Cider doughnut season is back, which means it's time to once again to snatch up as many as we can, then fall into a slump of disappointment when we call, "right, these don't actually taste like cider."
For what it's worth, I fully endorse this cycle. But I'm also interested in breaking it. Enter Breezy Hill Orchard. Not only does this upstate orchard make excellent cider; they also make cider doughnuts that really do taste like cider.
The doughnuts, sold in half dozen increments for a dollar a piece, bear a light sheen of oil and a crust that could stand to be more crisp. But these are cider doughnuts made upstate and trucked down to the city, not fresh ones from the corner shop—this I can forgive, a reality of getting doughnuts miles away from their source rather than straight from the orchard.
The real treasure is inside: a moist crumb (that stays that way for a couple days) with a hint of spice, a blast of apple flavor, and intriguing notes of caramel and tartness. It's a doughnut with all the complexities of great apple cider, more fruit than cinnamon sugar. Longtime cider doughnut fans who've dealt with doughy disappointment: these may be your ticket.
Breezy Hill Orchard hits the Union Square Greenmarket on Wednesdays and Saturdays. You can also find them at markets in Inwood, Sunnyside, Park Slope, on Cortelyou Road, and other locations.