Your guide to finding the tastiest sufganiyot, or Hanukkah jelly donuts, in the San Fernando Valley – Daily News

on Dec23
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With Hanukkah upon us, ’tis the season for fried and sugary fritters.

One need not be Jewish to enjoy a melt-in-your-mouth jelly donut in December, of course. But Jews traditionally eat them because, like potato latkes, they’re deep fried in oil.

The treat is meant to serve as a reminder of — after the Greeks were driven from the holy temple in Jerusalem — how a batch of oil required to light the menorah for one day lasted for eight nights.

Sufganiyot, the Hebrew word for donuts, are an even bigger deal in Israel. Lines of people snake down the street from Tel Aviv bakeries waiting for donuts available in dizzying array of flavors and themes — Burger King even once made a Whopper with a sufganiya bun.

Craving one yet? Here are the San Fernando Valley spots where you’ll find heavenly donuts for any holiday celebration.

Unique Cafe, 18381 Ventura Blvd. in Tarzana

This Kosher bakery-cafe ships out boxes of sufganiyot to synagogues, schools and other groups across the Valley. It must be because owner Irit Stein makes a stellar jelly donut, fluffy and with ample tart raspberry jelly. Years ago the famous Bea’s Bakery, just a few parking spots away in the same shopping center, carried her donuts.

Her secret?

“At this time of year I don’t compromise. I buy really good stuff,” she said. “The best quality chocolate, everything.”

The flavors: Jelly, Halva, Dulce de leche, chocolate, vanilla custard, tiramisu 

The price: $2.50 to $3.00 a piece

Ángel bakery & cafe, 17928 Ventura Blvd. in Encino

Situated right next to a kosher meat market, this unpretentious bakery formerly known as ‘Love bakery and cafe’ is filled with a steady stream of customers.

“Over in Israel you can find a lot of places to buy sufganiyot, but over here I didn’t see a lot of the kind I make,” said owner Eden Smith said of her feathery donuts with almost neon bright raspberry jelly.

She suggested that using margarine shorting to keep things kosher makes her donuts tastier than your average donut shop. They are delicious.

The flavors: Jelly, Chocolate, Dulce de leche, halva, vanilla, plain

The prices: $2.75 a piece

Blinkie’s Donut Emporium, 4884 Topanga Canyon Blvd. in Woodland Hills

Not kosher but definitely the most festive! Blinkie’s on Topanga Canyon Boulevard is known for their detailed donut decorations for every holiday or occasion, and Hanukkah is no exception. They also sell Hanukkah-themed frosted cake donuts for those who want to get into the spirit but aren’t so much into jelly filling.

Flavors: Jelly, chocolate 

Prices: $1.90 per jelly donut, $2.50 with sprinkles. Cake with sprinkles $1.25 

Roladin Restaurant, 19365 Victory Blvd. in Reseda

That bakery with lines out the door in Tel Aviv? It’s called Roladin, too. In keeping with Israeli custom, this joint with a full restaurant menu dishes out a markedly expansive array of sufganiya flavors. Slightly cakier dough but tasty nonetheless. Best to order ahead.

Flavors: Jelly, nutella, chocolate, vanilla, creme brulee, pistachio, halva, dulce de leche, ferrero roche

Prices: $2.50 to $3.00 a piece

Pascal Patisserie, 21040 Victory Blvd. in Woodland Hills

If jelly that’s a wee bit thicker is your style, Pascal is the place. Friendly owner Sarah Geller of the busy cafe has a loyal following of her baked goods, from challah to the perky and pretty sufganiyot. Definitely get a pistachio croissant for later.

Flavors: Jelly, nutella, halva, custard and plain on request

Price: $2.00 each



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