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Pastry Chef Janina O’Leary Launches Sweet Doughnut Pop-Ups

Dubbed Play Dough

Janina O’Leary and the Fancy Pants doughnut
Janina O’Leary and the Fancy Pants doughnut
Courtesy of Janina O’Leary
Nadia Chaudhury is the editor of Eater Austin covering food and pop culture, as well as a photographer, writer, and frequent panel moderator and podcast guest.

Pastry chef Janina O’Leary is bringing back her famous doughnuts with a bakery pop-up series. The first takes place at General Tso’Boy on Saturday, August 27 starting at 10:30 p.m. until sold out. On deck for the pop-up is the Fancy Pants doughnut, inspired by her "fine dining background," explained O’Leary. It’s made with a brioche doughnut, strawberry rose jam, and lemon curd. Check out the full line-up below.

Update, September 12: For Play Dough's next two pop-ups, O'Leary's taking over Swoop House on Sunday, September 25 starting at 11 a.m., and then Franklin Barbecue on Sunday, October 2 at 9 a.m. Will this mean a potentially barbecue-filled doughnut will be in the works?

O’Leary is also collaborating with General Tso’Boy for a limited soft serve made with sweet milk, matcha fudge sauce and green tea powder, available on Friday, August 19, for about a week.

Desserts are O’Leary’s strong suit, like her lauded brioche doughnuts. She was also a semifinalist for the James Beard Awards' Rising Star Chef in 2013.

Janina and her husband Sean O’Leary, who was then-interim executive director of LaV, both left the restaurant in October 2015, which soon closed down at the beginning of the year. The O’Learys have been hosting occasional pop-up dinners at Swoop House. She also previously worked for Trace, Del Posto, and Per Se.

Play Dough Pop-Up’s Menu
Fancy Pants: brioche doughnut, strawberry rose jam, lemon curd, $3
#Tsogood: matcha fudge sauce with Tso’Boy Sweet Milk soft serve, chocolate chip cookie doughnut, $5
Cherry on Top: bourbon coconut pastry cream, piña, cherry, $3
Sugar Coated: brioche doughnut holes, $3

General Tso'Boy

11501 Rock Rose, Austin, Texas 78758