One of Marty’s biggest dessert cravings is donuts. When we were first married, I used to make homemade donuts for him fairly regularly. He loves them and raves about them to whoever will listen to him. I admit that it’s been quite a while since I’ve made him donuts. Last week, he showed up with a box of donuts from the local donut shop, gave me a pitiful look, and said “It’s been forever since you made me donuts.” It definitely hasn’t been forever but it has been a long time.
Marty’s favorite type of donut is the old fashioned or cake donut. These donuts are made without yeast and they have a heavier texture than donuts made with yeast. Did you know that donuts first appeared in a cookbook in 1803? I have been using the same donut recipe for over twenty years. Our donuts are deep friend in oil and either dusted in granulated sugar or topped with a spread and sprinkles depending on how creative I am. My favorites are the ones with sugar but Marty has a sweet tooth and loves the donuts that are frosted.
Donuts can be frosted with a variety of different toppings. Sometimes we use a maple cream and other times we use a chocolate spread. You could probably even use frosting if you want to be completely decadent. Add sprinkles or colored sugar on top of the spread to make it festive for the holidays. My all time favorite is to simply roll the hot donuts around in granulated sugar. The sugar sticks to the donuts (and your fingers) and the taste is amazing while not being as sweet as a frosted donut. When I was asked to create a recipe using Tate & Lyle Sugars, I knew it was time to make the donuts.
How to Make Homemade Donuts
Heat the oil in a deep fryer or heavy pot with high sides. I’ve never used an exact temperature but if you flick a few drops of water into the hot oil and it sizzles, the oil is ready.
Mix all of the ingredients in a large bowl (details below) and then turn the dough onto a well floured board. You can add more flour until the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl and starts to look more smooth.
Roll the dough out to about 3/8 thick. Yes, I hate rolling dough which probably has something to do with why I haven’t made donuts in such a long time. Use a donut cutter to cut donuts into circles. If you don’t have one, use an upside down glass.
Find something smaller than your donut and cut the hole out of the middle of the donuts. Set it on a sheet of floured parchment paper until all of the donuts are cut out.
Carefully lift the donut and slide it into the hot oil with a spatula. The donut will rise to the surface when it is ready to flip over. Using a spatula or a fork, carefully flip the donut over. It takes about a minute on each side for them to be done properly. Don’t add too many donuts to the grease at once or you will lower the temperature of the grease and they won’t turn out as well. I generally do no more than two at a time. Lift the donuts out of the grease and let them drain on a paper towel.
If you want to cover them in granulated sugar, roll them around in it now while they are still hot. Tate + Lyle offers these varieties of fair trade certified sugars:
- Organic Pure Cane Sugar –This lightly refined sugar adds a subtle sweetness to any dish. For a perfect tea snack, treat party-goers to Pistachio Shortbread Cookies.
- Organic Turbinado Raw Cane Sugar –Enjoy the delicate molasses flavor and rich aroma. Its crystals give a superb added crunch –making it an ideal decorative topping for baked goods.
If you want to frost them, let them cool completely and them frost the tops and dip into colored sugar or sprinkles.
- 3⅓ cups flour (2 c white / 1⅓ c whole wheat)
- 1 cup Tate + Lyle Organic Pure Cane Sugar
- 3 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
- 2 tbsp shortening
- 2 eggs
- ¾ cup milk
- Oil to fry in
- Heat 2 to 3 inches of oil in a deep fat fryer or heavy kettle until a drop of water sizzles when you flick it into the oil.
- Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl until well combined.
- Turn dough onto a well floured board. You can add a piece of parchment paper to help prevent sticking if you like.
- Coat with flour. Roll carefully ⅜" thick.
- Cut circles with a donut cutter or the rim of a glass. Cut out the center with a smaller glass.
- Slide donuts into hot oil with a spatula.
- When they rise to the top, carefully flip them over. Cook about 1 minute on each side.
- Remove from the oil and drain on paper towels.
- If you want to coat them in sugar, roll the in Tate + Lyle Organic Pure Cane Sugar while they are still hot. If you want to frost them, let them cool completely first.