EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

New Hampshire

July 10, 2008

Dunk back in! Familiar handled doughnuts are back in Plaistow

PLAISTOW — It's time to make the doughnuts.

After six years of getting its food from a central kitchen, the Dunkin' Donuts at the corner of Route 125 and East Road is offering some homemade treats again. Operations manager Alan Daviduk Jr. dons an apron every day at 3 a.m. to bring back the handled doughnut, hand-twisted crullers and his own creative concoctions.

Daviduk, whose parents own five Dunkin' Donuts locations, started baking doughnuts when he was 15. At age 29, he had to hang up his apron when they went to a central kitchen, but he never gave up the equipment.

"I didn't want to let it go because it's almost like you feel naked without it," said Daviduk, now 35.

While the central kitchen, which is in Methuen, Mass., has its benefits, it also caused the store to lose some of its originality, owner Aminda Daviduk said. The Methuen kitchen provides baked goods for 84 stores, from Ossipee to the Boston Garden, twice a day, she said.

But the classic handled doughnut and twisted crullers can't be made in the mass production setting.

"I think anything you make by hand, you make with love," Aminda Daviduk said. "I miss frosting it, putting the sprinkles on, all the little extras."

So, Aminda Daviduk and her son worked with their connections in the corporate office to get permission to start baking again. They're starting at the 74 Plaistow Road location and will expand the home-baked goods to the family's other stores — two more in Plaistow and two in East Hampstead — if they sell enough.

Sales aren't up, but Alan Daviduk said he thinks he's just gotten a lot of people to change what they regularly buy — and they're winning back some former regulars, too.

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