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SS1 doughnuts anninkitchen.jpg

Photo by Samantha Given-Dennis


Ann Maglaras in the kitchen of Kennebec Café, her diner in the central Maine town of Fairfield. She makes every doughnut by hand to order, 50 or more a day. The day after the graduation of nearby Colby College, she said she made at least 70.
Max Fisher travels into Northern pine country to find
Deep in Maine, Artisinal Doughnuts
in flavors of sweet potato maple and beyond.
2 OF 8
ss2 doughnuts storefront.jpg

Photo by Samantha Given-Dennis


Main Street of Fairfield, Maine. I wouldn't have even been able to find the Kennebec Café, much less known it was open, without the guidance of my sister, who'd graduated from Colby College the weekend before.
Max Fisher travels into Northern pine country to find
Deep in Maine, Artisinal Doughnuts
in flavors of sweet potato maple and beyond.
3 OF 8
SS3 doughnuts johnholdingcourt.jpg

Photo by Samantha Given-Dennis


Ann's husband John, right, can be always be found perched behind the counter, telling stories about his past life as a truck driver, most of which come with a great punch line. Ann, center, express her hospitality with her doughnuts and with the coffee pot she always keeps within quick reach.
Max Fisher travels into Northern pine country to find
Deep in Maine, Artisinal Doughnuts
in flavors of sweet potato maple and beyond.
4 OF 8
ss4 doughnuts makingbb.jpg

Photo by Samantha Given-Dennis


Ann's only tools are a deep fryer and a circular cutter she uses to shape the doughnuts. Here, she's working dough mixed with blueberries, a local favorite that can be plucked from family-owned farms a stone's throw away.
Max Fisher travels into Northern pine country to find
Deep in Maine, Artisinal Doughnuts
in flavors of sweet potato maple and beyond.
5 OF 8
ss5 doughnuts uncooked.jpg

Photo by Samantha Given-Dennis


Uncooked doughnuts await the deep fryer.
Max Fisher travels into Northern pine country to find
Deep in Maine, Artisinal Doughnuts
in flavors of sweet potato maple and beyond.
6 OF 8
SS6 doughnuts frying.JPG

Photo by Samantha Given-Dennis


Doughnuts frying. They might look similar, but each is a different flavor. Of the three light-colored rings, can you tell which is squash, which is peanut butter, and which is sweet potato? Hint: Me neither. But Ann can.
Max Fisher travels into Northern pine country to find
Deep in Maine, Artisinal Doughnuts
in flavors of sweet potato maple and beyond.
7 OF 8
ss8 doughnuts three.jpg

Photo by Samantha Given-Dennis


From left, chocolate coconut, peanut butter, and sweet potato. The coconut topping was nothing special, but the chocolate cake has a texture and deep flavor that comes from Ann's dedication to real chocolate rather than powder.

"If you could find a better chocolate coconut doughnut in the free world or behind the iron curtain, I'll pay for it," her husband, John, tells the bright-eyed students and bearded locals who gush over their steaming rings of dough.

For the peanut butter, she uses Jiffy and goes through a jar a day--I would say there's almost as much peanut butter as cake, a balance that carries all the flavor without any of that gooey texture that makes you gum like grandpa. The sweet potato comes with a maple glaze and a few crushed nuts.
Max Fisher travels into Northern pine country to find
Deep in Maine, Artisinal Doughnuts
in flavors of sweet potato maple and beyond.
8 OF 8
ss9 doughnuts squash.JPG

Photo by Samantha Given-Dennis


The squash doughnut, unadorned. It really is good, and the sweetness of the squash comes through so clearly it takes a moment before you realize you're eating a vegetable-based dessert. If carrot can have cake, can't squash have doughnuts?
Max Fisher travels into Northern pine country to find
Deep in Maine, Artisinal Doughnuts
in flavors of sweet potato maple and beyond.