There are many doughnuts in the world to love. But few are as plump and sugared, slight in weight, and brashly fragrant as the cardamom doughnuts from Bluebird Coffee Shop in the East Village. They're a baked doughnut, which makes them even more dangerously accessible.
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You make the dough the night before, and it will seem impossibly wet -- the key to fluffy doughnuts. Even after watching Adam Baumgart, the pastry chef, make the doughnuts, I didn't trust my instincts and threw out the first batch, thinking it was all wrong. But another batch and 2:30 am later, I got it right. So don't do what I did, and you'll be just fine.
The next morning you do a little shaping and spritzing and dipping into chopped pistachios, and you are near the finish line.
Baking fiends knew Bluebird Coffee Shop, but it was such a tiny space that it never got too big for its britches. Earlier this week, Merrill wrote about their Cheese Biscuits. Baumgart was generous to share his excellent recipes, and while that is good news, the sad news is that Bluebird is changing ownership this Sunday and Baumgart is moving on. But tastes of the old Bluebird can live on in all of our kitchens.
A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).
Before starting Food52 with Merrill, I was a food writer and editor at the New York Times. I've written several books, including "Cooking for Mr. Latte" and "The Essential New York Times Cookbook." I played myself in "Julie & Julia" -- hope you didn't blink, or you may have missed the scene! I live in Brooklyn with my husband, Tad, and twins, Walker and Addison.