National Doughnut Day falls on the first Friday of June, and celebrating it doesn’t take a lot of imagination. It’s the perfect excuse to indulge in one of America’s most iconic confections.
Unlike a lot of food-related holidays, National Doughnut Day actually has some historical legitimacy. It got its start in Chicago in 1938 to raise funds for The Salvation Army and to honor the Army’s female volunteers who served doughnuts to soldiers during World War I. (Take that, National Chocolate Covered Raisin Day.)
This year, every DUNKIN’ DONUTS will be offering a free classic doughnut with any beverage purchase, but Long Island abounds in doughnut dispensaries, newfangled and old-fashioned.
In the newfangled corner, we’ve got:
DOUGHOLOGY (45 Atlantic Ave., Lynbrook, 516-341-0882)
Watch your doughnut as it enters and exits the fryer, then customize its decoration with one of dozens of dry toppings (nuts, sprinkles, crumbs, Trix, coconut), fruits, jams, sauces, drizzles, whipped cream and bacon. This is the home of the much-ballyhooed rainbow doughnut, made with three layers of colored dough and surmounted by a rainbow cookie.
DOUGH HUT (891 W. Beech St., Long Beach, 516-432-1400)
This funky doughnuterie makes dozens of varieties, from classic (cinnamon) to imaginative (pistachio) to out-there (Fruity Pebbles). But the s’mores doughnut has emerged as a customer favorite. It’s a cake doughnut topped with chocolate icing and then marshmallow fluff and graham cracker crumbs.
DOUGHNUT BLISS (Kitchen Co-Op, 213 Broadway, Amityville, 631-397-0197)
Owner-baker Karen Klein, longtime fan of Doughnut Plant and Dough Doughnuts, was inspired by the Manhattan and Brooklyn shops to open a Saturday-only pop-up, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Kitchen Co-Op, a commercial kitchen. She makes about a dozen varieties, such as vanilla glazed, maple bacon, peanut butter and jelly or toasted almond honey. Order ahead via Facebook.
SPIGA BAKERY (2685 Merrick Rd., Bellmore, 516-557-2688)
Luca Caravello goes way beyond glazed at this 6-year-old Italian bakery. Favorites include the cream pie doughnut, filled with Italian custard and topped with ganache, and the banana-Nutella doughnut, filled with banana-flavored Italian custard, iced with Nutella, then drizzled with more Nutella. A frequent special is the inis, a Sicilian zeppola that’s rolled in sugar and breadcrumbs before it’s filled with cannoli cream.
And in the old-fashioned corner:
HOUSE OF DONUTS (95 Broadway, Hicksville, 516-433-4606)
The Kefalas family has been frying up doughnuts at this Hicksville institution since 1971 and little has changed since then—not the décor, and not freshly made renditions of timeless classics: glazed, crullers (regular and marble), Boston cream, jelly, chocolate cake and more.
STEINER’S PASTRY SHOP (432 Plandome Rd., Manhasset, 516-627-2201)
Since 1979, Austrian-born Franz Steiner has presided over Steiner’s Pastry Shop, a magnet for lovers of traditional European sweets. But he also excels in that most American confection: the doughnut. Nothing fancy here, just classic doughnuts dusted with powdered sugar or cinnamon sugar. They’re tender, full-flavored and not too sweet. Available plain or filled with black raspberry preserves that Steiner imports from Europe.
DUDEK POLISH BAKERY (1635 Great Neck Rd., Copiague, 631-841-3465 and 1905 Great Neck Rd., Copiague, 631-789-1945)
Co-owner Krystyna Dudkiewicz wouldn’t say anything about the dough for these rich and tender Polish paczki other than that it was “top secret.” But she spilled about the fillings: fruit marmalades imported from Poland. In addition to cherry and blueberry, Dudek fills a doughnut with a marmalade of white rose petals.
B&M PRESTANO BAKERY (593 Rte. 25A, Rocky Point, 631-849-3475)
After scoring with chocolate-covered bacon, bacon brownies and bacon cupcakes, this 7-year-old bakery took the logical next step: maple-bacon doughnuts. The doughnuts are dipped in a glaze made with real maple syrup, then topped, generously, with applewood-smoked bacon. “It tastes like pancakes and syrup with bacon,” said co-owner Barbara Prestano Henry. “A perfect breakfast.”
FRITZSCHE’S BAKERY (56 Main St., Sayville, 631-589-0586)
Sayville has been savoring this old-school bakery since Kurt Fritzsche’s father, Georg, opened it in 1926. The doughnuts are legendary, and for good reason. The moist, airy French crullers are made not with yeast dough but with egg-leavened choux dough and then glazed with either chocolate or vanilla. On Thursdays, customers line up for the fragrant apple-cinnamon doughnuts.