I made doughnuts! More specifically, I set out to make jelly doughnuts.
Now, I’m usually a classic chocolate doughnut gal. My sister would always get powdered and my brother would get jelly. So it wasn’t until I worked part-time at this law firm a couple of years ago that I was turned on to jelly doughnuts. Every Friday they would offer Noah’s bagels and doughnuts in the break room, a day I dubbed “Carboload Fridays.” I would toast an asiago bagel, top it with strawberry shmear, then treat myself to half of a chocolate old fashioned. But one fateful day, when there were only glazed or jelly filled doughnuts to choose from, I decided to try a jelly doughnut, and I never looked back. Thank God I only worked at this place for three months or else I would look like a jelly doughnut. Like Violet, you’re turning violet, but Mary, you’re turning Mar…ion berry jam filled doughnut.
I had seen this recipe on pinterest for jelly doughnuts, and since I had the means to deep fry, I thought I’d give it a try! This past summer, my wonderful friend, Erika, was moving and had no room for her seldom used mini deep fryer so I gladly took it off her hands! It’s called the FryDaddy, no joke. But I affectionately like to refer to it as Mr. FryDaddy.
I have been hesitant to make doughnuts solely because of the yeast. I had a bad experience making focaccia bread a few months ago. I followed the recipe exactly but the dough never rose! It was flat like a cracker! But I thought of a couple factors that may have spoiled my first experience in bread making. 1. I killed the yeast! The directions say to use warm water, but really that can mean room temperature. The yeast is alive! It lives! And water that is too hot can kill it and its rising powers. I turned my faucet to the left and fed my yeast the hottest water the tap had to offer. I killed my yeast. 2. My yeast had expired 😦 The expiration date said March 2014 and I was using it in June 2014. It was in a jar. I read that a jar like that, once opened should be refrigerated in between uses. So in conclusion, my yeast was dead before I even started.
But this time was sure to be different! I used an individual packet of active dry yeast and tepid tap water. It worked!
What a beautiful doughy miracle! So I combined the yeast with warm milk, flour, salt, sugar, nutmeg, eggs, and oil. The recipe called for a lot of kneading, preferably with a kitchen aid mixer (hm, don’t I wish) but the next best thing I had were these twist-y attachments for my handheld mixer. I mixed on high for five minutes and formed a dough!
Then, the dough was covered, and I waited rather impatiently for an hour and a half.
Can you believe how much that grew?? Science!
Next, I transferred the dough to a well-floured work surface and rolled it out to 1/4″ thickness. I wasn’t quite sure how large to make the circles. The recipe said to use the bottom of a glass but everyone has different size glasses! Regardless, my “mini” jelly doughnuts turned out to be regular sized doughnuts, once fried. The bottom of the glass I used had about an inch and a half diameter.
Now comes the jelly! The recipe said to put 2 teaspoons of jam on one circle of dough then top with another circle of dough and, “FIRMLY SEAL EDGES TOGETHER!” Hell no. I could barely fit a 1/4 teaspoon on each circle! And I worked and worked to seal those edges together as firmly as I could, but to no avail! That dough did not want to stick together. Most of the doughnuts opened up mid-frying! It was mildly terrifying. Hey, I’m still learning my way around a FryDaddy. One of the only doughnuts that did stay sealed was my very first one! But after following the instructions to fry for 5 minutes per side, I had completely burned it! I have a feeling the temperature of my oil was up too high and maybe my doughnut circles were too small (I tell ya, varying household glass sizes). I ended up only frying each side for a couple minutes.
I used this amazing strawberry jam my Mom made this past summer. It is fantastic…on toast! In doughnuts? Not so much. I forgot that I am not much of a fan of strawberry jelly doughnuts, strictly raspberry. Also, the jam was too runny for the dough which may have caused a lot of them to open up in the process.
I started to get a rhythm going and switched over to raspberry jam which was thicker and held up better once the edges were sealed.
Despite the doughnuts opening during the frying process, they were still really good! Obviously absent of jam, but they were covered in powdered sugar! The dough could really stand on it’s own, like a beignet. I would definitely use this doughnut recipe again.
My Mom and I got frustrated with the jam so we just switched over to regular old doughnuts.
These doughnut shapes meant doughnut holes! I sprinkled them in cinnamon sugar, and they were delish! I covered the others with the same chocolate glaze recipe from my chocolate roll post, which worked fine but needed two coats. And here are the final products!
Slowly fattening up my family one fried confection after another!