Homemade Donuts

[recipe title="Homemade Donuts" time="2 hrs" difficulty="moderate" servings="6-8"]

Ingredients:

  • 5 cups of flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 4 tsp of instant rapid rise yeast
  • 1/4 cup of sugar
  • 1 tsp of freshly ground nutmeg(optional) do not use regular ground nutmeg if you must then just use 1/4 tsp
  • 2 cups of scalded milk
  • 5 tbsp of vegetable shortening

Directions:

Combine dry ingredients together. Whisk to incorporate.

In a small saucepan combine your milk and vegetable shortening and bring to a simmer (scald). Once your vegetable shortening has melted, turn off the heat. Let the milk cool down to lukewarm. Make sure your milk mixture is not to hot or you will kill the yeast and the dough will not rise. (around 100 degrees F)

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix with a dough hook for 10 minutes or so. This is a very wet dough but the dough should clear the sides of your mixer. If the dough does not clear the sides of the bowl and is still very wet then keep adding more flour 1/4 cup at a time, until you get the right consistency. If you do not have a mixer and are kneading by hand this high hydration dough needs to be mixed by the stretch and fold method. You can watch Peter Reinhardt explain this technique. Use pam instead of olive oil as Peter does since we are making a dessert dough olive oil will be ...well just weird :) That all said and done this dough is not an 80 %  hydration dough and it is not quite regular bread dough (60%). Without doing the baker's math right now I am going to guess-timate it to be around 68%  It should feel slightly tacky when you are done with the kneading.

Alright leave the dough rise for an hour in a greased bowl and cover the dough. I put plastic wrap right over my dough loosely then a tea towel on top of the bowl. The reason I do this is to prevent any of the dough from loosing moisture and developing a skin on top. After an hour take your dough and roll it out into a big rectangle approx 1/2 inch thick. Use two different size cookie cutters and start cutting out your donuts and holes :)

I also fried the donut holes and sprinkled them with powdered sugar when they come out. Yum. As you can see I also left some whole and piped in some jelly and lemon curd then dusted those with icing sugar as well.

Ok once all your donuts are cut out let them rise again till double in size.

In the meantime take out your fryer if you have one or else put vegetable oil in a heavy large pot, (dutch ovens work great). When you are ready to start cooking heat your oil to 375 degrees F.

Place 4 donuts (or however many will fit without overcrowding) If you overcrowd the donuts in the hot oil this will bring the temperature down drastically and your dough will absorb the oil and become greasy and heavy YUCK. So just a few at a time. The donuts will cook 1 min per side. Then let them cool on a wire rack.

The next step is the best step. Dip your donuts in whatever concoction suits your fancy or sprinkle with sugar, coconut etc. AND EAT!! YUM

I just used a little milk, icing sugar and few drops of vanilla extract to make my glaze. The chocolate glaze started off like the clear + chocolate chips and a pat of butter whisked over a double broiler until silky and shiny.

[/recipe]