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The Dutch, Doughnuts, and Potential Defeats: The Potluck Makes its Predictions

How will Michigan State finish the 2022 season?

Doughnuts: the original breakfast sin.
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Sorry for the delay, everyone! Here’s your Michigan State predictions potluck.


There are a lot of people of Dutch descent in Michigan, as I’m sure you know. This is especially true of western Michigan, where there are many “van Somethings” and also, Calvinists. But this is a potluck, so instead of focusing on the thorny theological issue of predestination, let’s bring some carbs to this party. Fortunately, Dutch culture lives on in Michigan through numerous bakeries, all proudly calling themselves “the best Dutch bakery.”

There’s Boonzaaijer Bakery in Kalamazoo, Steenstra’s Royal Dutch Bakery in Grandville, deBoer Bakkerij in Holland, and Van’s Pastry Shop in Grand Rapids. Most of these bakeries have been around for generations, and serve not only Dutch specialties, but doughnuts as well. Because as it turns out, we may have the Dutch to thank for the “American” doughnut. Early Dutch settlers brought the “oliebollen” or “olykoeks” (or, accurately, “oil balls” or “oily cakes”) with them to modern-day New York. Many cultures have fried dough, so it’s questionably whether the Dutch should get all the credit here, but they do seem to bear some of the closest resemblance to where we are today:

Perhaps only God could have foreknown what delicacies those olykoeks would eventually become, but we’re glad they’re here.

So, writers and readers:

1. Are there any local bakeries or donut shops in your neck of the woods that deserve a shout-out?

2. What are your feelings regarding the gourmet donut craze–you know, the donuts with several strips of bacon or half a box of cereal on top?

3. What’s your go-to donut?

misdreavus79: There are two –Georgetown Cupcakes, which isn’t local to MA, of course, and Gerardo’s Italian Bakery, which is. I’ve eaten from both, and the cupcakes from the former are pretty delicious, and the full cakes from the latter are some of the best non-Dominican cakes I’ve ever eaten.

If you are looking for a Dominican cake, which, in my humble opinion, you should, they’re a dime a dozen in NY, and in MA, there are a couple in the Lawrence area, where all the Dominicans live. I have unfortunately not tried any of the local varieties so I can’t make a recommendation, but back in New York, uh, I actually ordered them from my friend’s mom so I guess I can’t make a recommendation either! Moving right along…

When it comes to gourmet donuts, or gourmet anything really, my policy is simple: If there are people willing to pay you money for random shit, you go and sell that random shit to people!

MNW: While in Grand Rapids (feels like we talk more GRR than EL when we do Sparty Week, oh well) I did go to Van’s Pastry Shoppe and get a good donut. Didn’t try their glazed fat balls, though, if I’m remembering that name right. Just had a custard-filled donut. It was very good. And they’re Dutch, I’d bet!

In the Twin Cities, while a number of those boutique kinds of donut places have been popping up, there’s something to be said for a place that just gets the damn pastry right. It’s not unlike a craft beer: while your mocha java bourbon barrel imperial stout with vanilla may be nosey and boozy and whatever else, I’m automatically suspicious of adjuncts. A box of cereal atop your donut is akin to needing to put passionfruit in your wheat beer without first letting me try your wheat beer: what are you hiding? Instead, a local chain that does quality work is Wuollet’s. It’s 5 minutes from our house, I get a caramel pecan roll, the wife gets a chocolate croissant, we both go home happy.

WSR: I am a fan of The Donut Trap going back to his doughnut food truck days and Sunrise Doughnuts in Bloomington, for different reasons. Sunrise is your boring, traditional doughnut collection and they’re all great. Meanwhile Donut Trap is the cereal/bacon/creative stuff and they’re…yeah, I need a minute here because I just started drooling a bit. If you want a Doughnut I’m not always a fan of, it’d be the cat that I inherited from my family that can be a bitey asshole from time to time. Independent when she wants to be, aggressive, and ridiculous. Solid cat, outstanding name from Kid2.

Kind of…: Living near Philly means I am not that far from the greater Lancaster area and the presence of the Pennsylvania Dutch. Who, we all know, never were Dutch. But, like the legit Dutch of Michigan, they make some great donuts (and shoo-fly pie). I mean, if you’d rather eat scrapple, be my guest, but, yeah, old-timey donuts are where it’s at.

To a limited extent, I have participated in said donut craze, so I’d be a hypocrite to criticize it too much. That said, maple glaze is about as radical as I get anymore. And, honestly, if all you have to offer is a traditional donut sprinkled with sugar, I will gladly accept with a big smile on my face. Donuts are great.

Poll

What’s your doughnut of choice?

  • 16%
    A nice cake donut, maybe some glaze or sprinkles if I feel frisky.
    (24 votes)
  • 5%
    A nice raised donut, maybe some glaze or sprinkles if I feel frisky.
    (8 votes)
  • 24%
    Something custard-filled would be tasty.
    (36 votes)
  • 9%
    Something jam-filled would be tasty.
    (14 votes)
  • 10%
    Gimme one of those maple somethings.
    (15 votes)
  • 9%
    How about a nice bear claw?
    (14 votes)
  • 0%
    More of a chocolate croissant cat, myself.
    (1 vote)
  • 12%
    I’d go for a Long John, thanks.
    (18 votes)
  • 5%
    Gimme a half-pound of bacon atop a something-or-other.
    (8 votes)
  • 0%
    I’ll take a whole box of cereal on the donut, thanks.
    (1 vote)
  • 2%
    A..uh...cupcake?
    (3 votes)
  • 0%
    Something different, which I will tell you about in the comments.
    (1 vote)
  • 4%
    I’ll take the bitey asshole cat, actually.
    (6 votes)
149 votes total Vote Now

Football:

It’s prediction day, which I’m personally very excited for, because it means I don’t have to think about MSU football any longer. After going an amazing 11-2 last season, how will Sparty fare this season?

Happily for them, Purdue is not on the schedule this year! To me, this looks like a fairly manageable schedule– perhaps not 11-2, as that took a bit of luck, but Sparty’s got room for a good year, culminating in everyone’s favorite laser game!

So, writers and readers:

What will MSU’s record be this year? Remember to show your work!

misdreavus79: Just a few more!

Mel Tucker is 2-0 against Michigan, so I’m being quite generous to the Wolverines when I put them in the “might lose” category here. I wouldn’t be surprised if Michigan State manages to beat them yet again. Likewise, it took a near miracle to pull out the win against Penn State at home, so I don’t expect them to replicate that magic again on the road.

The rest are pretty straightforward. Sweep the bottom teams, win your home games, and with enough luck, you can repeat 10-2. I don’t expect such luck two years in a row, so I’m going with 8-4.

MNW: Kalen DeBoer actually bothered to do some good things at Fresno State (and even Indiana!), so even without his quarterback it’d depend on who the Huskies’ QB—---HOOBOY LOOKS LIKE WE’VE FOUND OUR PENIX.

So…uh…is Penix gonna be healthy? Because if so, look out for September 17. The Huskies bring back a number of WRs, though we’ll have to see if the Penix “500” passing style has success against a leaky Sparty secondary. Penix had a day in the Battle for Ol’ Brassy back in 2019, though a lot’s changed since then (including that I don’t see Whop Philyor on the Huskies’ roster).

Get back to me on the UW game…but otherwise? I’m not quite as bullish on Sparty. The questions at running back and my own disbelief that Payton Thorne’s Rock Hard Nipples could actually be a decent quarterback have me…uh…

Well, I’ve talked myself into Sparty winning a shootout on the Sound, then dropping a pair in the quagmire of games pre-Michigan: while they get ¾ of those at home, a decently-rested Goldy, frisky Terps, and back-to-back Ohio State and wisconsin could be rough. That’s a pretty brutal five-game stretch, all things considered. The win over Michigan is automatic, naturally, and barring a rush of blood to the head over the Illinois-Rutgers-Indiana track, Michigan State could be set up for an NY6 play-in against Penn State.

All that said, there are three losses in there. They’re all in conference, but they mean it’s a likely Outback Bowl (or whatever it is now) trip for Sparty. Let’s say 9-3 (6-3 B1G).

WSR: I’m more bullish on Sparty than I thought, but that schedule really helps. 9-3, 6-3 B1G. Losses to Ohio State, Penn State, and Minnesota because why not?

Kind of…: Like MNW, that game with Washington looks…interesting. And B1G teams heading West is usually a recipe for comedy, but, yeah, I think MSU will escape.

I typically try to be precise and specify wins and losses, but, man, there are five games where I’m just like “maybe?” I’m going to say 8-4 (5-4) while noting that Tucker has things pointed in such a way that this will count as a “down” season.

BoilerUp89: I’m going to go with 9-3 with losses to OSU, Michigan, and PSU. Because this is what I want to happen in MSU’s crossover games and what I think will happen in their division games.

Poll

Michigan State in the Big Ten?

  • 3%
    9-0
    (8 votes)
  • 7%
    8-1
    (19 votes)
  • 18%
    7-2
    (46 votes)
  • 37%
    6-3
    (95 votes)
  • 26%
    5-4
    (67 votes)
  • 5%
    4-5
    (13 votes)
  • 1%
    3-6 or worse
    (5 votes)
253 votes total Vote Now

Poll

Michigan State overall?

  • 2%
    12-0
    (7 votes)
  • 4%
    11-1
    (12 votes)
  • 13%
    10-2
    (32 votes)
  • 30%
    9-3
    (74 votes)
  • 29%
    8-4
    (71 votes)
  • 14%
    7-5
    (36 votes)
  • 2%
    6-6
    (7 votes)
  • 1%
    5-7 or worse
    (4 votes)
243 votes total Vote Now