized munchkin. This was no munchkin, my friend. The exterior had caramelized sugary coating and the inside was a creamy custard. Yeah. Creme Brulee.
Tres Leches: Oh dear God, this was the most amazing doughnut I ever had. It is a cake doughnut that has almost a milk filling inside. I am generally not a cake doughnut fan. If I am going to eat a doughnut, I like my doughnut yeasty and fluffy.
Everyone agreed the tres leches was absolutely knee buckling. So, with the change we had from the $10 and some coins I found in the bottom of my purse we got another.
This location is the original Doughnut Plant. Doughnuts can be found in specialty food stores in NYC as well, including Dean and DeLuca, Zabars, Joe's Art of Coffee, among other vendors. Weirdly enough, Doughnut Plant also has bakeries in Japan and Korea.
Doughnut Plant 379 Grand Street, NYC, NY 10002 (212) 505-3700