Ahead of Chanukah, Chabad of Downtown to host doughnut-making event

A Young Jewish Professionals' Hamantaschen Bake at Chabad of Downtown, Feb. 2020
A Young Jewish Professionals’ Hamantaschen Bake at Chabad of Downtown, Feb. 2020 (Courtesy of Chabad of Downtown)

Why go out for doughnuts if you can make your own?

Chabad of Downtown is holding an event the evening of Nov. 17 for young Jewish professionals to get in the spirit of Chanukah by making and tasting doughnuts.

“It’s an opportunity for young Jewish adults to get together and celebrate their Judaism, and themselves, by doing fun things that are Jewishly themed,” Chabad of Downtown Rabbi Levi Druk said.

“A lot of Jewish tradition [is] around food,” Druk continued. “Chanukah is coming up, and [with] Chanukah, there’s a tradition to eat oily foods, to commemorate the miracle of the oil. So in preparation for Chanukah, our [young Jewish professional] committee suggested we do an artisan doughnut baking.”

Druk’s Chabad, located in Little Italy, has been hosting social events for young Jewish adults for the past 14 years, he said.

“We do many events to bring young Jewish adults together, so they can get to know each other and celebrate their being Jewish,” Druk said.

Chabad of Downtown typically holds baking and cooking events two or three times a year, Druk said. In the past, they have made latkes, hamantaschen and challah. Druk believes this may be the first time his Chabad has done a doughnut-themed event in the last 12 to 14 years, he said.

The event will be led by Chani Druk, Levi Druk’s wife, who has been making doughnuts for Chanukah for the past 20 years, he said.

A Young Jewish Professionals' Matzah Bake Madness, behind Chabad of Downtown in March of 2021
A Young Jewish Professionals’ Matzah Bake Madness, behind Chabad of Downtown, March 2021 (Courtesy of Chabad of Downtown)

He noted that a wide variety of flavors would be available at the event, including caramel, jelly, cinnamon, custard and chocolate. There will also be apple cider doughnuts and doughnuts with other types of fillings and toppings.

“You can use different batters for the doughnut, they can be different shapes for the doughnut, doughnuts with holes, and there’s the sufganiyot without holes,” Druk said. “Then the doughnuts have toppings. You can cover them with chocolate, custard, different kinds of toppings, and then some doughnuts have you can inject fillings.”

Druk said that making doughnuts is not as hard as some might think.

“I don’t think it’s too challenging, especially not if you have someone showing you what to do,” Druk said. “Anyone can do it, maybe it just takes a little instruction.”

As the event’s purpose is to help get the community into “Chanukah mode,” Druk said, Chabad of Downtown will have menorahs and other “Chanukah paraphernalia” available at the event to ensure everyone has what they need to celebrate the holiday.

While Druk mostly wants attendees to simply have a good time, he said, he hopes that attendees “take away a sense of pride, and, I guess, that Judaism is fun, and mingling with other Jewish young adults could be fun.”

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