I tried Surrey's new £2.30 'celebrity doughnut' - I can see why it's flying off the shelves

-Credit: (Image: SurreyLive)
-Credit: (Image: SurreyLive)

Family-run bakery, Coughlans Bakery, has joined forces with British comedian Romesh Ranganathan to launch the ‘Ranga Yum Yum’, a rope-shaped doughnut flavoured with chocolate and biscoff. It's all to raise money for CALM, the suicide prevention charity

Coughlans Bakery is a family business founded in 1937. It has grown tremendously in recent years, and now has 30 stores across Surrey and South London. I am often dubious when established bakeries launch products with celebrities - after all, what do comedians know about flavour combinations and creating delicious products?

But perhaps this will be the product to prove me wrong. Romesh Raganathan did after all appear on the first ever series of The Great British Bake Off: An Extra Slice, so he may have more baking expertise than we would expect.

It is understood the plan is to sell the Ranga Yum Yum in all of Coughlans’ 30 stores across Surrey and South London - including in Caterham, Dorking, Epsom, Reigate, and Horley.

With Ranga Yum Yums flying off the shelves, I had to see for myself what all the fuss was about. So I headed over to the Dorking store to cast my verdict.

Romesh Ranganathan attends "The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It" screening at Picturehouse Central on May 26, 2021 in London
Romesh Ranganathan -Credit:Dave J Hogan/Getty Images for Warner Bros

As soon as I walked into the bakery, the Ranga Yum Yums were staring straight at me, pride of place. Topped with chocolate frosting and a biscoff crumb, they stood out from the rest of the cabinet with their perfectly uniform and inviting decoration.

The Ranga Yum Yum is definitely made for those who have a sweet tooth. Chocolate and biscoff is joined by a sugar glaze around the outside to form the sweetest of treats. The chocolate topping was wonderfully smooth and paired perfectly with the flavour of the dough. In contrast however, the biscoff crumb was completely overpowered by the sugar glaze. For me, the intense sweetness of the glaze felt unnecessary alongside the other flavours, and I wished that it had been replaced with an extra hit of biscoff.

The dough itself is absolutely flawless. A lovely golden brown colour shows that this yum yum is baked to perfection. The inside is light and airy with a lovely bounce demonstrating the quality of the dough. I was struck by how soft the yum yum was when I bit into it, and the ratio of dough to chocolate topping was ideal.

It is the quality of the dough that separates the Coughlans Bakery yum yum from the rest and places it miles ahead of what can be found in supermarkets. You can tell that the recipe has been refined over the years with the love and care often demonstrated by family-run bakeries.

The doughnut was delicious -Credit:SurreyLive
The doughnut was delicious -Credit:SurreyLive

I was most struck by the fact that this product is entirely vegan, as are many of the items in Coughlans Bakery. It was impossible to tell however as Coughlans have clearly perfected their vegan baking, making the bakery and especially the Ranga Yum Yum ideal for vegans and non-vegans

The verdict

  • Price: £2.30

  • Texture: Light, airy and soft

  • Taste: Extremely sweet, the chocolate and biscoff were brilliant but overpowered by the sugar glaze

  • Appearance: Attractive and perfectly uniform

  • Overall: 4/5

The Ranga Yum Yum is well worth a try for anyone with a sweet tooth. Besides contributing to a brilliant cause, you’ll come away with a high quality and deliciously moreish treat.

Third-generation baker Sean Coughlan of Coughlans Bakery spoke about how the partnership came about and said: “I put it to him [Romesh]. I said ‘look, I want to do something for CALM. I want to come up with a product. What are your favourite things?’.”

Coughlans Bakery was established in 1937 by Sean’s grandfather, Jack, and has been kept in the family for the 87 years since. It has 30 stores today in a roughly 30-mile radius of its Croydon headquarters, and has ambitions to grow further still according to Sean.

Sean told SurreyLive that he devises all of the store’s recipes and that it is something he has “always lived”. He said: “I’ve been in the business since I was 14. I first came in in the school holidays. I’ve been baking all my life, it’s what I’ve known from my earliest memories as a three or four-year-old. The bakery has been our family’s life and we love it.” Coughlans celebrated the first anniversary of its Dorking store in May and also recently opened in Horley.

The Ranga Yum Yum has been launched to raise money for the suicide prevention charity CALM, of which Ranganathan is an ambassador. Besides raising awareness, Coughlans Bakery is donating 20p from every sale of the limited edition doughnut to CALM.

Back in April, the comedian ran the London Marathon to raise £41,700 for the charity, matching £21,700 of donations with £20,000 of his own money. With the Ranga Yum Yum on sale in every one of Coughlans’ stores, this campaign is on track to give the figure an even greater boost. On the 21st of June, the bakery posted on Instagram to say that they had raised “well over £1000… and it continues to rise, we are making them this month and next month too.”

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