In yet another diet-busting development, Reading Terminal Market now hosts something it sorely lacked: a doughnut stand.
The Beilers - father Alvin and sons Kevin and Keith - have retooled their AJ Pickle Patch and Salads shop near the 12th and Arch Streets corner, where they sold packaged, jarred and canned Pennsylvania Dutch items.
Beiler's Doughnuts and Salads - their salads and pickles now occupy one side of the stand - is across the aisle from the family's Beiler's Bakery, where they sell breads, pies and whoopie pies.
The current doughnut rage provided inspiration to the Beilers, who routinely fried doughnuts in an electric fryer for various Pennsylvania Dutch festivals. After scouting doughnut operations at farmer's markets in South Jersey, they bought a gas-fired fryer and filling equipment.
They fill the plump beauties two at a time, and sit the containers of fillings out in plain sight behind the counter - you cannot look at a gallon or two of Boston cream or Dutch apple without drooling.
They make about 40 varieties - your basic bakery favorites, no kooky dustings or rare spices, 90 cents each/$9.50 a dozen - and an informal office poll found them moist and superior.