Friday, May 08, 2020


The first doughnut I ever remember eating was at a seaside resort, and it was a freshly made doughnut, full of molten chocolate, rolled in granulated sugar. It was delicious. My doughnut preferences have changed since then, admittedly, and now I like them with jam, liberally dusted with icing sugar.
These little beauties are supremely soft and flavourful, filled with plenty of rosehip jam, and rolled into icing sugar. A true feast for the senses. They are also baked, not deep-fried. That, along with the custard powder in them, gives them a cakey doughnut texture, which I particularly enjoy.
Soft, fragrant, and rich, they are a true delight with a cup of afternoon coffee. And they are particularly indulgent still warm, while the sugar is sticky and still slightly melting into them. Such a moreish, effortless little treat.

450 grams plain flour
40 grams custard powder
15 grams sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
½ teaspoon fresh lemon zest
1 teaspoon dark rum
200 millilitres warm water
100 grams thick buttermilk
45 millilitres vegetable oil, divided
25 grams fresh yeast
250 grams tangy jam
100 grams icing sugar, sifted

Crumble the fresh yeast into a large bowl and pour the warm water over it. Add in the sugar, whisk briefly, and then leave it in a warm place for about 15 minutes, so the yeast can activate. Once the yeast is ready, add in the buttermilk and 30 millilitres of oil, and whisk well. Sift in all of the custard powder along with half of the flour, and the vanilla, lemon zest, and rum, and whisk really well. The dough will resemble a fragrant, thick batter at this point. Add in the rest of the flour, and mix briskly with a wooden spoon, until the dough starts to pull away from the sides of the bowl. Lightly flour the work surface and knead the dough by hand until it becomes silky and smooth, and springs back when pressed.
Place it into a large bowl, cover with a kitchen towel, and leave it to rise for about an hour in a warm spot, or until doubled in size. Once doubled, press the dough onto the work surface to release all of the air, and then roll it out to a rectangle about a centimetre thick. Using a larger circular cutter (8 cm), cut out 16 doughnuts, and arrange them on a baking sheet lined with baking parchment, with about 5 cm between them. Cover with a kitchen towel and let them rise for about 30 minutes. Just before baking, brush them with a touch of vegetable oil, and bake in a preheated oven, at 200°C, for 10-12 minutes. They should not take a lot of colour. Leave them to cool down for about 10-15 minutes, then fill with jam, and roll in icing sugar. Yields 16 servings.

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