This is going to be one of those quick and down and dirty posts. I’ve already been called a sadist and a vixen for my fluffy, doughnut teasing ways on Instagram and Facebook today. So, since fried dough, especially when covered in chocolate and sprinkles, needs no further ado, well, let ’em rip! Happy National Doughnut Day (which incidentally is Benny’s first birthday!)
I promised to get this recipe out to you ASAP so here it is, iPhone pics and all!
These doughnuts are light and fluffy without being airy and insubstantial. You’ll want to have a deep fry thermometer for the best, most consistent results.
While the recipe looks excessively long it’s because I’ve included a lot of hints and tips I’ve learned over the last several years making doughnuts at home. If you read the directions you’ll see it has more to do with little tricks than difficulty.
Since I just typed all this from memory on my phone while sitting at Cole’s gymnastics practice if you see something that makes no sense before I can proof this against my notes at home, please let me know!
In case it helps I’ve included a collage of the process from dough to doughnut below. I hope you love this recipe as much as I do!
Raised Yeast Doughnuts
Adapted from Betty Crocker’s Old-Fashioned Cookbook
- 5-6 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon instant yeast
- 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 14 oz (1 3/4 cup) very warm (120 to 130 degree) milk
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 tablespoons shortening
- Oil for frying
- Cinnamon & Sugar for topping or
- Chocolate Glaze or Sugar Glaze recipe from Alton Brown
- In the bowl of a stand mixer with dough hook stir together the 5 cups of the flour, the sugar, yeast and salt.
- In a small saucepan heat the milk with the butter and shortening until melted.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs and vanilla.
- Add the milk a little at a time while whisking to the eggs and vanilla to temper the eggs.
- Turn the mixer speed on low and pour in the milk and egg mixture to combine. Stop the motor a couple of times and use a spatula to scrape the flour down into the bowl. Once most of the flour has been mixed in turn the speed up to medium and knead the dough until it comes together and goes from a shaggy mess to a smooth, very soft dough, adding enough of the remaining flour to the bowl as needed to help the dough smooth out and start to pull away from the sides – kneading will take about 5 to 6 minutes.
- Scrape the dough out of the bowl onto a generously floured surface and knead a couple more times to bring together into a ball.
- Place the dough ball into a large, lightly oiled bowl, turning once to coat it on all sides.
- Cover lightly with a clean tea towel and let rise till doubled in size, about 30-40 minutes depending on the temperature of your kitchen.
- Turn the dough out onto the generously floured surface again and press the bubbles out gently and flatten the dough to a generous 1/2-inch thick.
- Use a doughnut cutter or a large circle cutter and small circle to cut out the doughnuts. Repeat with the scraps, putting them into another ball gently and allow that to rest 10 minutes before rolling and cutting again.
- Place the cut doughnuts and doughnut holes on a lightly floured piece of parchment and cover them with a clean towel.
- Allow the doughnuts to rise for 20 minutes before starting to hear the oil.
- To prepare the oil use a large Dutch oven or heavy pot and fill it with enough oil to come up at least 5-inches up the sides.
- Clip a deep fry thermometer on the side and turn the heat on under the pot to medium heat. Heat the oil to about 350 degrees F. For higher altitudes decrease the oil temperature by 3 degrees per thousand feet above sea level and increase the cooking time by a few seconds at a time and watch the temperature carefully.
- Once the oil reaches your desired temperature The easiest way to ruin the dough is to have oil that is too hot and burns the outside before the inside has a chance to cook. I cooked mine at around 340 degrees (I live at about 4,000 ft) for about 65 seconds per side. If you are cooking at 350 degrees it will take closer to 55 to 60 seconds per side.
- To move the doughnuts to the fryer use a wide, thin spatula to lift them carefully without deflating them.
- To fry the doughnuts only cook two at a time (or 5 doughnut holes) so you don’t overcrowd or change your oil temperature too much. Cook them as directed above in the temperature instructions – the oil will only sizzle a bit but they are cooking – and remove them from the oil promptly to drain on a baking sheet lined with a clean, brown paper bag, cooling rack or paper towels.
- Allow them to cool to just warm before touching so you don’t burn your hands.
- Then you can toss them in a bit of cinnamon and sugar (or cinnamon mixed with regular sugar and dark brown sugar) while still warm.
- Or use one of the glaze recipes listed above.
- Depending on the size of the cutters you use you’ll get about a dozen large doughnuts and holes. (I used an almost 4-inch round cutter and a 1-inch pastry tip for the inside hole.