The optimist sees the donut, the pessimist sees the hole.

Donuts are one of those treats that no one can deny, especially when they’re still warm. When I was in high school Krispy Kreme gave out free, hot off the line, donuts whenever the sign was lit at their store in Fort Wayne. They were not in business long, so share your donuts sparingly.

Making homemade donuts has always intrigued me, so today I did some googling and conquered the donut! Sprinkles are a must, so prepare accordingly. I used a mason jar to cut my circles and a wooden tool that one of my friend’s husband made, but a biscuit cutter and your finger (to make the hole in the middle) will also work.

   photo 3  photo 4photo 5kdfjascka 

Homemade Glazed Donuts

Makes about 8 donuts
Recipe via the Sophisticated Gourmet, via Lara Ferroni’s Cookbook, Doughnuts

The dough for this recipe can be made by hand, but expect a nice workout after you’re done making the dough.

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons active dry yeast
¾ cup of whole milk, heated to 110ºF
¾ cup bread flour

¼ cup whole milk, at room temperature

1 tablespoon yeast

2 tablespoons Superfine Sugar**
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 egg yolks, at room temperature
1 ¼ cups to 1 ¾ cups bread flour
½ stick unsalted butter, at room temperature

Vegetable oil for frying

**You can use granulated sugar, just follow the weight measurement or heap the two tablespoons.

Preparation:
1. In a medium bowl, dissolve 2 tablespoons of yeast into ¾ cup of milk. Add ¾ cup of flour and stir to create a smooth paste. Cover the flour mixture and let rest in a warm spot for 30 minutes.

2. Combine ¼ cup of room-temperature milk and 1 tablespoon of yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the rested flour mixture (from step 1) along with the sugar, salt, vanilla, and egg yolks. Mix until smooth. Turn off the mixer and add ½ cup of the remaining flour. Mix on low for about 30 seconds. Add the butter and mix until it becomes incorporated, about 30 seconds. Switch to a dough hook and add more flour, about ¼ cup at a time with the mixer turned off, kneading the dough at medium speed between additions, until the dough pulls completely away from the sides of the bowl and is smooth and not too sticky. It will be very soft and moist, but not so sticky that you can’t roll it out. You may have flour left over. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour (and up to 12 hours).

3. 20 minutes before taking the dough out, heat a heavy bottomed pot with at least 2 inches of oil until a deep-fat / candy thermometer registers 360ºF.

4. Line a baking sheet with a lightly floured non-terry dishtowel. Roll out the dough on a slightly floured surface to ½ inch thick. With a doughnut or cookie cutter (can use a glass, too) cut out 3-inch-diameter rounds with 1-inch-diameter holes (if you plan on filling the doughnuts with preserves, don’t cut out the holes).

5. Place the doughnuts on the baking sheet at least 1 inch apart and cover with plastic wrap. Let sit in a warm spot to proof until they almost double in size, 5 to 20 minutes, testing at five-minute intervals. 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 does not spring back at all, it has over proofed; no worries- you can punch it down and re-roll it once.

6. Once the doughnuts have proofed, using a metal spatula, carefully place the doughnuts in the oil. Fry for 1 to 2 minutes per side (for the doughnut holes, it might be less than 30 seconds a side, so keep an eye on them!), or until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon, drain on a wire rack over a paper towel, and let cool before glazing.

7. Prepare the glaze, recipes follow.

8. Glaze the doughnuts, cover them with sprinkles, cover the doughnuts in powdered sugar, or do a mix of each. Enjoy!

Chocolate Glaze

Ingredients:
1 ½ cups (150 grams) confectioners’ sugar, sifted to remove any lumps.
4 tablespoons (27 grams) cocoa powder
3 to 4 tablespoons milk or water
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract (optional)

Preparation:
Sift together the sugar and cocoa powder in a medium bowl. Slowly stir in the milk and vanilla, a little at a time, to make a smooth pourable glaze.

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