The Best Doughnut

Episode 108 | Jan 23, 2018

Where to find the best doughnut in Philadelphia.

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Listen to Full Belly Laughs Episode 108

Use the audio player below to enjoy Full Belly Laughs Podcast Episode 108: The Best Doughnut.

Are you in search of the best doughnuts? Looking for find the right combination of texture and flavor? On this episode we discuss all the famous places around Philadelphia and Central Jersey, as well as give some pointers on how to create perfect doughnuts at home.

Full Belly Laughs Podcast Episode 108: All Things Doughnuts

Don't have time to listen or jot down notes from your favorite parts of the episode? Below is a recap plus transcriptions of the interviews.On this episode Andy Lane and Megan Goetz are back again for game night with Brian Durkin. They chat about sweet treats and zero in on doughnuts. Andy and Brian get into a heated debate about which chain supplies the best doughnuts. In between all of that, Brian shares some conversations he had with friends about where to get the best doughtnuts. Brian even chats with a pastry chef about making doughnuts.

The Best Doughnuts Require Perfect Conditions

As Chef Jose Ramos shared, to make the perfect doughnut you need to control the climate. The right temperature and equipment makes all the difference. Ingredients matter too, and as doughnut lover Alex Colic mentioned seasonal ingredients go a long way.

Interview with Pastry Chef Jose Ramos

Below is the transcription of host Brian Durkin's conversation with pastry chef Jose Ramos.[Brian]: You’re my doughnut expert. Lay it down. What makes a good doughnut?[Jose]: Well there are two types of donuts.[Brian]: I didn’t even realize there are two types of donuts.[Jose]: There are cake donuts and yeast donuts.[Brian]: Let me see if I can guess the difference. Does Federal Donuts do cake donuts?[Jose]: Yeah they do cake donuts.[Brian]: And yeast donuts are like a Krispy Kreme.[Jose]: Basically. Or if you went to Beiler’s or something like that. Beiler’s is a yeast.[Brian]: What do you prefer?[Jose]: I’m .. I’ve cake doughnut -- am I allowed to swear?[Brian]: Yeah.[Jose]: I f*cking hate cake donuts.[Brian]: (laughter)[Jose]: They’re pointless.

You hate cake donuts?

[Jose]: Yeah. Yeast donuts are great. They’re art. Cake donuts are like coloring book. You just fill in the lines. It’s not hard to make.

Have you ever had to make, on the job, a cake doughnut? Or do you always demand that it be a yeast doughnut?

[Jose]: Nah. I worked for a place in Fishtown where they did cake donuts, and they’re not good. The sour cream donuts are as far as I’ll go with cake donuts. They are the only acceptable donuts that are cake donuts.[Brian]: Okay.[Jose]: They’re moist. Certain cake donuts are just too dry. Or too greasy. They are a pain in the @ss.[Brian]: So true.[Jose]: They are like grease cakes if you don’t do it right. If the oil is not right. Whereas with yeast donuts you can’t lose. Once you hit the oil you’re good. With cake donuts it’s like two minutes for each side, which is terrible because it’s just grease saturating into it.[Brian]: Hmmm. Okay.[Jose]: The difference between those two is baking powder versus baking soda. And just throw the sh*t together, cut them out, and go from there. With the yeast you have to activate the yeast. You can’t have the water too hot or too cold. You have to put actual work into it. There’s a science to it.

Much like making beer?

[Jose]: Yeah. Everything has to be right. The temperature has to be right. You have to mix the dough for the right amount of time. Knead it. Let it rise for the right amount of time. Temperature has to be perfect. Can’t be two degrees off. It’s a pain in the @ss, but if you want to have good donuts you learn how to do it?[Brian]: Where does one even get yeast?[Jose]: I believe the baking aisle you can get it.[Brian]: Really? I’ve never got into baking, so I’m mega ignorant.[Jose]: They sell little jars of it. You go there and get it. Read the directions and go from there.

When you buy yeast, since it is a living thing, is its shelf life really short?

[Jose]: As long as you refrigerate it, you’ll be fine. You have to refrigerate it. There are little tiny grains of yeast, like sand grains, but they come in little jars. They come into five pound bricks of them if you’re super into yeast.[Brian]: (laughing)[Jose]: If you like making bread, then get five pound bricks.[Brian]: Do you make your own bread at home?[Jose]: Not at home because I don’t have the proper -- like again, you have to have the proper proofing box. The temperature has to be right.

So your oven isn’t good enough?

[Jose]: Nah. It will get too high and you’ll cook your bread ahead of time. Some things you can do. If you put your oven on just the pilot light or warm. And the top of the stove gets warm, you can set up a little sheet pan, or cookie tray for those not kitchen savvy. Turn it upside down and you can proof them on that. Put a little plastic on there and let them sit there. If it’s too hot, they’re going to over proof and cook there on the spot. It’s time and temperature. It’s a pain in the @ss. People that try to do donuts at home and don’t have the proper climate, it’s a pain. If you can’t get that yeast to activate and rise, you don’t have a donut. You just have fried dough.[Brian]: Which is not a doughnut. Could still be good.[Jose]: If you just have fried dough, then make beignets. Beignets are dope. That’s good fried dough. Or funnel cake.[Brian]: Oh yeah. Funnel cake. Is it scary to make it at home because you have to have so much hot oil.[Jose]: If you don’t know what you’re doing in the kitchen, then don’t do it.[Brian]: That’s fair.[Jose]: Watch some videos. Watch videos of people frying turkeys and say, “That looks dangerous.” Then look at people frying donuts at home and say, “Okay that’s less dangerous.” See how to adjust the temperature and keep everything in a sane position. It’s easy. I try to make donuts at home once, again, if you don’t have the right temperature -- if it’s too hot -- you screw them.

What’s the right temperature?

[Jose]: You want to proof. I proof mine at 86 degrees. Which is slightly high for proofing.

What’s proofing?

[Jose]: You’re activating the yeast again.[Brian]: It sounds like Matt Damon solving an equation or something.[Jose]: It’s baking, man. That’s the thing. It’s science. It’s crazy. You have to be precise. I hate it.[Brian]: You hate it!?[Jose]: Dog, I went to culinary school. I didn’t go to baking school. I switched over to pastries half way through my career because I couldn’t work the line anymore. So I had to find a new job, find a new career, or adapt. I started making bread for the restaurant, started making pastries, and now I’m here.

Doing donuts at home is fine if you have the proper equipment. If not, just go to Dunkin’ Donuts and buy some. Just go to your local market and buy some.

[Jose]: Ah apple cider cake donuts are acceptable, because they are dope too.[Brian]: So the only way to salvage a cake doughnut is the flavor?[Jose]: Basically yeah or glaze the sh*t out of it. You can’t inject it with -- well you can.[Brian]: At that point are you just better making a cake?[Jose]: Yeah.[Brian]: (laughing)[Jose]: Just buy a f*cking box of Funfetti and go to town. I had Funfetti last weekend for a birthday cake and it was wonderful.

Two things I want to hit on. If someone came to you and was like, “yo I legit want to try making donuts at home”, what is everything you need?

[Jose]: They need YouTube and pen and paper to write down everything exactly how it’s supposed to be. I would read. That’s the beauty of today. Just literally YouTube how to do anything. There is a video out there for everything. Watch videos. Watch different videos.[Brian]: How do you know if someone is a stone-cold moron in their doughnut video? What are some things you can watch to make sure they aren’t BS’ing you.[Jose]: The view count.[Brian]: Anything else? Is there a technique they might say you should be doing, but if you were to watch you would say “oh that’s definitely nonsense”?[Jose]: Before watching videos read a recipe. Read an article. Just Google ‘yeast donuts at home’. I’m sure anything Martha Stewart -- read that. She’s got it on lock. She’s got the hospitality on lock. She knows her sh*t.

I know when I was getting into podcasting and different gear and equipment stuff, everybody has their own way of doing things. It doesn’t necessary apply to you.

[Jose]: Once you figuring it out, you’re going to try different things. And after trying different things you’re going to find the technique that suits you. Trial and error. Do it a couple of times. See which way you like it. Experiment. I’m getting into candy making. I’ve had to make one recipe like 25 times just to get it right. You have to figure it out.[Brian]: That’s fair.[Jose]: It’s crazy.[Brian]: Whether you’re making it at home or when you go out to buy donuts, what do you think, besides yeast versus cake, what makes a doughnut banging?[Jose]: Honestly it’s the dough itself.[Brian]: Really?[Jose]: The toppings don’t mean sh*t honestly. Also it depends if it’s made with butter or margarine. I prefer butter because they’re just super soft. It’s different. It’s not greasy after. You get something from Dunkin’ Donuts, you get that greasy film on your fingers.[Brian]: That’s margarine.[Jose]: Or lard or whatever. It’s not butter.[Brian]: Not like real butter.[Jose]: Yeah. The lard or margarine or whatever you use is more greasier. But honestly it’s the doughnut itself. If the … we’ll call it a bun. If the bun portion is perfect, it doesn’t matter what you put on top of it. It all comes down to the base.

What are the top tier people that make awesome donuts? Like I’m with you Beiler’s is banging. What are they doing with their dough that’s a step above? Or even with your donuts?

[Jose]: They’re not doing anything special honestly. They are doing very basic Amish things. The Amish use Crisco in their recipes.[Brian]: (laughter) Okay.[Jose]: So that’s what they’re using in their donuts. Their doughs are all Crisco-based. I don’t see the appeal of these donuts. I don’t think they’re good.[Brian]: Oh okay. Cool cool.[Jose]: That’s just me personally. It all starts with the bun. If it’s not good it’s not good. Everyone I know drools over them.[Brian]: People drool hard.[Jose]: I’m also not like those other people. I know food. I understand how things are supposed to be. Whereas the average person is like, “Ah this is great because it’s great.” You know? There is no real, “ah I wonder what it taste like if it’s done this way?” It sounds like I’m cocky, but it’s one of those things. It’s just not good.

You’ve definitely made my favorite doughnut of all time.

[Jose]: I’ve made some crazy donuts.[Brian]: The best doughnut far and away was the Samoa doughnut. Like the girl scout cookie.[Jose]: Oh yeah that one was f*cking dope.[Brian]: That one was banging.[Jose]: That one was real nice.[Brian]: How did you do it? The interesting thing about that was that you had that chocolate layer on the bottom like the cookie.[Jose]: It was perfect.[Brian]: It was the best doughnut I ever had. I saw you post it on Facebook, and I immediately went to your shop.[Jose]: It was great. Every aspect. Again, my doughnut dough is probably the best I’ve had -- obviously I’ve eaten a lot of donuts, I’m a husky guy.[Brian]: (laughter)[Jose]: It starts with that, but then everything on top of that, man. I caramelized condensed milk. You can do that. It’s crazy. You just boil the cans for like three hours and it goes from white to carmel. That’s what dulce .. dulce.[Brian]: I can never say that either.[Jose]: I’m f*cking Mexican and I can’t say dulce de leche. F*ck me. I can’t even speak right now. But yeah it’s caramelized condensed milk . It thickens it up, so it’s almost like puddy. Which is insane, but it’s still cream. Mix that sh*t with coconut. Slam that on top of it. Dip the bottom in chocolate. It was spot on.

And I love Samoa cookies, but I f*cking hate the girl scouts.

[Brian]: Really?[Jose]: I can’t go to stores. If I see they’re out, I won’t go. I will purposely avoid them. As soon as you make eye contact, that’s it. Six boxes. I’m not supporting that.[Brian]: (laughing)[Jose]: I’m not supporting the little girls selling stuff, buy it because they are adorable. No.[Brian]: Oh sure.[Jose]: But the cookies, I haven’t had a girl scout cookie in a while. I used to do the pinatas, but they don't’ do that anymore.[Brian]: What was that?[Jose]: It was a vanilla cookie with sprinkles. They were supposed to be like pinatas. They were colorful and had a glaze on them. I don’t know. They were dope. The peanut butter jawns are good. My mom would piss me off. She used to get like four boxes, and three of them would be Thin Mints.[Brian]: Yeah dude.[Jose]: One would be Samoa. No peanut butter ones.[Brian]: Samoa is a hot cookie.[Jose]: But yeah that doughnut was great. I did a peanut butter and jelly donut.[Brian]: I missed that one. That sounds awesome.[Jose]: I picked the Concord grapes off my girl’s dad’s place in Virginia. They have a Concord vine. Every other year it sprouts. We took like seven gallon buckets off. I made jelly from scratch. I injected the sh*t out of those things. Put some peanut butter cream on top. Boom. Done. Peanut butter and jelly.

Don’t you need something for jelly like that? Like pectin?

[Jose]: You do with certain ones, but with Concords the method to making it is weird. The skin itself has pectin in it. It’s a natural thickener. You pulverize the sh*t out of them, then you strain it. Then you cook that liquid with sugar. Once you get to the certain point where it’s supposed to be, it cools up and then it’s jelly. You don’t have to add anything. You can make strawberry jelly to get the same effect, but most things are made with pectin.

As far as donuts go, besides yours being the best, who else makes good donuts in Philly?

[Jose]: In Philly there was a place in the Northeast that used to do them. I couldn’t tell you the name of them anymore, which isn’t really f*cking helpful so that’s cool.[Brian]: (laughter)[Jose]: In Philly, really, WaWa donuts are the only thing I’m really ascustom to. There is a small German bakery in Croydon, which is way up. They used to do sticky buns and German style donuts. They were big donuts. Normal things but filling.[Brian]: What’s the best normal donut you’ve had, even if it’s outside of Philly.[Jose]: Hometown. Fresh Donuts is the name of it.

What’s your hometown?

[Jose]: Levittown, PA. It’s a sh*thole. I hate it. I’m glad I’m out. But the only good thing about that is South China Buffet and Fresh Donuts. Fresh Donuts was the go-to. We’d pull all nighters, and they opened up at like 4:45am. We’d be there at like 4:30. Chocolate milk. Donuts. Let’s go. If you were lucky they would have bear claws for fifty cents that were a day old.[Brian]: Wow.[Jose]: And they were still just as good.[Brian]: Wow.[Jose]: They were dope too. If you wanted certain ones, like, “hey I don’t want chocolate glaze on my Boston creme,” they’d be like, “yeah we got you.” And they would make a fresh one right there.

How long does it take to make a doughnut?

[Jose]: Two minutes to fry it.[Brian]: But it’s getting the bread?[Jose]: It’s making the dough. My dough I do a two-day step. I’ll make it and then I’ll proof it over night. Most of the time you’re supposed to proof it -- make the dough, proof it, and then proof it again. I put it in the walk-in and let it slow proof. So over night it gradually -- it’s like marinating slowly. The yeast is building up little by little. That’s the other thing with yeast too, is how much you let it chill. Ferment basically. If you want a super yeasty donut, let it go for a few days. The overnight slow rise gives it enough yeast that it’s just perfect and great.[Brian]: That’s true. That’s cool. I remember when I worked at a pizza shop years ago how you could make a batch of dough on Wednesday. It’s different. They would expand from the day you made them even in the walk-in days later.[Jose]: Yep. I used to do pizza dough too. Pizza dough and donut dough are basically the same thing. The difference is one is sweet and one is not.

Could someone go to their local pizza shop and buy dough balls to make doughnuts at home?

[Jose]: Probably. Don’t expect it to be like … I don’t know. It might be chewier I think. Some places use different types of yeast and different amounts of water. Siome of them if you mix your dough longer you’re agitating the gluten, so you might get a tighter dough. With donuts you don’t do that, so you might get a lighter, fluffy dough. You could, and honestly you could do it and make monkey bread. It’s not a f*cking donut, but it’s still awesome.[Brian]: And it saves you a lot of steps.[Jose]: It saves you like six hours of work before you get your product.[Brian]: That’s pretty legit.[Jose]: Maybe you can walk into your local donut shop and be like, “Yo. Let me buy a brick of dough.”[Brian]: (laughter)[Jose]: “Let me just buy some dough and make some doughnuts at home, and see what it’s like. Hook it up with a kilo and let’s go.”

Doughnut Crawl

There is no better way to experience the awesome doughnuts in your area then to do a doughnut crawl. Self-proclaimed doughnut expert Alex Colic did just that. He walked around Philadelphia and sampled a bunch of doughnuts.

Interview with Doughnut Aficionado Alex Colic

Below is the transcription of this interview from the podcast:[Brian]: Thank you for the doughnuts today.[Alex]: You are welcome, sir.[Brian]: Where did you get doughnuts from?[Alex]: McMillian’s in Westmont. Just a block or two away from Top Deck Games. Shout out Nick Coss.[Brian]: Yeah. Shout out Top Deck slash Card Titan.[Alex]: That’s right. That’s right. Doing big things over there. But McMillian’s is an old bakery that’s be around for 80-something years. Something like that. They’re legendary in South Jersey.[Brian]: Okay.[Alex]: They do it all. Make fresh breads. They make cakes. Make pies. They do the doughnuts. They do the pastries.[Brian]: Yeah the doughnuts were banging. I had -- it’s not a bear claw. What is it? What’s it called? The fluffy one.[Alex]: The crawler?[Brian]: Yeah. That was really good.[Alex]: And the chocolate bismark. It’s a cinnamon roll dipped in chocolate.[Brian]: Yeah it was sweet. Literally and figuratively.[Alex]: It’s like, “wow. This shouldn’t be this good.” But yeah they’re delicious.[Brian]: Yes. Thank you for that.[Alex]: My pleasure.

I wanted you to treat me to some good doughnuts because I heard that you went on a doughnut crawl. Like you are actually a season veteran of eating doughnuts in the tri-state area.

[Alex]: Yeah. Hashtag fat guy.[Brian]: (laughter)[Alex]: So Shannon, my girlfriend, I think it was our first half year of dating. I’m pretty sure the first year. She’s like, “I’m going to take you on a doughnut crawl for your birthday. We’re going to get your friends together and walk around Philly, then get doughnuts at like five different places.” I was like okay. That’s the best idea ever. So let’s start. She likes Beiler’s. I think everyone in the area should know. In the Reading Terminal Market. Amazing. Right next to the Pennsylvania Dutch Area, some people call it the Amish area or whatever. Amazing.[Brian]: They also opened a new location in University City. Like 37th and something, Chestnut or something like that. So if you hate going to Center City or Old City, that might be more reasonable.[Alex]: And they do the whole deal where they make them and you can watch?[Brian]: Yeah. And the office -- I always thought they got them from the Reading Terminal one. But the woman that picks them up lives closer to there, so that’s how I found out. I couldn’t taste the difference. That’s proof.[Alex]: That’s so good. So my birthday is in April, so it was a nice out. So we were just like, “Let’s go. Let’s walk a little bit.” She tired to do it so we didn’t have to drive. We walked about a mile and a half on the day.

We go to a place called Dottie’s after that. I think it’s a bakery. The thing was that it was closed for training.

[Brian]: What?[Alex]: Yeah (laughter). She was super bummed. She was like, “they should have said something on the website.” So you know, a bit of a downer. But whatever. We persevered.[Brian]: I think that’s the vegan joint too. I want to say that Mariposa, the food co-op in West Philly, Cedar Park Clark Park area. Think the baked goods that they have there are from Dottie’s. The name sounds familiar.[Alex]: So this is the first little snafu on our little adventure. But it’s okay.

It started strong.

[Alex]: Yep. It started strong. The next one was the Swiss Haus. It’s a bakery again. And they were in some list that she used to define great doughnut places to go. They were top 15 in the area. And it was around where we were at. She was like, “this is perfect.” We go there and they are like, “yeah we stopped making doughnuts.:[Brian]: (laughter)[Alex]: (laughter) Right. She’s like all apologetic. I’m like, “babe, we’re fine. There’s pastries here. There’s apple tarts here. We’re going to be okay.”[Brian]: We also already had doughnuts.[Alex]: Right.[Brian]: And we’re going to have more.[Alex]: Yeah. I’m not going to be disappointed for eating another other delicious pastry. So it’s fine. We get back on track after this. Now we still been meeting people along the way. Not everybody can meet us and do the whole thing. Some people meet here. Some people meet there. You know. It was such a great idea. Now we have about eight people or so and we’re going to go to Federal Doughnuts.[Brian]: Okay.[Alex]: Right. And if you haven’t been to Federal Doughnuts.

And I can’t imagine anyone in the area that’s listening that hasn’t been to Federal Doughnuts.

[Brian]: I can.[Alex]: Really?[Brian]: Well I’ve never been to the real locations. I finally tried their doughnuts at Whole Foods. The new banging Whole Foods in the Art Museum District has restaurant vendors inside the supermarket. They have like four kiosks that are full blown.[Alex]: So what did you think?[Brian]: They weren’t my favorite.[Alex]: What did you have?[Brian]: I forget what flavor I had. Maybe lavender.[Alex]: Yeah. That’s not going to be my go-to.[Brian]: Yeah that’s fair.[Alex]: So we get there -- and also fried chicken sandwiches and fried chicken.[Brian]: So this is my thing: I can’t get their chicken because they are called Federal Doughnuts. It was be like getting American food at a Chinese place.[Alex]: But it’s the only thing they make. You know? They make doughnuts and fried chicken.[Brian]: I know. I just can’t get past their name.[Alex]: You just can’t get past it?[Brian]: I can’t. Yeah.[Alex]: You got a block.[Brian]: I do.[Alex]: Well so we go in and it’s super hipster, like at the location we’re at. Lots of scarves and beards.[Brian]: But no one can change a tire?[Alex]: (laughter)[Brian]: (laughter)[Alex]: Look I could if you put a gun to my head.[Brian]: Yeah same.

I can sign up for triple A with the gun to my head.

[Alex]: Yo I just saved my buddy at work who’s car wouldn’t start and he lives in Jersey and we’re in Delaware, and I got him home with my triple A. And I was like, “come on, man, you’re an adult now. It’s time to get triple A.”[Brian]: (laughter)[Alex]: But at any rate I’m like, “alright I’ve never been there,” to Federal Doughnuts, and I say, “What are we going to get?” She’s like, “I want to try the guava poppyseed.” Now I think to myself: “that sounds super pretentious and ridiculous, and I’m not going to eat guava poppyseed.” I got chocolate cherry or something --[Brian]: Something basic?[Alex]: Yeah exactly. Brown sugar, which is delicious. They make them hot. Everyone’s hot. There’s not sitting around here. They are made to order. The guava poppy seed is made earlier or whatever. She tried it and she’s like, “This is so good.”“Give me a treat?”“Nah you’re going to get the last bite, because if you get some now you’re going to want half of it.”Sure enough she was right. She gave me the last bite and it was ridiculous. It was mind-blowing.

It really was a mind-blowing doughnut. Just one of those things that changes everything.

[Brian]: What made it so great?[Alex]: I guess the unexpectedly sweet guava with that poppyseed mix. It’s not a flavor you’re used to, and it’s delightful. I don’t know. The only word is “just the right amount of everything.” And I asked. I went to our friend Luke’s. And I stopped. They have a Federal Doughnuts like three blocks away. I stopped to get us doughnuts, and I asked for the guava poppyseed, and she says, “they’re not in season.” I’m like.”they’re not in season? Okay” She said, “guavas don’t grow year round.” I’m like, “alright. My bad.”[Brian]: (laughter)[Alex]: (laughter) So there is some of that pretentious things, but delicious never the lest.[Brian]: Ah man I was so close to having one of those. I remember that night you brought the Federal Doughnuts.[Alex]: Ah. You didn’t have any?[Brian]: I did. Was there a strawberry one?

Yep. I had the strawberry, the chocolate cherry, the brown sugar.

[Brian]: Well I was talking to Jose about this, and he was telling me that there are yeast doughnuts and cake doughnuts. And Federal Doughnuts is a cake doughnuts. I prefer the airiness of that crawler.[Alex]: Right. Right.[Brian]: Or a Beiler’s. And don’t get me wrong. If someone offers a Federal Doughnuts, I’m having one. But if both stands are next to each other, I would go to Beiler’s before Federal.[Alex]: Another great place -- I’m in South Jersey. I lived in Collingswood for eight years. That McMillians is right next to Collingswood. But there is a DiBartolo Bakery. They won the Food Network Halloween Cupcake Wars or whatever a couple years ago. So they are kind of getting a celebrity baker famous there. They make some great doughnuts, but they don’t make them in the quantity that McMillians does. They will make like three trays and you got to show up early. And they won’t be cream filled, but they’ll split them in half and just cover them, you know, fill them up with cream.[Brian]: Yeah.

And they are like a buck a piece. That’s bad news for a big fat guy.

[Brian]: (laughter)[Alex]: (laughter)[Brian]: I think like half the times I’ve hung out with you, you’ve had doughnuts for me. I want to say that the first time I tried those it was -- ah I don’t know.[Alex]: It might have been. I don’t know. I’ll stop by and I’m like -- well we’ve know each other for some years now.[Brian]: That sounds so familiar. Ah maybe it wasn’t you, but now I’m starting to think it was. I can’t remember. Someone has brought me doughnuts where they fill the doughnut for you. Like on demand. That blew my mind as an option.[Alex]: Yeah. They looked at me and go, “We can fill them for you.”“How much?”“No extra charge”[Brian]: That’s genius. Why doesn’t everyone make their doughnuts that way?[Alex]: Yeah, yeah. But I mean … of course I got them and my old landlord he got mad at me. “You should only go to McMilllians”, because he’s been an old-school South Jersey guy. I’m like, “I don’t know, man. It’s pretty good.”[Brian]: Yeah it’s hard to lose with sugar for sure. So wait, did the tour end at Federal Doughnuts.[Alex]: Yeah. Let me double check. I think it did.[Brian]: So it was top four?[Alex]: Yeah. It was top four.[Brian]: That’s still pretty good though. So the guava poppy seed was far and away the best.[Alex]: Like I said a game changer.[Brian]: So what’s your go-to when you go to Beiler’s. What did you get there?

I love their mocha cream.

[Brian]: Whoa.[Alex]: Or cappuccino cream. Something like that. I love those coffee flavored doughnuts. It’s kind of sublime, you know?[Brian]: Yeah.[Alex]: It’s kind of everything you want. It’s sweet, but it’s got that coffee kick. But it’s I don’t know, man. It’s peanut butter chocolate. Any type of apple filled walnut. I love any apple, walnut, caramel thing.[Brian]: Yeah.[Alex]: So good.[Brian]: I usually get, my go-to one from them, has this green frosting on it. I can’t remember if it’s key lime or pistachio. Both flavors I enjoy. I eat it probably once a month. I still don’t can’t tell you which flavor it is. (laughter)[Alex]: That’s great.

I’m not sure how to feel about that, but it’s the truth.

[Alex]: It’s the delicious flavor.[Brian]: Yeah it’s the delicious one.[Alex]: Key lime are great. Quick shout out to New Castle Farmers Market. They have a Pennsylvania Dutch section as well, and they do doughnuts. And they are ridiculous. If you ever get down that way, they are ridiculous. They’re cappuccino, and their apple walnut are out of control. Just out of control. Like I can make myself sick. (laughter)[Brian]: (laughter)

Philly Food Porn Recommends Duck Doughnuts

If you want to try one of the best doughnuts, head on over to Duck Doughnuts. For more amazing recommendations, be sure to visit and follow Philly Food Porn.

Podcast Show Notes: Links and References

Where to find the best doughnut in Philadelphia.

Pastry chef Jose Ramos gives our listeners some key tips about the best doughnuts. Learn how to make them & how to spot them.

Brian Durkin is on Twitter and Instagram.

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