I’m addicted to donuts. I devour glazed rainbow sprinkled mocha-filled monstrosities that coalesce into cholesterol heaps in my gut. I’ve gained twenty pounds from sugar bombs, greedily dipping maple napalms into my throat until I pick up Die You Donut Bastards by Cameron Pierce about a world filled with Killer Donuts. “Breakfast sweets rule the world,” Pierce writes as he satirizes and allegorizes our obsession with food. It doesn’t stray far from the truth when you consider that Krispy Kremes was the center of the universe for some and are filled with friendly-sounding chemicals like Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Iron as Ferrous Sulfate, and Potassium Sorbate. I asked some Entropy contributors to review their favorite donuts. You can eat some of their selections while reading some of Pierce’s brilliant stories (including a favorite called Lantern Jaw where there is a universe full of monsters in one girl’s mouth). Share your dozen or so donuts with your neighbor. Hug them, then hand them a twisty (the non-lethal kind). Wait, is that an oxymoron?
David S. Atkinson: My favorite doughnut is most of the ones at Voodoo Doughnut. I don’t dig all they have, but I dig what they have more than anyone else. The Voodoo Doll, the Portland Cream, Captain my Captain, The Loop, Mango Tango, Gay Bar, Voodoo Bubble, Orangatang…it’s impossible for me to pick out only one favorite.
JS Breukelaar: What is it about sugar-fried lard that so gets our juices flowing? Every atom in our body should rebel against the very concept, but no, we’d crawl right IN through that doughnut hole if we could, and live forever in the land of sugary rings of fatty sugar-fat forever. Cinnamon doughnuts at Halloween, powdered sugar-doughnuts my grandmother would split in two with trembling fingers. Chocolate doughnuts for the munchies. Crullers at the office. My Dutch in-laws make Oliebol, which translates as ‘oil balls’ and are basically ice-cream scoops of deep fried fat rolled in sugar; in Sydney you can get Zepolle, little ricotta-filled Italian doughnuts to eat with your espresso on the run. Far as I’m concerned, if there was a sugary land of fatty adventure time through the doughnut-hole, and I’m pretty sure there is, the Pineapple Doughnut’d be the bad guy. Who the hell invented that syrupy sucker? Die already you doughnut bastard! Just die.
Gabino Iglesias: Boston cream (or cream or kreme, depending on how weird you are when it comes to spelling donut names) is the best donut there is because the filling swallows the empty, useless space where the hole usually is and it tastes like dreams. I once ate a dozen and then moaned and breathed like a wounded beats for a few hours. It was great.
Alex Kalamaroff: It wasn’t till I got to Boston that donuts became a part of my everyday life. I’m a sucker for snazzy seasonal treats, so for a while I opted for whatever was most colorful and sprinkle-y. Dunkin Donuts offers many such delicacies— a Red Velvet Cream behemoth to get us through winter and an ostentatious Mint Chocolate Chip creation for St. Patrick’s Day. But I was on my way into work as a substitute teacher and it was too early even for my gargantuan sweet tooth. Plus all those sprinkles and jism-y cream fillings upset my hang-over. So I turned to the classic, the simple, the incredibly dunkable Old-fashioned Donut. Another way to say this is I fell in love. What could be a nicer way to start my day, with dawn breaking over the Charles and the local old folks gathered around a grimy table bemoaning last night’s Red Sox game, than to relax for a moment. I had to ready myself for Charlestown High School where soon as I signed-in I’d get told by Val what subject I’d be teaching. “Who wants to learn about lateral surface area, kids?” The truth is I learned more substitute teaching for Boston Public Schools than I ever did in college but that’s another story. Anyway, for a while that was my breakfast, a small cup of watery coffee, a cigarette, and an Old-fashioned Donut, which made me feel oddly awesome, like I was onto something, like I was this ragged detective who’s about to solve another great mystery.
Kari Larsen: In fact, for a long time, I have had problems with sugar. It makes me sick. It has gotten to the point that, now, I cannot even enjoy one measly Reese’s cup without feeling it. But at one point I was able to eat cake and ice cream and cereal and chocolate — but I have never, ever been able to eat doughnuts. When my family would get doughnut holes or someone would bring in doughnuts at work, even if I tried to eat them, I could barely get past one bite. Doughnuts represent a perfect storm of everything I cannot eat. And, unlike cake, my body understands it. I don’t find the sight of them appealing, so — unlike cake — I will not try and eat one every time I see it. Consuming cake has the same outcome, but because it takes more than one bite of cake to make me sick, the Pavlovian response has not been ingrained in me yet.
Janice Lee: APPLE FRITTER: This is a superior doughnut. Real chunks of apple with the perfect combination of fried crispy and sweet on the outside, and soft, tender dough on the inside. They’re even usually still good after being left out for awhile, and being a lover of pie, the best doughnut for that craving. Honorable Mention: Krispy Kreme’s Original Glazed Donuts. I mean, I can eat a dozen of these in one sitting. There’s something about these, so light and fluffy, you can seriously stuff like 10 of these into your mouth like it ain’t no thang.
Vi Khi Nao: I do like donuts very much. When I was in college, a woman from Europe told me they looked like Catholic churches.
Eddy Rathke: Glam Doll Donuts in Minneapolis serves the best doughnuts in the world:http://www.glamdolldonuts.com/ I’m quite partial to the Varga Girl, which is filled with almond cream and covered in chocolate and almond flakes. It just looks awesome too:
Quincy Rhoads: Bread is often associated with life. It sustains. Krispy Kremes are pretty much the same.
Shoshana Seidman: There is nothing like a great buttermilk bar donut. It has to be excellent — my absolute favorite being Primo’s donuts in West LA. It tastes like the earth, like the kind of fragrance that won’t leave your bones because it’s filled with a distinct memory. I could cry eating a buttermilk bar – complicated, layered, and nuanced.
Bud Smith: Apple Cider donuts with sugar on top. When it’s close to thanksgiving time, I go walking around pumpkin patches, apple orchards, places with haunted hayrides. I’m not interested in the pumpkins, the apples or the haunted hayrides. I’m there for those delicious motherfucking apple cider donuts. I eat about ten of them, then I go and lay down in the falling leaves, smiling.
Meghan Tutolo: My favorite donut is the jelly donut. This is fine by me. You know why? Because nobody else likes the jelly donut. There’s no one fighting for the last jelly donut in the box. Hell, I’ve seen them get thrown away. And trust that I’m not below plucking a jelly donut out of the office trash and eating it. Preferably raspberry.