The Donut – History, Recipes, And Lore from Boston to Berlin, Michael Krondl

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The love for the donut in the United States is longstanding and deep-rooted. Gourmet donut shops have popped up in trendy neighborhoods across the country and high-end restaurants are serving trios of donuts for dessert, while Dunkin’ Donuts, Krispy Kreme, and Tim Hortons have amassed a devoted following. In this captivating guide to the delectable dessert, culinary historian, chef, and donut lover Michael Krondl has put together an entertaining social history of the donut throughout the ages and from around the world.

Publisher: Chicago Review Press, Jun 2014

Reviewer: Stephanie Jade Sleaford.

Krondl’s dedication to the donut offers everything that a sweet treat fan could wish for. From an account of donuts through the ages to recipes you’ll want to rush home and try, Krondl arguably has all of the bases covered.

‘The Donut’ is not just collection of recipes interspersed with the occasional interesting fact but instead is focused upon telling the story of the long since favoured treat and offers up just a carefully selected baker’s dozen worth of recipes to try at home.

I’ll admit that as a reader I always find that there’s a certain danger with non-fiction – I want to learn something but at the same time I don’t want to be bored; it’s a tough job for any writer attempting this genre. Yet food historian, Krondl and his donut inspired journey across four continents certainly left me wanting more. From donut like treats in ancient Greece to the sugary snack we know and love today, Krondl’s account of the donut, the cultural differences, and why they are so universally accepted, is informative yet entertaining. The engaging read can be credited to Krondl’s light hearted writing style and effortlessly guides the reader through his journey.

As for the donut recipes? They’re simple enough for even a baking novice like me to achieve. Whilst I might have been previously under the impression that donuts were reserved for more accomplished bakers, (we’ll blame ‘The Great British Bake Off’ for featuring donuts in their advanced dough week for that), I was surprised at how easy they were to make. Of course having a sweet tooth meant the hardest part was actually choosing which batch were my favourite but in the end I had to settled for the ‘Baked Red Velvet Donuts with Vanilla Bean Icing’.

Overall Krondl’s latest offering is a delight with a perfect mix of entertaining non-fiction and try at home recipes. I was thoroughly impressed and wouldn’t hesitate recommended this to friends or even give as a gift to someone with an equally sweet tooth.


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