Dessert Fail: Raspberry Beignets from The Little Owl

"These were quite possibly the toughest doughnuts I had ever tasted."


After an enormous burger lunch at The Little Owl, my dining companion wasn't "in the mood" for dessert—or so he claimed, but really I think he just couldn't handle any more food. Apparently he didn't know that the answer to "Dessert?" is always "Yes, please!" when you're dining with me.

I passed over the sorbets and ice creams, and went straight for the raspberry beignets ($9). I imagined fluffy, piping hot dough with oozy raspberry jam seeping out, or maybe even a raspberry curd. (I got a bit carried away thinking about the possibilities.) This also got me to thinking, why isn't there more curd in the world? Yes, life's big questions often come to me when I'm eating.

Back to the beignets. After an interminable fifteen minutes, I finally received my plate of four beignets with a somewhat sad-looking plop of Nutella. After waiting a couple of moments for the freshly fried fritters to cool down, I took a bite and chewed. And chewed. These were quite possibly the toughest doughnuts I had ever tasted. As for the filling? Cooked raspberries had released their inner juices—and not in a good way. The steam created an excess of space within the doughnut, sadly devoid of fruit, cream, jam, or anything fulfilling. I managed to eliminate one beignet by smothering it in Nutella, but the rest were sadly left behind as I moved on to get some gelato nearby. Farewell, and good riddance!

The Little Owl

90 Bedford Street, New York NY 10014 (near Grove Street; map) 212-741-4695