As National Doughnut Day rolls around, everybody's got dough on their minds in one way or another. Workers at doughnut shops are gearing up for giveaways this Friday while their parent companies are rolling out big expansion plans.
Unlike a lot of free-food fad days, National Doughnut Day has a longer, more altruistic back story. During World War I, the Salvation Army sent volunteers to France, where they made doughnuts for soldiers fighting on the front lines.
In 1917, the group dubbed the first Friday of June National Doughnut Day to commemorate the volunteers' goodwill gesture.
In true all-American fashion, these humble patriotic roots have grown into a deep-fried festival of freebies. Dunkin' Donuts, Krispy Kreme, Tim Hortons and LaMar's are all giving away free doughnuts for National Doughnut Day Friday. (There are a few conditions: Dunkin' makes you buy a beverage, while Tim Hortons requires customers to like their Facebook page and print out a coupon for a doughnut that's free with the purchase of another item.)
To keep our novelty-seeking taste buds happy, companies are finding ways to tweak or outright reinvent the doughnut, like Dunkin' Donuts new breakfast doughnut sandwich, which makes its official national debut on Friday. In case you've been living under a rock, that's bacon and eggs, sandwiched between a split glazed doughnut.
And New York City's hipster foodies are all fawning over an oddity dubbed the "cronut:" flaky croissant dough cut into a doughnut shape, then fried and glazed.