yeast-raised doughnuts + chocolatey glaze


Donut judge me for posting a doughnut recipe a meer few weeks after the New Year. These yeast-based doughnuts are fluffy on the inside and crispy on the outside. Dipping them in a cocoa glaze was the wisest thing I have ever done. As for the random sprinkles, who needs a reason to celebrate?

All my life, doughnuts were “meh”. That’s because the donuts I was accustomed to were Dunkin. Then one adult day, I ordered fresh donuts from a local bakery. Just for kicks. My eyes were opened, donuts are DA BOMB. From that day forward, I can honestly say I love donuts.

My favorite kind of doughnuts are yeast based, rather than cake. They are fluffy and bread-like rather than moist like a pound cake. They are more interesting and more rewarding. Like any type of yeast based dough, these babies take some time to proof, but the pay off is worth it.

You live and you learn. After shaping my doughnuts by hand, I did some research and found that some recipes suggest using a biscuit cutter to form perfect circles. I chose to hand form them by rolling out a cylinder and connecting the ends into a circle. This is what gives them their lumpy luster (wink wink). Ready?

ingredients

Doughnuts

  • 3 cups bread flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 cups canola oil

Chocolate Glaze

  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

directions

  1. To make the dough: Warm the milk in the microwave proof cup until warm to the touch (about 30 seconds to 1 minute). Mix in yeast and 1 tsp sugar. Let stand for 10 minutes until it foams.
  2. In a bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together other dry ingredients. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, milk, melted butter, and vanilla. Add all ingredients, including milk with yeast into the stand mixer bowl. Mix until the dough is soft. Cover and let rest for 5 minutes.
  3. Knead the dough with a dough hook or your hands after its rest for 6 to 8 minutes, until it’s smooth and soft. Place the dough in a greased bowl, turn it over to coat the top, cover, and let it rise for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until doubled. (A trick: Cover with a damp towel and put in an oven that is turned off).
  4. To shape the doughnuts: Deflate the dough and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Gently roll it 1/4″ thick, and cut out doughnuts with a 2 1/2″ to 3″ round cutter. Poke a hole in the middle with your finger. Cover loosely with greased plastic wrap and let the doughnuts rise for 30 minutes to an hour, until doubled.
  5. To fry: Heat the oil in a heavy frying pan or skillet to 350°F. Carefully place the doughnuts in the oil, 2 or 3 at a time, and fry until golden brown. Turn over and cook the second side; each side should take no more than a minute. Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and drain on absorbent paper.
  6. Make the glaze: Mix the sugar and cocoa powder in a medium bowl. Slowly stir in the milk and vanilla, a little at a time, to make a smooth, pourable glaze. Dip cooled doughnuts in the glaze.
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