Once upon a time – 7th June 1938, to be precise – a kind doctor named Morgan Prett picked up 8 dozen doughnuts on way to work. Work, that is, treating wounded soldiers at a World War I base. He gave every soldier that he treated one doughnut and for this generous (understatement) act, Lt. Gen. Samuel Geary decided to hold a fundraiser wherein every wounded soldier and needy person would get a doughnut among other things. Later joined by The Salvation Army, this ‘doughnut giveaway’ caught speed in other countries as well during the war. From feeding soldiers at the The Salvation Army Huts to being our pet sweet snack, doughnuts have come a long way and in every righteous way deserve a day of their own!
Here are 10 facts about this round fluffy dough for you to add to your mental archive as you binge on your favourite doughnuts!
- More than 10 billion doughnuts are made each year in the U.S. Not including any other country. Nope, not even you Canada.
- The top 10 doughnut brands in the U.S. alone produced $1.008 billion in sales revenue in 2013!
- The Dutch are credited with bringing donuts to the U.S. in the 1800s. They were first called “olykoeks”, or oily cakes. Not exactly a drool-inducing name but apparently, the world of marketing hadn’t become important.
- If you think the Dutch name was less than appetizing, the French version is purely inane. In France, donuts are called “pets de nonne” or “nun’s farts.” Really? Wish we had been there when this crazy moniker was formed. We wonder what’s the real (smelly) story here!
- We know there are some food-based names out there like Gwyneth Paltrow’s daughter Apple or the baseball player Coco Crisp. But, did you know that 13 people in the U.S. are actually named Donut (yes, as a first name)?
- Of course, there are donut shops in basically every city and most towns. However, Boston has the most donut shops per person – one for every 2,480 people. That’s more than the amount of MSG in Maggi!
- While the traditional spelling of the tasty treat is ‘doughnut’, the Dunkin Donuts chain popularized the ‘donut’ version for obvious reasons! Damn, we thought it was the U.K. and U.S. at war again!
- Krispy Kreme doughnuts are kosher, which means that they conform to the Jewish Dietary Law. Hallelujah!
- Doughnuts might have been an accident! No one quite knows who first thought of using boiling oil to cook pastry, but one story traces it all back to a cow in colonial times, which apparently kicked over a pot of oil onto a mixture of pastry. That’s one Cow foodies will truly worship!
- If all the doughnuts sold during 20 years of National Doughnut Week were stacked on top of each other, they would reach into space. Guess now we know why E.T. didn’t feel the need to come back!