Finger lickin’ fantastic

Make your own fried chicken donut sandwich without going to Kentucky.

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There’s a specific look people will give you when you say you’re going to eat a fried chicken sandwich with doughnuts for a bun. It’s a look that says, this jabroni is a few acorns short of a squirrel. I may be nuts, but I think I’ve stumbled upon a gastronomical watershed.

Kentucky Fried Chicken has taken the fast food world by storm with its fried chicken and doughnut sandwich — a piece of fried chicken embraced by two glazed donuts. It’s an all-American creation that strikes fear into the hearts of cardiologists. 

Sounds good, right? Tragically, Martha’s Vineyard has these things called “unique character” and “sense of place” (also zoning laws) that discourage fast food establishments on the Island, so seeing a KFC slinging chicken down our gullets is a far-fetched dream.

But with a little gumption and an open mind, fast food treats can be crafted on-Island. It was with this attitude The Times took a trip to Oak Bluffs and built a fried chicken doughnut sandwich.

We began by ordering the Buttermilk Fried Chicken (and a couple of Lazy Frog IPAs) at Offshore Ale Co,. and then walked across the street to buy two pairs of honey-glazed doughnuts from Back Door Donuts. 

One of the main criticisms of KFC’s ur–chicken doughnut sandwich has been the lack of sauce and accoutrements. With the help of Offshore’s manager Dave Rolanti, we got fixin’s for our sandwich that included a chipotle ranch sauce — a perfect addition to the savory fried chicken and sweet glazed doughnut. This fried chicken doughnut sandwich was now the monster to our Frankenstein, a wholly unholy creation.

I topped my sandwich with lettuce, tomato, and chipotle ranch, and good golly Miss Molly, that first bite was so freakin’ good it was like an opera of flavor and texture gamboling across my taste buds.

At first I wasn’t exactly proud of how much I enjoyed it, but after taking a few days to let it marinate in my mind, I’ve decided it might be my desert island food. It’s got all the nutrients you’ll need: vegetables, protein-rich meat, a little sugar to keep the blood flowing (disclaimer: I don’t know if that’s actually what sugar does), and I’m sure there are other nutrients packed in each bite.

As far as the aesthetics of the sandwich go, I’m not sure there’s a sandwich more worthy of an Instagram post. It’s the food equivalent of a Wes Anderson film or Oia, Santorini, and is virtually guaranteed to get you more likes than a selfie with song lyrics for a caption.

Perhaps best of all is the fried chicken doughnut sandwich’s versatility. It could theoretically be eaten for any meal of the day — especially late at night when you’re three sheets to the wind — joining pizza, cheeseburgers, and poutine in the upper echelon of foods that taste like greasy pieces of heaven.

Since Offshore gives you two pieces of fried chicken, it’s a perfect date-night meal. For all you lone wolves out there, you can eat one now and enjoy another later.

Add lettuce, tomato, onion, and chipotle ranch, slap that slab of chicken between those doughnut buns, and boom, Bob’s your uncle. I’ve been workshopping names for the sandwich too. Probably something like chicky-chicky dough-go, cock-a-doodle-doughnut surprise, or heartsbane.

Now that you know that this wonderful poultry recipe not only exists, but can be crafted on the Island, the only tip left to give is this: Maple bacon doughnuts.

Maple bacon donuts can be found at the true back door of Back Door Donuts, open late at night after the front door bakery closes up shop. While honey-glazed was a scrumptious choice, I couldn’t help but think the only thing to make this sandwich better was maple flavor (chicken and waffles anyone?). Plus bacon just makes everything taste better.

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