Dough Nuts, Crullers (1802)

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Wed Jan 12 08:03:29 UTC 2005


    1. A small spongy cake made of dough (usually sweetened and spiced), and fried or boiled in lard. Freq. made in the shape of a thick ring.

  1809 W. IRVING Knickerb. (1861) 90 An enormous dish of balls of sweetened dough, fried in hog's fat, and called doughnuts, or olykoeks. 1847 THOREAU in Atlantic Monthly June (1892) 757 The window was..the size of an oblong doughnut, and about as opaque. 1861 R. F. BURTON City of Saints 104 note, The Dough-nut is properly speaking, a small roundish cake made of flour, eggs, and sugar, moistened with milk and boiled in lard. 1870 HAZLITT Brand's Pop. Antiq. I. 48 At Baldock, Herts, the children call..[Shrove Tuesday] Dough-nut Day, from the small cakes fried in brass skillets over the fire with hog's lard.
"Doughnuts are deep-fried cakes with a long European history and roots in still earlier Middle Eastern cuisine. They were introduced to America by the Dutch in New Newtherland as oliekoecken (oil cakes or fried cakes)...The were eaten during the Dutch Christmas season...and for special occasions throughout the year. Once in the New World, the Dutch replaced their frying oil with the preferred lard (far more available here), as it produced a tender and greaseless crust. The other ethnic groups brought their own doughnut variations. The Pennsylvania Dutch and the Moravians who settled in North Carolina made fastnachts on Shrove Tuesday, and the French established beignets in New Orleans. Ultimately, the English American cooks adopted them as well. By 1845 doughtnuts appeared in American Cookbooks as staples, and the weekly Saturday baking (breads, cakes, and ies) included doughtnut frying. In this same antebellum period, two changes in technology contributed to a basic alteration of the doughnut. Chemical leavening (notably baking powder) was substituted for yeast, producing a more cakelike and less breadlike product. In the same era inexpensive tin doughnut cutters with holes were manufactured commercially and sold widely."
---Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America, Andrew F. Smith [Oxford University Press:New York] 2004 (p. 408)

[app. a. Du. cruller, f. crullen to curl: cf. EFris. kruller curl, paper-curl, LG. kroll-koken wafer-cakes.]

    A cake cut from dough containing eggs, butter, sugar, etc., twisted or curled into various shapes, and fried to crispness in lard or oil.

  1818 W. IRVING Sketch-Bk., Leg. Sleepy Hollow, The doughty dough-nut..the crisp and crumbling cruller. 1866 HOWELLS Venet. Life vi, A species of cruller, fried in oil, which has all seasons for its own. 1890 G. RUDMANI Royal Baker (N.Y.) 8 [Recipe].


10,000 years. To earn as much money as a baseball player. 10,000 years of work. 10,000 years of parking tickets.

My food etymology earnings will never make me enough money to actually buy a single doughnut or cruller, but here goes. The origin of two great American foods.

Paper: Commercial Advertiser.;   Date: 1802-12-13;   Vol: VI;   Iss: 1610;   Page: [2];

By G. & R. WAITE, price 75 cents, handsomely
bound in red, for the pocket
An Appendix, containing receipts for making Pumpkin-Pie, Dough Nuts, Sausages, Blood Puddings, Cranberry-Tarts, Peach Sweetmeats, Pear do. Quince do. Green Gage do.; to pickle Peppers and Beets; to make Maple Suage, Maple Molasses, Maple Beer, Spruce Beer out of the essence, do. out of Shred Spruce; to make Pork-Pie, Bath Pudding, Pot-Pie, Short Gingerbread, Wharfles, Crullers; methods of raising Turkies, method of destroying the putrid smell which meat acquires during hot weather, &c. &c.; together with a Bill of Fare for every month in the year.

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