Doughnuts

Photo and recipe from the book American Bakery, © Gribaudo 2012.
Photo by Emilio Scoti, styling by Luisa Girola.

I couldn’t resist posting at least ONE of the recipes from my new cookbook, American Bakery, just in case any of you need more convincing to run out and buy it. I’ve had a lot of requests for this recipe and after trying my hand with several different versions, I was finally able to come up with the perfect homemade doughnuts. They require a bit of time and effort but are a fun project for a lazy sunday, and the results are disastrously, dangerously delicious.

A few more words about the new book: I am extremely proud of the fanciful photography on every page which is the delightful result of my husband and photographer, Emilio Scoti’s, meticulous eye meeting the whimsical aesthetics of food stylist Luisa Girola. It was great fun and hugely productive to work with such a creative and inspired team, and I think the resulting pictures speak for themselves. Click here to see a few more photos from the new book.

Ok, enough self-promotion and on with the recipe… Enjoy!

Doughnuts

For the dough

  • 1 tablespoon (7 g) active dry yeast, divided
  • 3 1/4 cups (450 g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole milk (240 ml), at room temperature
  • 4 tablespoons (60 g) butter, at room temperature
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons (30 g) sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 2 quarts peanut oil (for frying)
  • 1 3-inch round cookie-cutter
  • 1 1-inch round cookie-cutter
  • various sprinkles and decorations

Makes 14-16 doughnuts

In a medium bowl, dissolve the yeast into 2 tablespoons warm water and let rest for 5 minutes.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook attachment, combine the flour with the milk, butter, egg yolks, sugar, spices and yeast dissolved in water. Mix until smooth, about 5 minutes, then transfer the dough to a large, lightly greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap, then a clean dishcloth. Let it rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 – 1.5 hours.

Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to 1/2 inch thick. With a doughnut or cookie cutter, cut out 3-inch-diameter rounds with 1-inch-diameter holes. Transfer the doughnuts and holes to a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, cover with a clean dishcloth and let rise until they double in size, about 30-40 minutes.

To test whether the dough is ready, touch lightly with a fingertip. If it springs back immediately, it needs more time. If it springs back slowly, it is ready. If it doesn’t spring back at all, it has overproofed; you can punch it down and reroll it once.

While the doughnuts are proofing, heat a heavy-bottomed pot with all the oil until a deep-fat thermometer registers 360?F. With a metal spatula, carefully place the doughnuts in the oil. Fry for 1 to 2 minutes per side, or until light golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon, drain on a wire rack over a paper towel, and let cool slightly before glazing.

Glazes

For the classic glaze

  • 1 1/2 cups (180 g) powdered sugar
  • 2-3 tablespoons of milk
Place the powdered sugar in a small bowl and slowly add the milk, stirring constantly con a whisk.
For the chocolate glaze
  • 1 1/2 cups (180 g) powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup (25 g) cocoa powder
  • 2-3 tablespoons of milk
Place the powdered sugar and cocoa powder in a small bowl and slowly add the milk, stirring constantly con a whisk.

For the creamy glaze

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons (20 g) butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups (180 g) powdered sugar
  • 2-3 Tablespoons of hot water
  • food coloring in gel (optional)

Mix the melted butter with the powdered sugar, then slowly add the hot water until reaching desired consistency. If using, add a small amount of food coloring and mix well.

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