If you want to turn a prepared chocolate glaze into a frosting, let it cool to room temperature, so it becomes thicker. Then, using either a strong hand-held mixer or a heavy-duty stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, whip the glaze until it holds soft peaks, about 3 minutes, on a medium-high speed. Use a short, off-set metal spatula to apply the frosting, generously, to the tops of doughnuts.

Dark chocolate glaze or frosting

Yield: enough to glaze or frost about 24 doughnuts). Combine 4 ounces of chopped bittersweet chocolate and 5 ounces of chopped unsweetened chocolate in a bowl and pour over it, 1 1/3 cups of boiling hot evaporated milk or heavy cream. Let the chocolate sit, for just a few minutes, until it's melted, then stir the mixture until it's smooth. Transfer this to the bowl of a food processor, fitted with the steel blade and add a pinch of salt with 1 3/4 cups sugar, 1 stick (8 tablespoons) of softened and cubed unsalted butter and 1 1/2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract. Process the mixture until it's completely smooth. Use almost immediately, as a glaze, or let it cool to a spreading consistency then whip it and use it, as a frosting. (This glaze will remain fluid for the longest time if you use heavy cream but will thicken quicker to be turned into a frosting when using evaporated milk.)

Chocolate peanut butter glaze

Use this to coat the tops of 24 doughnuts. (If feeding a group, make sure there are no allergies to peanuts.) Bring 1 cup heavy cream to a simmer with 2/3 cup smooth peanut butter, stirring until homogenous but not over heated. Stir this into 24 ounces of chopped and melted semi-sweet chocolate with 2 tablespoons light corn syrup and 1 1/2 teaspoons of pure vanilla extract. Strain and use as a glaze while still fluid. Sprinkle the glaze with crushed salted cocktail peanuts. Store any leftover glaze in the refrigerator for up to 1 week and, once very chilled, make truffles! Just scoop it into large acorn size pieces and, after rolling them into balls, roll them in the powdered sugar toppings, as listed (either the one flavored with cinnamon or cocoa). Store the truffles in the refrigerator.

Vanilla Glaze

Yield: enough glaze to accommodate 24 doughnuts. Whisk together, 2 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar with 2 tablespoons milk, 2 tablespoon light corn syrup and 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract. If too dry, add more a few more drops of milk and corn syrup or, if too thin, add more sifted powdered sugar. When right, the mixture should be bright white, quite thick and very smooth and shiny. If it starts to set, re-warm briefly, in the microwave, uncovered. (For a colored glaze, Stir in 2 to 3 droplets of a pastel food coloring, like pink, yellow, mint green, light blue or violet. Stir the coloring in, drop by drop, until the desired color is achieved.) This is a glaze only, and is not meant to be whipped into a frosting.

Optional additions to chocolate or vanilla glaze: Add up to 1 scant teaspoon of a complimentary extract or flavor. If so, reduce the vanilla to 1/2 teaspoon.

Some flavor combinations:

Dark chocolate glaze: 1 scant teaspoon peppermint, hazelnut raspberry flavor extract

Additions to vanilla glaze, only:

A few drops of a pastel food coloring blended in with wooden craft sticks.

Optional additions to vanilla glaze:

Pale yellow glaze: banana extract (flavor). Pale pink glaze: strawberry, raspberry extract or peppermint (flavor). Mint green: spearmint extract (flavor)

Decorating Ideas for completely cooled doughnuts:

Dip tops of doughnuts in either the chocolate or vanilla glaze (left white or doubled and divided and each portion colored a different pale pastel). For a two-toned doughnut top, use a small offset metal spatula, placed over a bowl, to spread two different glazes, on half of the tops of each doughnut. For the most consistent color, apply the glaze to doughnuts twice, with 10 minutes in between each application.

To further decorate glazed doughnuts: Sprinkle glazed doughnuts with any of the following, soon after applying the glaze, before it sets:

Assorted jimmies (sprinkles), toasted coconut, plain shredded and sweetened coconut, a combination of both: plain and toasted coconut, ground chocolate wafer cookies, baby M & M's, crushed candy canes (or crush round hard peppermint candies, crushed salted cocktail peanuts. Or, after applying one glaze (twice), drizzle the tops with a glaze of a different color, letting it fall off the tines of a fork in an irregular pattern.

Simple "sugar-coating" ideas:

For freshly fried and barely warm and well drained doughnuts or those re-warmed in a preheated 350oF oven for 10 minutes and left to cool until barely warm.

1. Sifted powdered sugar and cinnamon: whisk 2 cups sifted powdered sugar with 1/4 cup ground cinnamon (or to taste). Place in a plastic bag.

2. Sifted powdered sugar and unsweetened cocoa: whisk 2 cups sifted powdered sugar with 1/4 cup Dutch-processed cocoa powder (or to taste). Place in a plastic bag.

3. Decorating sugar (in an assortment of vibrant colors): Grind three bottles, one at a time, in a spice grinder and place in a plastic bag.

4. Cinnamon Sugar: whisk 2 cups sugar with 1/4 cup ground cinnamon (or to taste). Place in a plastic bag.