Thursday, April 26, 2012

Doughnuts Around the World

Madrileños eat churros around the clock, but many cultures have their own love affairs with sizzling deepfried dough. Whether they are called doughnuts, fritters, beignets, or sopapillas, they are often eaten as breakfast food or sweet treats at street fairs and markets.
Chocolatería San Ginés inexpensive
Pasadizo de San Ginés 5; +34 913 656 546 Neat rows of cups and saucers on a marble bar greet customers at this institution beloved by generations of Madrileños. At midnight, dawn, and noon, San Ginés serves the thick chocolate and lightly crisp churros against which all others are judged.
Chocolatería Valor inexpensive
Calle Postigo de San Martín 7;
Founded in 1881, Valor is one of Spain’s most famous makers of premium chocolate, used for baking, cooking, and confectionery. The company’s signature bonbonería (sweets and bakery store), just a few steps from Puerta del Sol, serves rich hot chocolate with unusually large, unfluted churros.
Maestro Churrero inexpensive
Calle Atocha 19;
This popular churrería traces its roots to a rolling cart from 1902 that allowed a Madrileño named Don Florencio to cater to theater-goers. Five generations down the line, his successors continue to warm hungry breakfast patrons and revelers needing a sweet bite after hours of tapas and drinks.
Deep-fried pastries are as integral to Valencian cuisine as paella. Street vendors even sell hot chocolate and pumpkin buñuelos (a small bun similar to a churro) during the March carnival of Las Fallas (the Fires).
Estación del Norte inexpensive
Calle Xàtiva 24

Whether travelers are arriving or departing, they can always count on a quick pick-me-up of toasty churros and hot chocolate from the gleaming stainless steel outdoor kiosks that operate from dawn to midnight in front of Valencia’s Art Nouveau train station in the heart of the city. Horchatería El Siglo inexpensive
Plaza Santa Catalina 11, +34 963 918 466
Founded in 1836, this venerable café is celebrated for its milky horchata drink made from chufa, or tiger nuts. Cool and refreshing, it is usually served with churros or buñuelos (cheese doughnuts) – which staff often cook outdoors to attract customers, as the aromas are virtually irresistible.
Horchatería Santa Catalina
Plaza Santa Catalina 6;
Decorated in classic Valencian painted tiles, this rival to El Siglo is acclaimed for its hot chocolate, often ordered with churros. A larger sweet bread called a farton, which lacks the fluting of a churro and is sometimes glazed, usually accompanies horchata.


The United States spawned the sweetened fried dough known as the doughnut – a spherical or ring-shaped variation on the churro. But the country’s many immigrant groups have not forgotten their own ethnic variations on deep-fried sweet fritters.
Doughnut Plant inexpensive
379 Grand Street, New York, New York;
This artisanal doughnut shop in the Lower East Side of Manhattan has become a confectionery cult, in part because it incorporates fresh seasonal fruits such as strawberries and blueberries into the glazes. Weekend lines stretch out the door.
Dunkin’ Donuts inexpensive
543 Southern Artery, Quincy, Massachusetts;
Dunkin’ Donuts opened its first shop in Quincy, Massachusetts, in 1950, featuring fresh coffee and a doughnut with a small handle, allowing it to be dunked. The chain has since spread the American doughnut – in 52 varieties, including the perennially favorite plain, glazed, and jelly-filled types – to 31 countries around the world.
Morro Castle inexpensive
2500 Northwest Seventh Street, Miami, Florida;
(305) 642 4747
This classic 1950s drive-in is known for its Cuban sandwiches and fritas (burgers) made with a mixture of ground beef and chorizo sausage. But many locals also believe that Morro Castle serves the best traditional Spanish-style churros and hot chocolate in Miami.
Spudnut Shop inexpensive
228 Williams Boulevard, Richland, Washington; A family-run bakery in the same location for more than 60 years, Spudnut uses a combination of potato flour and wheat flour to produce unusually airy yeast-raised and cake doughnuts. The family also bakes a line of spudnut muffins and cakes.
Café du Monde moderate
1039 Decatur Street, New Orleans, Louisiana;
A stalwart of the city’s French Quarter, this marketplace café creates legendary beignets – high and puffy squares of fried dough covered in powdered sugar. They are served in orders of three to accompany coffee given a nutty, slightly acrid taste by roasted chicory.
Maria’s New Mexican Kitchen
555 West Cordova Road, Santa Fe, New Mexico;
This restaurant is justly famed for its authentic northern New Mexican cooking, based on fresh and dried chili peppers. The perfect conclusion to the hot and spicy courses comes in the form of soothing, honey-drizzled sopapillas – small, hollow, triangular “pillows” of sweet, fried dough.
Sra. Martinez moderate
4000 Northeast Second Avenue, Miami, Florida;
Diners at this stylish bistro in a former post office in the Design District understand that churros are no longer just street food. For dessert, chef Michelle Bernstein serves churros with a chocolate dipping sauce that she spikes with cayenne pepper.


It is said that when the Spanish explorer Hernán Cortés arrived in Mexico in 1519, the Aztecs mistook him for an incarnation of their god Quetzalcoatl, and served him up a feast including xocoatl , a cocoa-bean drink. The Spanish kept the popular drink’s ingredients a secret for 100 years, and eventually returned the favor by introducing Mexicans to the pleasures of churros dipped in thickened hot chocolate.
Cafe San Agustín inexpensive
Calle San Francisco 21, San Miguel de Allende;
+52 5154 9102
Both churros and chocolate at this popular café come in three degrees of sweetness: Spanish, French, and Mexican. The sweetest is Mexican, and it is spiced with the brassy, bright flavor of the papery Mexican canela, or cinnamon.
Churrería El Moro inexpensive
Calle Lázaro Cárdenas 42, Mexico City;
+52 5512 0896
Even the bespangled mariachi musicians from nearby Plaza Garibaldi patronize this 1935 landmark churrería for bags of churros doused with grainy sugar and the specialty hot chocolate, which is frothed with carved wooden molinillos (whisks) and served up in earthenware jugs.


Café culture is central to the Argentine capital, and Porteños (the inhabitants of Buenos Aires) often treat their favorite cafés as second living rooms – places to entertain friends and even conduct business over plates of churros and cups of hot chocolate.
La Giralda inexpensive
1453 Avenida Corrientes, Buenos Aires;
+54 11 4371 3846
This erstwhile hangout for Argentine intellectuals and theater-goers is the most famous of the cluster on Avenida Corrientes. It caters to the Porteño sweet tooth by filling its churros with chocolate cream or with dulce de leche, the city’s signature milk caramel. Early risers and clubbers on the way home compete for morning tables.
Café Tortoni moderate
825 Avenida de Mayo, Buenos Aires;
Possibly the oldest café in Argentina, the historic and atmospheric Tortoni has been an integral part of Porteño life since 1858. A long-time favorite of politicians, intellectuals, and artists, its cigar-shaped, thick, and somewhat crunchy churros are best enjoyed with a submarino – a cup of hot milk served with a bar of dark chocolate (the “submarine”) which melts when dipped.

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