A Kitchen First for me - Real Donuts!

This month I tried something for the first time and I'm not exaggerating when I say it has changed our weekends. REAL DONUTS. I'm fairly comfortable in the kitchen, but deep frying and yeasted donuts felt like the final frontier. The idea of heating oil, keeping it at a steady temperature, making the perfect yeasted donut dough, figuring out how to shape them without buying a separate tool, and not burning myself in the process felt impossible. 

I own a donut pan and have made dozens of variations of cake donuts, but at the end of the day those are really just muffins or cake in the shape of a donut. They're not the donuts I happily pay $4 each for from local bakeries, nor the ones I crave on a regular basis. When my friend Aimee shared her recipe for yeasted, fried donuts, and she promised it was easier than we thought, she was right. And the best part is, a batch of probably 30 donuts (and donut holes, aka Timbits IYKYK) cost around $4, the price of one gourmet donut here in Montreal. 

After making the dough - recipe found here - I shaped the donuts with a large biscuit cutter and a much smaller biscuit cutter (they came in a set) which I already had. You could also use a large glass to cut the donuts and forego the holes if you wanted, or you could buy an actual donut cutter. I try not to have single-use tools in the kitchen, but go for it! 

Then, I fried half the batch in my Dutch oven which was filled with 6 cups of vegetable oil, heated to 350 degrees. I froze the second half (15 donuts) for another weekend and saved the 6 cups of oil in the Dutch oven all week. I just put the lid on it and put it on the corner of the stove I never use (why do we all have these!?) 

The next weekend all I had to do was take out the frozen donuts, let them come to room temp (about an hour), and fry them. Much less labour-intensive than the week before! See how much they puff up once they've been fried!

The glaze is my favourite part. You can't go wrong with a simple glaze, I say! I'll be trying other glazes in the weeks to come, but for now we've settled on Clementine and Maple. Both amazing, clementine probably being the favourite. Just whisk together every ingredient and dip the cooled donuts on the glaze. Double dipping is encouraged!

Clementine Glaze - juice of 1 clementine + 2 tb heavy cream + 1/2 cup icing sugar 
Maple Glaze - 1 tb maple syrup + 2 tb heavy cream + 1/2 cup icing sugar

Making my own real donuts feels like such an accomplishment, as deep frying has intimidated me for years! It's much easier than it seems, and I'm so glad I gave it a go. It will save us quite a lot of money, as now I swear I'll never buy donuts out again, and it's just such a delicious treat to welcome the weekend with. Truly, these will be a family staple FOREVER. 

Moral of the story - try new, scary things in the kitchen (and in life!) and donuts are always a good idea!

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