(This post has been updated from the original July 2014 version to provide a better experience for you)
When it comes to homemade doughnuts, this right here is that Daddy of all recipes. Light, moist and altogether more easy to make than you’d ever think – these doughnuts are pure perfection! Making dough may seem like a slow process but, just like my danish pastries (remember those?! YUM!), some things really are worth waiting for.
Want to impress everyone with your kitchen skills?
I remember on an episode of The Great British Bake off where the contestants had to make doughnuts for the technical challenge. The one thing that stuck in my mind was Paul Hollywood saying, “The main thing I’m looking for is a white ring around the middle. It’s the sign of a good doughnut.”
I was aiming for that elusive white ring… and guess what? I got it! Actually incredibly proud of myself – they came out far better than I’d hoped! It also turns out – they’re not really that difficult to make. Win!
Oh and, just like my EPIC fluffy vegan pancakes, they’re greatly superior to any that you can buy in the shops. Let me say that again – you cannot buy doughnuts this good. Trust me here. You absolutely need to give these a go!
If you’ve not made doughnuts before, don’t worry! I’ve got you covered with some helpful tips…
Here is what you will need to make 12 large doughnuts.
(For a printer friendly version, see the recipe card at the end of this post)
Or for an Iced Glaze:
In a large bowl, briefly rub together the flour (500g | 3 + 1/4 Cups), caster sugar (50g | 1/4 Cup), yeast (7g | 2 tsp) & salt (10g | 1 + 3/4 tsp). Put the yeast & salt on opposite sides of the bowl.
Using the tips of your fingers & thumbs – rub in the butter (50g | 1/4 Cup) until you get a breadcrumb like consistency.
Make a well in the centre and add the milk (275g | 1 + 1/4 Cup) & eggs (2 Large). Mix with a fork (or your hands) until there is no more flour visible and everything has been incorporated. Yes, this is a very wet dough.
Cover with cling film & leave to rest for 30 minutes. It should look a little more plump than before.
Tip out onto a work surface & knead (with the help of a dough scraper) for about 10-20 minutes. It depends on your technique as to how long it will actually take but you’re aiming for a soft dough that will pass the windowpane test. I know it’s wet and it seems like it will never improve but it will, trust me. Do your best to not add any extra flour if you can help it.
When it’s ready, place the dough back into the bowl and allow to prove for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. (Until about doubled in size.)
At this point you can put it in the fridge overnight which actually helps to develop a much better flavour. If you do this, allow it to sit at room temperature before using as the cold will slow down the next process. Alternatively, you could just go ahead and use it straight away.
Prepare 1 or 2 large baking trays by covering in cling film & greasing with oil.
Tip the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a ‘sausage’. Divide the dough into 12 equal portions & shape into balls. (James Morton’s book Brilliant Bread has an excellent guide to shaping breads.)
Then poke a hole in the middle of each one and stretch out by rotating your hands. (A bit like if you were starting the Saturday Night Fever dance.)
Place them onto the prepared baking sheets, cover with a slightly damp tea towel and allow to prove for another hour.
Meanwhile, get your oil ready.
If you have a deep fat fryer – great. If not, it doesn’t matter. I used a large, heavy based saucepan and it worked just as well.
Heat the oil to 170°C. Once it has reached this temperature, turn the heat down to stop it from climbing any further. Then regularly check with a thermometer to ensure the temperature is holding steady. (If using a deep fat fryer, it should hold the temperature for you without having to change any settings or check with a thermometer.)
Your doughnuts are ready to be fried when you can poke it lightly and the dough springs back all the way.
Fry each doughnut for approx 2 minutes on each side. Then, using a slotted spoon, to transfer to a plate covered in kitchen roll to absorb any excess oil.
At this point you can do either one of the following options:
For both options – allow to cool before eating.
And that’s it! You have your very own unbelievably delicious homemade doughnuts ready to devour…
I know I’ve said it before but these doughnuts are honestly SOOOO much better than the ones you can buy. They’re so light & fluffy on the inside and beautifully golden and inviting on the outside. One of the best home made breads you can attempt in my opinion!
Got the bread making flavour and want more? Why not try making hot cross buns next?
I LOVE it when you share what you’ve made! You can get in touch by leaving a comment below, tagging me on social media or sending me an email. I don’t mind how, I just love hearing from you!
Theses are best eaten on the day for best flavour and texture.
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As featured on Julia’s Simply Southern Meal Plan Monday #191
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