Sunday Morning Yum Yums: It’s time to make the donuts…
(aka: …I already made the donuts; aka: Kill your diet)
N. and I really like to make something fun for Sunday morning breakfasts. Typically, that something usually involves potatoes, cheese and onions, or something that could easily be called a classic Sunday morning breakfast. In a departure from that motif, we decided to try our hand at donut making.
Now, if you’ve seen donut making on TV or in real life, you’ve probably got in your mind a deep fryer, some chocolate shellack and rainbow sprinkles. We didn’t quite go down that road. Instead, we opted for the baked variety with good old fashioned sugar and cinnamon. OK, we probably would have done the whole deep-fried thing, were we set up for it. However, N. found this recipe from Heidi at 101cookbooks, and it seemed easy and sounded tasty.
Since the recipe enabled us to make some really good tasty treats, I’ve straight ripped it off from whence it came.
The things you’ll need:
1 1/3 cups warm milk, 95 to 105 degrees (divided)
1 packet active dry yeast (2 1/4 teaspoons)
2 tablespoons butter
2/3 cup sugar
5 cups all-purpose flour (alternately, white whole wheat might work – haven’t tried it yet)
A pinch or two of nutmeg, freshly grated
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
Place 1/3 cup of the warm milk in the bowl of an electric mixer. Stir in the yeast and set aside for five minutes or so. Be sure your milk isn’t too hot or it will kill the yeast. Stir the butter and sugar into the remaining cup of warm milk and add it to the yeast mixture. With a fork, stir in the eggs, flour, nutmeg, and salt – just until the flour is incorporated. With the dough hook attachment of your mixer beat the dough for a few minutes at medium speed. This is where you are going to need to make adjustments – if your dough is overly sticky, add flour a few tablespoons at a time. Too dry? Add more milk a bit at a time. You want the dough to pull away from the sides of the mixing bowl and eventually become supple and smooth. Turn it out onto a floured counter-top, knead a few times (the dough should be barely sticky), and shape into a ball.
Transfer the dough to a buttered (or oiled) bowl, cover, put in a warm place (I turn on the oven at this point and set the bowl on top), and let rise for an hour or until the dough has roughly doubled in size.
Punch down the dough and roll it out 1/2-inch thick on your floured countertop. Most people (like myself) don’t have a doughnut cutter, instead I use a 2-3 inch cookie cutter to stamp out circles. Transfer the circles to a parchment-lined baking sheet and stamp out the smaller inner circles using a smaller cutter. If you cut the inner holes out any earlier, they become distorted when you attempt to move them. Cover with a clean cloth and let rise for another 45 minutes.
Bake in a 375 degree oven until the bottoms are just golden, 8 to 10 minutes – start checking around 8. While the doughnuts are baking, place the butter in a medium bowl. Place the sugar and cinnamon in a separate bowl.
Remove the doughnuts from the oven and let cool for just a minute or two. Dip each one in the melted butter and a quick toss in the sugar bowl. Eat immediately if not sooner.
Makes 1 1/2 – 2 dozen medium doughnuts.
Don’t over bake these, if anything, under bake them a bit – they will continue baking outside the oven for a few minutes. You want an interior that is moist and tender – not dry. Also, be sure to cut big enough holes in the center of your doughnuts – too small and they will bake entirely shut. Remember they rise, and they rise even more when they are baking. These really need to be made-to-order, but you can make and shape the dough the night before if you want to serve them for brunch. Instructions: after shaping, place doughnuts on baking sheet, cover and place in the refrigerator overnight. Pull them out an hour before baking, and let rise in a warm place before baking.
If you’re thinking about totally blowing off your diet, or you’re just looking for something different to quench your sweet tooth, give these a shot. We liked them, we hope you do too:)