Spudnut city: The treat you can’t miss at the PAEx

(Left to right) Big Brother Big Sisters of Prince Albert Development Coordinator Natasha Thomson and Dief Chiefs hockey club members Brody Anderson and Marc Levoy show off the chocolate drizzled Spudnuts on July 31, 2019. (Jayda Noyes/Daily Herald)

It feels like we’re all talking about our loves for different forms of potatoes: baked, mashed, chips, french fries. Why had I never heard of the doughnut form—the Spudnut—before the Prince Albert Exhibition?

Prince Albert fair goers continue to buy the treat, sometimes by the dozen, since the city’s Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) branch started selling them there decades ago.

The Spudnut is a doughnut with a twist: It’s dough has either mashed potatoes or potato starch in place of flour.

When you walk by booth, you’ll know it. The air wafts of the smell of fresh, mouth watering doughnuts, breaking the scent of your typical burger or poutine.

The sugar-flavoured Spudnut tasted similar to a mini doughnut, but in regular doughnut form. I was short of words after tasting it, only making out “I like it. It tastes like a doughnut, but I’m not complaining.”

BBBS of Prince Albert development coordinator, Natasha Thomson, said they’ve been selling Spudnuts at the fair as a fundraiser for 20 years.

“This is my fourth year in my position and it’s great to be here. Everyone is so in love with Spudnuts that it’s a real fun booth to be at,” she said.

The BBBS team is in charge of making the potato doughnuts. They’re partnering with the Dief Chiefs hockey club, who’s taking some of the weight off their shoulders and selling them.

Thomson said making Spudnuts is a lengthy process: “There’s a yeast dough, we mix it, we rise it, we shape them, rise them again and then fry them and ice them.”

They come in a variety of flavours, which Thomson ranked in terms of popularity. She said the most popular is vanilla, then chocolate, cinnamon, sugar and icing sugar, with the odd person craving a plain Spudnut.

“We do, of course, offer mentoring programs for children and youth age 6 to 16 and we offer that program completely free, so it’s fundraisers like this that help us continue to do that.”

“(Spudnuts are) not as common to find as they used to be,” she said. Although you can sometimes find the treats in different cities, BBBS of Prince Albert has definitely made them a local go-to fair food.

And I can see why they’re such a favourite. I might just have to visit the Dief Chiefs food booth and try out some other flavours in the next few days.

The Exhibition takes place until Saturday, August 3 with more attractions than just the food, including rides, photography and horticulture displays and daily chuckwagon races and other agricultural shows.

The opening day of the fair saw a record attendance with 7,307 people coming through the gates. Last year, 3,662 people attended opening day.