Every June, those in the know mark national Doughnut Day. The inspiration for this food history observance traces back to the early 1900s.
Photo by: Photo by artisanbreadinfive.com
The first Doughnut Day started in Chicago in 1938, as a Salvation Army fund-raiser that also honored the women who served doughnuts to soldiers in World War I.
Photo by: Courtesy photo
Cut out homemade doughnuts with cookie cutters. Anything small — even a shot glass — can be used to cut out the center holes. The Os — doughnut holes — can also be dropped in the fryer, or baked.
Photo by: Courtesy photo
June 6, 2012 10:39:05 AM
We humans seem addicted to bestowing a "day" upon almost anything. In June alone, there's Flip a Coin Day, Hug Your Cat Day, Sewing Machine Day and, a personal favorite, International Panic Day. So it should come as no surprise there is such a thing as national Doughnut Day.
Annually celebrated the first Friday of every June, the holey doughnut (or donut, if you insist) was in the spotlight June 1, at least for those who noticed. If you missed it, no worry. Any day can be doughnut day in your kitchen, especially with today's recipes for some homemade versions.
What's most interesting about Doughnut Day is its origins. It succeeds a fund-raising event created in Chicago by The Salvation Army in 1938, to help the needy during the Great Depression and honor the women who served doughnuts to soldiers during World War I.
As the story goes, soon after the United States' entry into the war in 1917, the Salvation Army conducted a fact-finding mission in France to see how they might best assist enlisted troops. One conclusion was that soldiers needed canteens or social centers (called "huts") that provided friendly smiles, baked goods, writing supplies and stamps and a clothes-mending service. The huts were established in the U.S. near Army training centers.
About 250 Salvation Army volunteers went to France. There, because of difficulties in providing freshly baked goods from huts established in abandoned buildings near the front lines, volunteers Ensign Margaret Sheldon and Adjutant Helen Purviance are credited with coming up with the idea of providing doughnuts. It's said the sweet rings were sometimes fried in soldiers' helmets. They were an instant hit. Salvation Army records reveal that, after one busy day, Sheldon wrote, "Today I made 22 pies, 300 doughnuts and 700 cups of coffee."
Yes, Virginia, you can go low-fat
If you've already given up your 20-ounce sugary drinks and are considering swearing off doughnuts, too, take five. You can actually make a low-fat alternative to commercial versions laden with saturated fats. Evaporated skim milk provides richness, while baking eliminates the added fat from cooking in a deep fryer, says Maddie Ruud at maddieruud.hubpages.com. The recipe is included. The approximate calorie count is about 143 calories, with 1.68 grams of fat.
Baked doughnut topping options include cinnamon, sugar or confectioner's sugar. Just spray warm doughnuts thoroughly with nonstick butter-flavored cooking spray and toss in a bowl of cinnamon, white or brown sugar or powdered sugar.
If you're still too bikini-conscious to allow yourself at least an occasional indulgence, you may have to wait for another of our unusual annual observances -- International No Diet Day, May 6, 2013.
Total time: One hour
Makes about 1 1/2 dozen
4 1/4 cups (18 ounces) plain flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon salt
Pinch grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 tablespoons butter, melted
Each doughnut: 291 calories; 4 grams protein; 31 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram fiber; 17 grams fat; 3 grams saturated fat; 41 mg. cholesterol; 9 grams sugar; 237 mg. sodium.
Makes 12 doughnuts
2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
3/4 cup milk, at room temperature
1/4 cup apple cider, at room temperature
1/4 cup warm apple cider (about 110 degrees)
3 1/4 cups flour
4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
3 egg yolks
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoons salt
For the apple cider frosting:
3 cup confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup apple cider
canola oil for frying
(Source: coconutandlime.com/Rachel Rappaport)
Total time: About 1 hour
Makes abut 1 1/2 dozen doughnuts
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
3 tablespoons butter
3 cups (12.75 ounces) flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 cup strong coffee, cooled
Canola oil for frying
Each doughnut: 300 calories; 4 grams protein; 26 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams fiber; 21 grams fat; 5 grams saturated fat; 55 mg. cholesterol; 8 grams sugar; 168 mg. sodium.
(Source: LA Times)
Makes about 24 doughnuts
1 1/3 cups unsweetened evaporated milk
1 packet dry active yeast
2 tablespoon unsalted butter or margarine
2/3 cup granulated sugar or Splenda
5 cups white flour
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
(Source: Maddie Ruud, maddieruud.hubpages.com)
Jan Swoope is the Lifestyles Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.