According to the calendar today is National Doughnut Day. What better day to make doughnuts. I've been thinking about doing a post on doughnuts and today's the day.
When we were little girls, Mom would buy doughnuts at Woolworth's. I loved to see that bakery box come in the door because I knew there would be a good variety of the tasty fried treats. Mom would often cut them in half or quarters so we could all have a taste of a particular one we all liked.
I don't remember Mom making doughnuts very often. I think she may have once or twice. Mom's favourite doughnut was yeast-raised as opposed to a cake doughnut. I liked them all but I believe I'm turning into my mother as I now favour the yeast-raised variety best. I'll still eat cake doughnuts as long as they aren't chocolate. I really don't enjoy chocolate doughnuts. (Should I duck as you throw things at me?)
So in honour of National Doughnut Day (and memories of those wonderful doughnuts from childhood), here's an easy potato yeast-rasied dough that produces a lovely light and tasty treat. If you want to make these, boil a large potato without any salt and mash it up when it's cooked. Save the potato water as it's used in the recipe. The potato keeps the doughnuts from becoming dry. (All doughnuts are best eaten the day they are made.)
Sugared Orange Yeast-Raised Doughnuts
½ cup unseasoned plain mashed potato
1 cup warm potato water (make up any missing potato water with plain water)
3¾ - 4¼ cups flour
2 packages instant yeast
¾ cup sugar
Grated rind of 2 large oranges
1 teaspoon orange extract
¼ cup very soft or melted butter
Fat for deep frying at 375 degrees.
Granulated sugar for coating
Add all ingredients to the bowl of a stand mixer. Use only 3 ¾ cups of flour. Mix on low speed until blended. Continue mixing 8-10 minutes, adding just enough flour to make a smooth, elastic dough that cleans the side of the bowl. Place the dough in an oiled bowl and let rise until double.
Turn dough out on a large floured surface. Roll to ½-inch thick and cut with a 3-inch doughnut cutter. Save the holes to fry as well or re-roll to make more doughnuts. Let the cut out doughnuts rise again until double.
A few minutes before the doughnuts are ready to fry, heat the oil to 375 degrees. If you don’t have a deep fat fryer use a heavy bottomed pot and don’t turn your back on the burner. OIL CAN OVERHEAT AND CAUSE A FIRE. You don’t want that.
Slide the doughnuts into the hot fat and fry until golden on each side. A wooden skewer or chopstick makes a great tool for turning doughnuts.
Drain on paper toweling. While still warm roll in granulated sugar to coat. When cool store in tightly covered container.
Make about 3 dozen doughnuts. Makes tons of doughnut holes.
If you do not have a stand mixer these can be made by hand. Follow the directions but use a spoon and your hands to mix.
Put all the ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer. Use the smallest amount of flour. Start mixing on very low.
Mix the dough until it cleans the sides of the bowl. Mix for 8-10 minutes until a smooth, elastic dough is formed.
Place dough in an oiled bowl and let rise until double.
Flatten dough and roll to a ½-inch thick. Cut with a 3-inch doughnut cutter. Re-roll any scraps but you can fry the doughnut holes.
Let the doughnuts rest and rise again until double.
Heat the oil in a deep fryer or heavy bottomed pot to 375 degrees. Please be careful if using a pot.
Slide a few doughnuts into the hot fat. Be careful not to splash that hot oil on your bare skin.
Use a wooden skewer or chopstick to turn and remove the doughnuts from the hot fat. Drain on paper toweling.
While still hot roll in granulated sugar.
A nice treat once-in-a-while.