Hot donuts are one of the wonders of the culinary world. The direct injection of fat and sugar, delivered by a vessel that has a filament-thin layer of crispy fried goodness on the outside, immediately giving way to a feather light interior is ridiculous, honestly. Nothing should be so good. Krispy Kreme has capitalized on this experience, making hot fat and sugar almost a religion. People will travel for MILES to get ahold of one of the little round miracles. What’s sad is that you can make them at home, like, easily. And in the time it takes you to check your email, heat up the espresso machine, and walk the dog, you’ll have your very own wheels of fortune. The effort? Slightly more than driving down the street to the glowing green sign of the Kreme. But not THAT much more, and if you make your own you don’t have to wear pants or wash the fossilized mascara out of the corners of your eyes.
Before you get all up in arms about this post, saying “you’ve posted about donuts before, you unoriginal prostitute!” let me say that these are different. I used a different recipe, different technique, and different glaze. The good news is that my new technique means that they don’t separate into that curlique shape, looking for all the world like dog doo. The great news is that this recipe is better than my old one, which was just leftover cinnamon roll dough. The best news is that I am not too lazy to share it with you. But first, some history.
When I was little, I got donuts fairly frequently. About every third Sunday, my dad would scuttle down to the Safeway and McDonalds lot to get breakfast. This was an incredibly special treat, as it meant both sugary pastries AND sausage biscuits. I always got a cake donut covered in some virulently-colored frosting and multicolored sprinkles. I was never really interested in the cake donut portion of the donut. So I’d eat off the top layer with all of the frosting and sprinkles, and find creative uses for the bland, leftover cake. The creative uses most often involved ants.
You see, in Colorado, there are two kinds of ants. We have the big red ants, which we know to steer clear of, and the tiny black ants, which are harmless and sweet and could scramble around the palm of your hand without doing anything harmful (like biting, stinging, or pooping). Down here in the state of Texas (State Motto: “America’s Taint”) there is only one kind of ant–ants to be feared. Because everyone knows big ants are trouble. I mean, they have VISIBLE pincers on their mouths. But then the tiny black ants are actually tiny BROWN ants, and they are called fire ants, and they will chase you and swarm up your legs and eat your body and soul without even stopping to say grace. I now hate ants.
Back then, though, I thought they were very intricate networks of my own personal friends. I’d pick them up, watch them work, and often feed them. So if I had leftover donut to give away, it didn’t go to my little brother; it went to the ants. I’d find an ant gathering of three or four scout ants, leave them a wad of cake that was roughly the size of an F-350 (in their many eyes), and then come back a few hours later to delight in watching the enormous ant pile (or “rave”) that had formed around my donut offering. At one point I was given an ant farm, which I also fed leftover cake donut, and they all died almost immediately. Apparently ants favor a balanced diet, with only occasional sweets. Oh well.
But I DON’T favor a balanced diet, which is why I ate 5 donuts this morning, as well as a few donut holes for good measure. You never waste the hole, as you well know. You just fry it and roll it in cinnamon-sugar. And you never waste the trimmings of dough, either. You can do all manner of things with it, but today I flattened it out, filled it with blueberries, sugar, and cardamon, rolled it up, cut slits in the top, and baked it until the blueberries oozed out of the golden brown crust. I sliced it on the bias for pretty. Then I drizzled that in frosting, and ate that for lunch. It’s sick, I know.
Sick and DELICIOUS. So here’s a reasonable copycat for Krispy Kreme glazed donuts. Or as I call these, Kristie Kremes. Enjoy!
1 1/4 t active dry yeast
1/4 C warm water
3/4 C warm milk
2 T sugar
2 C bread flour
2 T softened butter
1/2 t salt
1 egg, beaten
3″ vegetable oil for frying (in a fryer or a deep pan)
Directions: In a bread maker, load ingredients in the order of the ingredients list (except for the oil). Set your bread-maker on the “quick dough” setting, if you have the Zojirushi. If you don’t, just use your breadmaker guidelines from the manual of your model. Allow the dough to mix and rise, but not bake. This takes 38 minutes in our model. Remove the dough from the breadmaker, and place it on a well-floured counter or cutting board. Roll out the dough to 1/3 inch thickness (approximately). Cut out the donut circles using a large biscuit cutter. Then cut a circle from the middle using a smaller biscuit cutter. Separate the donuts, circles, and trimmings.
Heat your oil to 350 F. Drop a few donuts at a time into the hot oil. After about 30 seconds (when the bottoms are golden brown), use tongs or chopsticks to turn the donuts over. When they are golden brown on both sides, remove them safely from the oil and put them on a paper bag or paper towels to drain. Make your favorite glaze (we used powdered sugar, cream, and almond extract) and dip the donuts immediately. Place on a rack to drip until the other donuts are ready. Fry all of the donuts, then fry the circles (donut holes) and toss them in cinnamon-sugar. Done!
Then go work out, because donuts aren’t exactly weight-watchers approved.