Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Homemade Donuts!


I recently tried something new... homemade doughnuts!  I was so scared and worried that they would not turn out well, but they were yummy!  These are yeast donuts (there are yeast and cake donuts; I like yeast donuts, particularly maple bars). The recipe is pretty easy, but the frying in oil is what makes it seem a little daunting.  Would I make them again?  Yes!  Would I make them weekly?  No.  Once a month?  Totally!  

This batch makes about 16-17 donuts, plus donut holes (also depends on the size you roll and cut them out).  They DO NOT keep well at all (they were gross the next morning), so if you aren't going to eat a whole batch, I would recommend cutting this recipe in half for sure!

Since I did not originally plan on posting this on my blog, I did not take pictures during the process.  It's pretty self-explanatory though, so don't worry too much!

Also, I do not own a deep fryer or a dutch oven.  So, I just filled a pot with about 2" oil for frying.  It worked wonderfully!


Here is Alton Brown's Yeast Donut Recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 1/2 ounces vegetable shortening, approximately 1/3 cup
  • 2 packages instant yeast
  • 1/3 cup warm water (95 to 105 degrees F)
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 23 ounces all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting surface
  • Peanut or vegetable oil, for frying (1 to 1/2 gallons, depending on fryer)

Directions:
"Place the milk in a medium saucepan and heat over medium heat just until warm enough to melt the shortening. Place the shortening in a bowl and pour warmed milk over. Set aside.
In a small bowl, sprinkle the yeast over the warm water and let dissolve for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, pour the yeast mixture into the large bowl of a stand mixer and add the milk and shortening mixture, first making sure the milk and shortening mixture has cooled to lukewarm. Add the eggs, sugar, salt, nutmeg, and half of the flour. Using the paddle attachment, combine the ingredients on low speed until flour is incorporated and then turn the speed up to medium and beat until well combined. Add the remaining flour, combining on low speed at first, and then increase the speed to medium and beat well. Change to the dough hook attachment of the mixer and beat on medium speed until the dough pulls away from the bowl and becomes smooth, approximately 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a well-oiled bowl, cover, and let rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size.
On a well-floured surface, roll out dough to 3/8-inch thick. Cut out dough using a 2 1/2-inch doughnut cutter or pastry ring and using a 7/8-inch ring for the center whole. Set on floured baking sheet, cover lightly with a tea towel, and let rise for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oil in a deep fryer or Dutch oven to 365 degrees F. Gently place the doughnuts into the oil, 3 to 4 at a time. Cook for 1 minute per side. Transfer to a cooling rack placed in baking pan. Allow to cool for 15 to 20 minutes prior to glazing, if desired."


I did a few different glazes.  Here are the ones I made:

Chocolate Glaze:
1 1/2 cups. powdered sugar
4 TBL cocoa powder 
3 TBL milk
2 tsp vanilla

Regular Glaze:
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3-4 TBL milk
2 tsp vanilla

Maple Glaze:
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp maple extract
3 TBL milk

Raspberry Glaze:
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. raspberry extract
3 TBL milk
A couple drops red food coloring

Top with sprinkles, coconut flakes, etc. If you are doing a half batch, you will probably want to cut the glazes in half, too.  

Overall, I think these were REALLY good.  Since it was my first try at this, and I wasn't exactly sure how long to fry the donuts in the oil, some came out a little over or under done.  But, truly, even those were still tasty!  Experiment with the timing (how hot your oil is will also determine how fast they cook).  Just make sure they are a nice light golden color, but don't over-do it ;)

Enjoy!

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