Leith's The Kilted Donut selling limited-edition insect-topped doughnut

Leith-based The Kilted Donut is trying to persuade customers to try a doughnut topped with roasted insects – a move it says is to help highlight sustainability in the food chain.

Saturday, 11th September 2021, 12:51 pm
Updated Saturday, 11th September 2021, 1:27 pm

The special offering, available today only, comes as the baked goods specialist prepares to open its second branch, on St. Stephen Street in Stockbridge, tomorrow. The new site will complement its original premises on Great Junction Street in Edinburgh.

The firm has taken to Instagram to ask if people “have the guts” to try the “Jiminy” – a chocolate-glazed doughnut, sprinkled with Sriracha-roasted crickets, and fiery Scotch bonnet sauce.

Director and co-founder Lena Wollan said it is a “great combination of chocolate and chili, with the crickets just adding a crunch – they're actually very tasty!”

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The doughnut is billed as a 'great combination of chocolate and chili, with the crickets just adding a crunch'. Picture: contributed.

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Ms Wollan who hails from Minnesota, and runs the firm with Glaswegian Mark Anderson, said the firm was inspired to launch the product due to their interest in sustainability, having followed the movement promoting the eating of crickets and other insects for protein, rather than obtaining it from conventional meat-producing animals.

"We just thought it would be fun to do and see what people’s reactions would be,” she added – saying it has caused a lot of “intrigue”.

"Some people have been a little bit disgusted by it, which I’m not surprised at… but overall it’s been a fairly positive reaction,” she also stated.

Lena Wollan and Mark Anderson run the doughnut shop - which is launching in Stockbridge. Picture: Catriona Thomson.

The move follows in the footsteps of other unusual doughnut flavours the firm has offered over the years, including curry, black pudding, and haggis. “We definitely try to push boundaries,” Ms Wollan laughed.

The firm’s current range includes a fiery Scotch Bonnet hot sauce glazed doughnut covered in crushed Cheetos, and a maple bacon offering, as well as more conventional flavours such as chocolate sprinkles, red velvet, and vanilla.

As for whether The Kilted Donut plans to debut anything further similar to the cricket version, the answer is a definite “yes”. Ms Wollan said: “We’re always up to try new things – and try weird and wonderful things.”

One study has forecast that the edible insects market will be worth the equivalent of $3.3 billion by 2027, and another believes replacing half of the meat consumed around the world with insects such as crickets could cut farmland use by a third.

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