Going to Bonito Michoacan made me regret giving up chocolate for Lent. As I browsed the shelves of baked goods, my eye was continually drawn to gooey, delicious-looking and decidedly chocolatey concoctions.
I noticed during my exploration of the goodies lining the walls that Bonito Michoacan had an authentic feel to it. The entire place was colorful with Mexican decorations I couldn’t name, and there was really catchy Latin music playing. The bakery managed to create an appealing atmosphere despite a somewhat unfamiliar location in the middle of Kansas City, Kansas.
I had several people ask me for baked goods when they heard I was going to a Mexican bakery, which was something none of us had really heard of before. I actually wouldn’t have known about it in the first place except for the fact that my dad sometimes stops there on his way home from work to get fresh tortillas on the nights we have tacos for dinner. Having a sweet tooth, I wanted to go myself and try some other things the bakery had to offer.
After roaming around for a while, I managed to appreciate all the other colorful, chocolate-free Mexican pastries. I eventually decided on a coconut treat, a pink pastry called conchos, and a large sugary donut. All three items I bought were twice as large as a normal donut, and when the woman charged me $2.81 at the register I thought it was a mistake. I had been hoping my $10 bill would stretch to afford my purchases and here I was spending under a dollar per pastry. There was no mistake: this was actually the price, and gratefully I proceeded to sample what I had bought. I thought there was no way I would finish all three.
First, I tore off part of the sugary donut to try and it quite literally melted in my mouth. It was light and fluffy and not doughy like other donuts I’ve had previously. My impulse was to finish the rest right then and there but I remembered that I should probably try the other two things sitting in front of me.
So next I sampled the conchos. It was not quite as sweet as the donut, and there was a distinct undertone in the
flavor that I can’t exactly describe. At this point I realized that it must be called a conchos because the pink decorations on the surface made it look like a conch shell.
Finally, I tried the coconut pastry. The bready part wasn’t all that sweet aside from the coconut flakes on top, but the custard in the middle was creamy and delicious. Being a coconut person, I loved it.
My photographer and I finished all three between us with no shame whatsoever, and once I was done I hardly remembered being disappointed about not being able to get anything chocolate. The issue was that as I finished I realized how crumbly the pastries had been. The bakery did not offer any plates, so I had set my donuts on the plastic bag the employee had put them in. There was sugar all over my hands and probably my face, which is to say nothing of the crumbs all over the table. My one complaint about Bonito Michoacan is that their napkins are definitely not big enough.
After a lackluster job of sweeping the crumbs into the plastic bag, we selected two chocolate-frosted donuts to take home for our respective siblings. Had I not been stuffed with I-don’t-even-want-to-know-how-many calories, my brothers would have received a slab of chocolate frosting with all the donut eaten out from underneath. Seriously, this stuff was tasty.
I left Bonito Michoacan wishing there was a place like it closer to my house so I could go back more often. But in spite of the 18-minute drive, I will probably end up going back way sooner than I should with all the people who put in requests for baked goods. And we will probably eat enough pastries to feed a starving third-world country, without any guilt. It’s hard to regret eating massive donuts when they’re one dollar apiece.