Dough-Nu-Matic Automatic Doughnut Machine

doughnumatic.jpg

The culmination of American consumer electronics: the $130 starch-and-sugar-dispensing “Dough-Nu-Matic,” an all-in-one machine that forms and fries mini-doughnuts in just under a minute. Without too much trouble I should be able to saw off the small plastic catch at the end and position my yawning maw directly underneath, each donut triggering an infrared sensor that activates a motorized belt attached to my jaw. Two jugs will be positioned over my head, one of milk, the other coffee, spraying a constant mist into my mouth to provide lubrication. Every twelfth doughnut will contain a creamy Klonopin filling.

At random intervals, a distant alarm will sound, barely discerned through the waxy lard that sloughs out of my ears, signifying that somewhere a war has been waged, an endangered species has passed irrevocably through the veil, or that one of my countrymen have been rendered to provide oil for my doughnut fryer. Knotted workmen will scamper across my cracking grey husk using psoriatic skin shards as hand holds, as I defecate an ever-spiraling wizard’s tower of red, white, and blue.

Catalog Page [Skymall (Where else?) via CrunchGear]

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50 Responses to Dough-Nu-Matic Automatic Doughnut Machine

  1. chef says:

    I’m sold.

  2. Jesse Raub says:

    Those colors on the side of that machine look suspicious.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Interesting that it was linked as “disgusting” from the main page. I can’t figure out what’s disgusting about it.

    Oh, I know! We’re so mentally brain damaged by health food brochures that we have convinced ourselves that even something as incredibly awesome as doughnuts are disgusting, because otherwise we’d have the self-control of a falling brick and we’d eat 50 of them.

    And by “we” I mean you all. Cause I still love doughnuts, and I’m still in shape, cause I heard of something called “willpower” and “portion control”…

  4. Anonymous says:

    Homer Price FTW! I thought my brother and I were the only two people in the world who’ve read those books!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Dude, I’m feelin’ that yer gonna want Klonopin in, oh, every OTHER donut or so . . .

  6. Bazilisk says:

    THAT should have been the copy in the catalog. I may have bought it out of sheer amusement.

  7. things says:

    Joel, this is the gadget reporting I live for. No one beats your style. I seem to remember a post on gizmodo way back when where you talked about this ipod 3g hack which made the screen look like it had been “freebasing crest white strips.” Amazing.

    Have you thought about a book? I’d buy a book of gadget news like this for sure.

  8. joefrommaine says:

    Did a quick google search, it’s only $99.99 at JCPenny’s…

  9. MrsBug says:

    @ #19 Anonymous
    Michigander here and I can tell you I’ve never heard of a “mini-donut” before. Donut hole, sure. Mini-donut? Sounds fishy. I say this as I welcome the 5 new Tim Horton’s to our area! Honey cruller…..mmmmmmm!

  10. Anonymous says:

    Hiyez.

    I truly think this is the most brilliant, profound and moving product review that I have ever seen anywhere on the internet, ever.

    The reviewer is clearly sick, twisted, and demented. Just like me, eh?

    Seeyez.

  11. HunterZ says:

    Oh my God that was the funniest thing I’ve read in a long time. I’m trying to hard not to crack up laughing.

  12. Hunty says:

    what… the… donut?

  13. OM says:

    …Hey, those are Krispy Kreme’s colors! Anyone care to place bets on when the lawsuit will be filed? :-)

  14. bxrguy says:

    Oh, get OVER yourself. It’s a fricking doughnut machine, it’s not the end of the world.

    Geez.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Your posts are always inspirational, but this post, in particular, is instantly the “Hamlet” of snarky gadget-blog posts. You, sir, are a true hero. I tip my sweat stained hat to you as I rise out of my worn and creaking chair, only to collapse back into my usual hunched and spider-fingered posture after that brief and shining cathartic moment.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Whomever wrote the great review of the Do-Nu-Matic automatic doughnut making machine on December 27th 2007, THANK YOU!
    I own and operate a Mobile Espresso/Smoothie Bar, and thought that this device would work great to make custom mini doughnuts for my customers who buy latte’s, mocha’s, cappuccino’s etc. from me.
    Your review really helped determine if I should invest in one. Since it was the ONLY TRUE review of the machine I have found so far, I did appreciate it. Thanks again.

    J.B.
    Los Angeles, Ca.

  17. Zan says:

    I’ve seen mini-donut machines in Fanuel Hall Market in Boston and at the Big E (New England’s equvalent of a state fair). But they are rare. Rare and delicious.

  18. Anonymous says:

    48 hours…ever hear of that program? That’s about how long those plastic parts are going to last.

  19. Melodie Ladner says:

    Screw the h8rs, Joel. I’d still bear your children.

    Sure, they’d be hideous mutants, but that’s not your fault. Pretty well everything I eat comes in a bag and has no sell-by date.

  20. citicritter says:

    Anyone been to Prague? They used to have an amazing sidewalk mini donut vendor on the main street in the old city, selling what were called doughnutties — yumo!

  21. Anonymous says:

    This is soooo much cooler than the smores maker my friend got as a wedding gift a few years back. I don’t know if I’d just leave it on display in my house or constantly try offering friends experimental donuts; jalepeno and rasin, ginger curry, peanut butter and bacon bits…

  22. Provlear says:

    When did Tycho start writing for Boing Boing?

  23. Anonymous says:

    Sign me up!

  24. Terry Rock says:

    Do-nu-matic?? Come ON! How about the Donut ROBOT (Mark V)!! Now we’re talking: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rockster/1819636887/

  25. Anonymous says:

    I like donuts. And, post-organic health-hipster issues be damned, I bet you do to.

    This device isn’t offensive or evil because it makes unhealthy treats. It’s offensive and evil, because it preys on those sad, culinarily challenged sods that don’t realize that it’s reasonably easy to make donuts from scratch without the need for useless, space-wasting devices.

  26. wickedgoodgrrrl says:

    #12 (and other Homer Price fans): No, you’re not the only ones who read them. “Two trip slips for a two cent fare”!

    Dang, I want a good doughnut and coffee now…and a copy of Centerburg Tales.

  27. Anonymous says:

    First hand experience and review of the Dough-Nu-Matic Automatic Doughnut Machine.

    When I saw this on BB I knew I had to get one. The machine arrived a little late but in time for Christmas and was wrapped under the tree. The device was a big surprise when opened and it was decided we would try it out the next day.

    First attempt was with the first recipe listed in the instructions “Donut Delights”. This recipe used a vinegar and baking soda mixture along with the usual ingredients but that batter did not cook well. The oil seemed to leach into the dough and made for a very greasy donut. Switched from Soybean oil to Canola oil but this did not fix the problem. I measured the temperature of the oil at 325F but my favorite donut recipe calls for 370-380F using Crisco. You’re not suppose to use Crisco in the machine so I put a pan on the stove and dropped some of this batter in when the temp was 375F and the dough still did not cook well. I guess I screwed up the batter or this batter isn’t so good.

    Second attempt a couple days later using my favorite donut recipe did not go well either as the batter was way to thick to drop out of the gravity dough dispenser used in the machine. Professional machines use CO2 or a ratchet and cover to push the dough out of the dispenser. I tried adding more milk and oil to the batter to get the consistency right but I ended up with something too runny. Oh well, let’s try again since the kitchens already messy.

    Third attempt was with the “Buttermilk Donuts” recipe listed in the instructions. It had ingredients closest to the previous attempt and I hoped I could get the consistency right. The gravity feed donut dispenser is really touchy to get the thickness of the dough just right. Even measuring things exactly may not be precise enough as the flour can be packed in or light and fluffy by sifting which can lead to two completely different results. After adjusting the batter with a little extra milk I was able to get some good donuts out of the machine but the donuts were not as consistent as I wanted. After watching the machine I was able to determine that it closes the dispenser at the same rate it opens it. This results in the donut dropping off the dispenser from one side to the other. This sometimes resulted in a figure eight, stretched or broken donut. I found that if disconnected the automatic drop and I manually controlled the drop with a quick close the donut would drop off correctly all at once and create a nice shaped donut. Also as the dough level in the dispenser drops the time it must be left open to get the same amount of dough increases. The machine always automatically opens and closes the dispenser the same amount every time. The other issue was that the donut would not always cook enough I think this is due to the lower fry temp the machine uses, probably a UL thing or something. It would have been nice to have an actual thermostat on the device so you could set the cook temp or adjust the motor speed. To fix the problem you just keep the top door open and after the donut flipper has flipped the donut you can flip it manually again out of the little conveyor thing at let it catch the next conveyor thing that pushes the donuts along. Each basket can hold one or two donuts. The donut flipper works most of the time if the oil level is good if it’s too high or low it doesn’t work as well.

    After a couple hours we has 10-12 dozen yummy donuts just as the recipe says.

    Cleanup is a bit of work as you really cannot clean the inside of the machine well. I ran the machine and a little while longer and removed the conveyor baskets for cleaning. However there is no way to run the motor without the heater so you can only run it a little bit and then let it cool down again otherwise you begin to burn the empty oil pan. It would have been nice if the conveyor could have been independently operated. Also the oil drain has an S curve using a bit of flexible tubing. This got clogged for me with donut crumbs and I had to clean it out using a craft pipe cleaner before I could get it to drain again. This should be a straight drop into the oil pan below so you can just stick something straight down to clean out crumbs instead.

    So what’s the verdict, it does make yummy donuts just not at automatic and as easy as I was hoping for.

    What I’d like to see for version 2.0 in order of preference.

    1. Actual thermostat with temp that goes to at least 370F.
    2. Variable speed conveyor motor.
    3. Remove the S curve from the drain.
    4. Dispenser with a quick close.
    5. Variable dispenser open time.
    6. Dispenser with a ratchet cover or air pump to push dough out.
    7. Actually dip the head of the dispenser in the oil each drop to clean the head.
    8. Allow me to open the machine and clean inside a bit better.

    I can confirm that outside of MN mini donuts are very rare. Even buying a proper ordinary donut dough dispenser is difficult. I still use my great grandma’s which uses a manual ratchet and cover to push the dough out.

    I hope someone finds this useful.

  28. Anonymous says:

    So here in minnesota, mini donuts are pretty common (especially at the MN state fair where millions are sold every year) and this device is pretty much a less industrial version of the machine used at mini donut stands. I recently went on a trip to Michigan and discovered a man selling mini-donuts. he said that they were a rarity outside of MN and that he had to order everything for his machine (parts, batter, etc) from Minnesota. Is this true? are mini donuts, so great a part of my fried food experience, is something the majority of Americans grew up without? or was the donut salesman in Mackinaw, Michigan feeding us a line to encourage the purchase of his fried confections?

  29. Anonymous says:

    to the Minnesotan, yes you are probably right that not everyone had these treats as a kid. I never saw a mini donut machine outside of one place in Fulton Fish Market down in NYC and the one we have here in Seattle at Pike Place Market ( also a fish market… Coincidence?). They are definitly an occasional treat as I don’t want to die young. But I do enjoy taking our visiting friends there.

  30. Anonymous says:

    Honestly, the best post I’ve read in a long long time!

  31. cautionyou says:

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  32. Stefan Jones says:

    Homer Price, where art thou?

  33. Halloween Jack says:

    America needs Homer Price.

    #22: Envious much?

  34. Scypher says:

    I’m a little upset that they can’t choose a distinct enough typeface so that their machine does not practically say “DOUGH-HU-MATIC”.

    To be fair, though, I’d buy a DOUGH HU DOUGH HU DOUGH HU DOUGH HU DOUGH HU DOUGH HU DOUGH HU DOUGH HU DOUGH HU DOUGH HU

  35. PopeRatzo says:

    Bravo! Bravissimo!

  36. JC says:

    I want a donut, real bad.

  37. meherenowie says:

    Love comment #8. Homer Price books are still available in library free bins; I got for my kids–get for yours!

  38. Lydia9 says:

    I was all proud of myself for skipping the donut this morning after a solid month of Halloween bacchanalia at my job, IN A LIBRARY and now I’m thinking about getting one at lunch. Thanks a lot, Boingboing.

    Can you put other things through the machine? I wonder if you could make some delicious pakoras?

  39. Anonymous says:

    Nothing like the life-affirming fellatio of your audience to make you want to repeat the same quasi-cynical routines over and over. If you could just refine your jaded derision into no more than a dozen phrases, your popularity would soar. You would be the “Family Guy” of online comedy. Plus, writing your updates would be no more difficult than filling out a “Mad Lib.”

  40. Throb says:

    This is the most brilliant, inspiring thing I have ever read. *wipes tear from cheek*

  41. Lea Hernandez says:

    Beautiful post.

    And HOMER PRICE! Yes!

  42. Tubman says:

    Who would have thought that the Great American Novel would come in at under 200 words?

  43. Anonymous says:

    I bought one of these on the weight of this post, sending it to my brother who was expected to get a great kick out of it. He did. He set it up next to the chocolate fountain we sent him last year. Tiny donuts dipped in hot flowing oily chocolate made the party girls swoon.

  44. Teresa Nielsen Hayden / Moderator says:

    Joel, you are a great American writer.

    BXRGuy, it pains me right here in my exquisite literary sensibilities to have to tell you that you missed the point.

  45. Cazart says:

    Homer SIMPSON, where art thou?

  46. Simon Greenwood says:

    The semi-industrial machines were a staple of trade shows when I was a kid, even in the UK, and I was always mesmerised by them. And now I can buy my own tiny version. Hmm… I think I’d prefer the full sized model. Maybe it will go in the basement…

  47. Anonymous says:

    Soy loco por los Cornballs!

  48. Anonymous says:

    Doughnuts are probably the best fried food ever invented and if i were old enough i could have been the one to invent the doughnut.

  49. alfish says:

    Oh…….My………Cosmic Intelligence

  50. Anonymous says:

    What style! What grammar and great prose! This is probably one of this centuries grand pieces of writing and should be nominated for a Nobel for outstanding literature!

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