If you want to enjoy the taste of traditional doughnuts without standing over a pan of hot oil to cook them, this is a great recipe for you.
- 2 packages dry yeast (about 35 grams of fresh, or 2 scant Tablespoons
- 1/4 cup warm water
- 1-1/2 cups milk, scalded and cooled
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
- 2 eggs
- 1/3 cup shortening
- 4-1/2 cups flour
In a large mixer bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add milk, sugar, salt, spice, eggs, shortening and 2 cups flour. Blend 1/2 minute at medium speed, scraping bowl occasionally. Stir in remaining flour until smooth, scraping sides of bowl. Cover. Let rise in warm place until double (50 to 60 minutes).
Turn dough onto well-floured cloth-covered board; roll around lightly to coat with flour. Dough will be soft to handle.
With floured, stockinet-covered rolling pin, gently roll dough about ½ inch thick. Cut with floured 2-1/2 inch doughnut cutter. Lift doughnuts carefully with spatula and place 2 inches apart on greased cookie sheet. Brush doughnuts with melted butter. Cover; let rise until double (about 20 minutes).
Heat oven to 420° F. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until golden. Immediately brush with melted margarine or butter and shake in Cinnamon Sugar or spread with Creamy Glaze (recipes below). Makes 1-1/2 to 2 dozen doughnuts.
Toppings (best if made while doughnuts are baking):
1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
Melt 1/3 cup butter. Blend in 2 cups powdered sugar and 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla. Stir in 4 to 6 Tablespoons water, one at a time, until melted glaze is of proper consistency.
Note: It's true; the dough does not have to be kneaded. This gives an extremely light and loose dough. I did not use a cloth or stockinet; a floured surface and floured rolling pin were sufficient. With the dough so light, a feather touch rolls it out. Nonetheless, the doughnuts rolled out from the "scraps" of dough did come out thicker and nicer.
I did not brush them with butter either before or after baking, with no apparent harm (since I was using glaze instead of cinnamon sugar). As far as the glaze is concerned, I went for a thinner version and simply dunked each doughnut in it.
Final verdict: They may look a bit like bagels, but they taste as doughnuts should.