OK so I mentioned yesterday that there's in fact two new doughnuts to grace the Greggs summer range. The banoffee doughnut didn't hit the mark but I didn't have huge expectations from the rainbow doughnut in the first place (given my previous experiences with Greggs' rings*). The two friendly girls in Greggs Hereford however were quick to sing the praises of the new summer addition though, so I tried to refrain from judging it before actually taking a bite.
"If you like something that looks AND tastes good, then look no further than our rainbow doughnut.
A soft ring doughnut is coated with raspberry flavour fondant and finished with multi coloured decoration."
It's a very pretty doughnut, I'll give Greggs that. Although if you want to keep yours that way I'd suggest that you ask them not to put it in a bag in the shop, or else most of the icing will stick itself to the bag!
The dough was slightly softer than yesterday's banoffee doughnut, but it was still a lot denser than the Krispy Kreme ring. It also lacked the sweetness of Krispy Kreme's dough, which may make it more preferable to you if you find the glazed doughnuts too cloying, but to me it just tasted bland.
As for the raspberry topping, it was very mild in flavour. Think of a stickier version of the toppings you find on raspberry finger buns and you'll get the gist. The trouble is, those buns also tend to have a jammy centre -and without that the doughnut was insipid. Yesterday I said that KK could do with some doughnut filling training from Greggs, well today it turns out that Greggs could do with the training from KK on how to make a topping flavourful. After all, the shimmery raspberry topping on the (ridiculously under-filled) PB&J doughnut was delicious.
Doughnut week is very much down to one of you lot. Dan, if you're reading this, I'm not sure whether to thank you or cuss you. You see, Dan brought the release of Greggs' new range to my attention last week...not long after I had realised that I would soon be in the proximity of a Krispy Kreme store (and would be making the most of the opportunity to stock up). His prompt also fell after a conversation with the talented Heather (at The Tandem Bakery) about a very exciting doughnut that she was going to make this Wednesday (just gone) and I just knew I couldn't resist that one either. That brought the running total to 5, so why not go utterly doughnut doolally and get the two new Greggs offerings too? Especially as one of them was banoffee.
The new sweet menu was released yesterday and features lemon shortbread, toffee apple cookies, as well as the duo of doughnuts.
"Soft ball doughnut topped with caramel icing with a banana flavoured filling."
The new filled doughnuts come in at 90p each, a damn site cheaper than Krispy Kremes, but more expensive than standard jammy doughnuts. They looked as pretty, if not more attractive, than Krispy Kremes too.
Slicing mine in half revealed an abundant pocket of pale mousse. Perhaps Greggs should offer Krispy Kreme some training on how to adequately fill a doughnut.
However, having had so many Krispy Kremes this week, it was extremely evident to me who reigns supreme when it comes to the dough. Even after freezing and defrosting the KKs they were much fluffier in texture than the Greggs doughnuts, with a sweeter flavour throughout. In contrast, Greggs dough felt heavy and breadlike, though it was still admittedly enjoyable.
The banana mousse was entirely artificial in flavour, and although it was reminiscent of foam banana sweets, the aftertaste was slightly chemically. I wish Greggs had thought to inject a little toffee sauce into the centre too, because although the icing was caramel flavoured, the synthetic banana was the far more prominent of the two flavours and so to me it wasn't really true to the classic dessert.
I did however enjoy the little crunchy balls on top, which reminded me of the Muller Crunch Corners. Sure it would have been nice to have some digestive crumbs (as per a banoffee pie) but I guess they'd have gone soggy and so I think Greggs might have made a wise choice.
To be honest, I probably won't bother with this doughnut again. Hats off to Greggs thought for constantly innovating their range (as opposed to KKs barely veiled attempts to disguise their rereleases as new products).
The new Krispy Kremes have been a mixed bag thus far. They had so much potential but despite the fact that I bought the new range from a Krispy Kreme store (inside the Birmingham Selfridges) they've not really delivered on the filling. Fortunately the final doughnut in the Taste of America range can't really disappoint in that respect, so I found myself hoping that the new Pecan Pie ring would deliver on the flavour front.
"Hand-dipped in maple icing and sprinkled with pecans and white choc flavoured drizzle."
Having never had pecan pie I can't really comment on this doughnut's likeness to the classic American dessert, although the lack of pastry suggests that it's not particularly pie-y*
It was beautifully soft and covered in Krispy Kreme's classic glaze -which always has and always will be a winner in my book! There was also a strong maple flavour which worked wonderfully well, delivering a rich depth of flavour that I simply adored -but then I do love Maple syrup. A little crunchiness came from the nuts on top, although they were chopped up so small that you'd be hard pressed to distinguish exactly what kind of nuts they were. As per the New York Cheeseake Krispy Kreme, the white chocolate drizzle wasn't white chocolate at all; instead made from "Sugar, Palm Oil, Whey Powder (Milk), & Emulsifer: Soya Lecithin." Pssht.
Then it dawned on me. This wasn't a new doughnut at all. This was just the Maple Crunch with some pecans scattered on top and some fake white chocolate sauce. What a cop out Krispy Kreme! It was scrummy, and my favourite of the 'new' doughnuts, but really Krispy Kreme? Can't we have some of these exciting flavours from across the world....
Without a shadow of a doubt, the best Krispy Kreme I've ever had was one of their Reese's peanut butter doughnuts. The best doughnut I've ever had? The Tandem Bakery's PB&J. Therefore it should come as no surprise that I was super excited to see that Krispy Kreme have re-released their Reese's Peanut Butter & Jelly doughnuts as part of their new American range, though this time it has a new raspberry gloss. In fact I'd have been tempted to make the 46 mile round trip purely to get my grubby mits on the pb&j Krispy Kreme last Monday (when the range was released) had it not been for the fact that my vehicle is still off the road and that I'd already planned a trip to Birmingham on the Saturday to meet the lovely Sian.
"Filled with Reese's Peanut Butter & Raspberry filling, hand-dipped in a sparkling raspberry flavoured gloss and topped with peanut butter chips and peanut butter drizzle."
It was even glittery! I've heard that glittery food tastes on average 1467&9x better than non-shimmery food, so I felt it was worth the hefty £2.20 price tag. Feel free to gulp if you like.
The best thing about the Reese's Krispy Kreme was the ample peanut butter filling. Sweet with a slight salinity, it hit the spot and made me grin from ear to ear (after I'd finished smacking my lips of course).
FFS. It was only yesterday that I mentioned Krispy Kreme's infamously unreliable filling skills. This had got to be a joke right? Surely I'd just cut into it wonkily*.
Apparently not. There had got to be a maximum of half a teaspoon of peanut butter and half a teaspoon jam in that off centre nugget. I could've cried. It's a huge shame because the single mouthful that contained the filling was delicious. In the end I retrieved my jar of Skippy from the cupboard and made my own Krispy Kreme - something you shouldn't have to resort to when spending £2.20 on a doughnut (the equivalent of 11 supermarket jam doughnuts).
On the plus side, the glittery topping was full of flavour. The raspberry worked really well, but be warned, it's very sticky and therefore only advisable to eat when you're near a sink to wash your hands after. I'd have liked to have seen a few more of the peanut butter chips too. Hell, it would've been nice to have some kind of pb in the doughnut.
In the aftermath of reeses-pb&j-donut-gate I sent an email to KK, including the above images, who replied and said...
46 miles for a replacement? You've got to be kidding...
The doughnut I had: 2/10
What I imagine a properly filled pb&j KK would score: 10/10.
Is it worth the gamble though? You decide. *new word alert!
Day two of the Doughnut week brings you a review of the NY Cheesecake inspired Krispy Kreme. Now if you've been reading this blog for a while you'll know just how much I love a good cheesecake, but NY cheesecake? Not so much. Give me lemon, chocolate, chocolate orange, dulce de leche, strawberry donut, or speculoos cheesecakes (to name just a few) any day; but vanilla and sour cream? Nah, you're alright. That said, I'd heard good things about this new doughnut from the American chain, so looked forward to trying it.
'Filled with Kreme Cheese, hand-dipped in vanilla icing and sprinkled with biscuit crumb and white choc flavoured drizzle.'
Now the white chocolate topping didn't taste of white chocolate, and taking a look at the ingredients (Sugar, Palm Oil, Whey Powder (Milk), Emulsifer: Soya Lecithin) that's unsurprising. Why don't you use real white chocolate Krispy Kreme? Especially when you're charging a small fortune for each doughnut? Krispy Kreme's are renowned for being unpredictable when it comes to the amount of filling they contain, but this particular doughnut contained a respectable amount of 'Kreme Cheese'.
There was a slight tang to the flavour, and it was certainly different to their standard Kreme, but it wasn't 'shut-the-front-door' amazing. I did however enjoy it, and the sour edge helped to combat the resounding sweetness. As usual, the dough was beautifully soft and fluffy. The biscuit crumbs were also a welcome touch, helping to deliver the cheesecake element, however I have a bone to pick with Krispy Kreme.
That, ladies and gents, is the American Krispy Kreme NY cheesecake doughnut! Why can't ours look like that? Even the PR photo of the British version doesn't look as promising, although at least my doughnut did pose similarities to the picture below!
Doughnut lovers, this week of reviews is for you! Not a fan? See you next Monday... This week I'll be reviewing a different doughnut everyday, and today's post kicks off with one of the brand new 'Taste of America' Krispy Kremes. In the past couple of weeks the American company has released teasers on social media about the possible new flavours, and I guessed correctly with two of them (pb&j and pecan pie) but failed to think that Krispy Kreme would release a rocky road. Surely Mississippi Mud Pie would be more apt? Anyway, I present to you the new Rocky Road Doughnut...
"Filled with toffee & mallow filling, hand-dipped in chocolate icing and topped with biscuit crumb, chocolate drops & toffee drizzle."
The doughnut was as soft as I hoped it would be, although two chocolate drops was a pretty poor effort Krispy Kreme. Slicing the ball in half revealed a fairly generous pocket of toffee sauce... but I thought it was meant to be toffee and mallow?
The toffee sauce was quite good, tasting like a slightly thicker toffee ice cream sauce. It was of course extremely sweet though, and combined with the chocolate icing made for a sickly doughnut. I found that the little bit of Mallow offered very little in the way of flavour, and ended up being a little redundant. The biscuit crumb was also good, but again there wasn't much of it. As expected, the chocolate icing wasn't the best quality, but at least it did deliver a chocolatey element. My biggest bug bear was that this wasn't really a rocky road doughnut. I mean, the appeal of rocky road is surely the combination of textures? Seeing as there can't have been more than a teaspoonful of biscuit crumbs on the top there wasn't the contrast that I'd hoped for going on here. Really, it was a chocolate and toffee doughnut with a little bit of biscuit... perhaps Krispy Kreme should rename it the Millionaire's doughnut. Actually, that sounds rather good. 7/10
It's time for another review of a sugar-less sweet treat courtesy of Sweets Without. This time I was sent a pack of the :Diablo Cappuccino & Cream sweets. As a fan of the ALDI s/f coffee sweets I was really looking forward to trying :Diablo's version, which are sweetened with isomalt.
:Diablo instantly won extra points from the packaging. The biggest problem with ALDI's packs is that they often tip over in my handbag. I can testify to the fact that sweets are far less appetising when you have to pick lint off them. Instead the Diablo sweets are individually wrapped which makes them perfect for picking up a couple at a time to keep you going for a few hours.
The sweets are also fairly large in size, a little bigger but a similar shape to Werthers Originals. The first flavour that greeted me was a milky, latte-esque flavour, which subsided fairly quickly to a buttery, toffee flavour with a hint of coffee. True to their name they're creamy little sweets, and more so than the ALDI versions.
However, there's another big bonus to the Diablo sweets though: their size and shape means that each pastille lasts an extraordinary amount of time. Normally I'm a boiled sweet cruncher; I get bored all too easily and end up giving into the temptation to put pressure on them and then they're gone before I know it. Each of the :Diablo sweets lasted a good seven or eight minutes before I crumbled -or should that say crunched?
Whilst I think that ALDI deliver a more prominent coffee flavour with their sugar-free cappuccino sweets,, the size and packaging of these :Diablo sweets actually makes them a better option for me. They're a good option for those wanting a low-calorie sweet fix too, as each candy is only 12 calories. You can buy :Diablo Cappuccino & Cream sweets directly from Sweets Without for a reasonable £1.79 oer 75g bag here.