Since I remember, working with materials, transforming the mass and creating new shapes was my thing. Probably that’s why I was so hooked by ceramics. I was doing it for quite some time and enjoyed it a lot. I always liked that magic feeling when you get to transform your idea into something concrete, real, into a form that has a new meaning… But at a certain moment I actually stopped doing that. That was a mistake, but I haven’t yet said the final word! That’s for sure.
Maybe that is why I like working with dough so much. I actually didn’t realize this until I got myself a new oven. Yes, I’ve had it for two weeks or so now 🙂 Dough is an absolutely amazing thing! It all begins with a messy sticky shapeless something, but then you fight it, you stretch it, you knead and eventually you get a nice and soft shiny ball. Not to mention the final result… 🙂
Mardi gras and carnival time in Slovenia are somehow special. Actually, the only time I did not celebrate it was when I was in France. We always do masks and there is a huge party. Oh yes, and donuts.
So this is how I got myself into this business. I haven’t really eaten donuts for quite some time now. My gran, who makes like the best ones ever (!!!), lives a bit too far away to have them fresh, and a day old, well, they’re not quite the same anymore.
I wanted to make a healthier version of her recipe which goes like this:
500 g flour
5 egg yolks
50 g sugar
50 g butter
40 g fresh yeast
1,5 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking powder
3 Tbsp spiced rum
peel of 1 organic lemon
1 vanilla sugar
250 – 300 ml milk
oil for frying
apricot jam for filling
icing sugar for garnish
After preparing the dough, which is pretty much the same as described in my recipe, make 60 g balls and let rise. Heat the oil at 60ºc – 70ºc. Fry 3 mins on one side with the lid on, than turn the donuts and fry another 3 mins with the lid off. Warm up the apricot jam and fill the donuts using a confectionery bag or a syringe with a long nozzle.
I did not want to fry them, so I tried the oven option. The donuts turned out just great, but had more of a brioche texture. But as far as the taste goes, I got it right. And filling them with clementine jam was like heaven!
- 200 g white flour T400
- 125 g wholegrain spelt flour
- 110 g pumpkin puree (from hokkaido)
- 20 g fresh yeast
- 25 g agave syrup
- 50 g soft butter
- 30 – 50 ml milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1,5 Tbsp spiced rum
- 3 egg yolks
- peel of ½ organic lemon
- 1/3 tsp salt
- 100 g dark chocolate (70%)
- 1 tsp butter
- unsalted pistachios
- peel of 2 organic oranges
- clementine or orange jam
- Cut pumpkin in half, drizzle with some neutral oil and bake at 200°C 30-40 min or until softened. Let cool and puree using a hand blender.
- Prepare the yeast: mix 20 ml warm milk, 1 tsp of agave syrup and yeast.
- In a large bowl mix the two flours and salt.
- Using a hand mixer, mix softened butter at the highest speed, than gradually add agave syrup and egg yolks. In the end, add lemon peel, vanilla extract and rum.
- Pour the egg mixture, pumpkin puree and yeast into the flours. Mix with a wooden spatula until combined. Add more milk if needed.
- When ingredients well combined, start kneading. The dough should be firm, but flexible. Add more flour or milk if needed. The starch needs some time to get activated, so in this first phase the dough will be pretty sticky. It should start getting the right texture after 8 mins of kneading. If it still is too sticky and too soft, add little flour. Flour your work surface and now knead as you would any other dough. In the end you should get a firm and silky ball of dough.
- Let rise and when it doubles in size knead once more. Form small balls of 40 g each and let rise. Turn once while rising.
- Preheat oven at 180°c (classic heating up+down) and bake 20 – 30 min.
- Using a confectionary bag or a syringe with a long nozzle fill the donuts with a warm jam as soon as you get them out of the oven.
- Melt the chocolate and the butter over a double boiler. Pour over the donuts and sprinkle with some crushed pistachios and orange peel.