Let’s just agree that mini donuts with pink frosting are dang cute. I mean, I have been holding out on buying a mini donut pan because I figured…why? Why, when I already have a normal sized donut pan AND a heart shaped donut pan…does a girl really need one for minis, too? Turns out, yep. This girl sure does…especially when said pan was on sale.
I’m glad I caved…because, um…MINI DONUTS! They totally happened. These ones are vanilla scented, buttermilk tangy, double-strawberry-trouble and they are good. Like, real good.
We’re mixing crushed, freeze dried strawberries into the batter. You could use chopped, fresh berries, but honestly…I have a pretty strong aversion to soggy, strawberry-studded cake situations. Strawberries are just so juicy, you know? I feel like they make the cake surrounding them soggy and gummy and sad…that may just be me, but that’s why we’re using strawberry dust. I know I could have roasted some fresh berries, but…I guess I didn’t really…feel like it? Honesty, it’s happening. Plus, those freeze dried strawberries are unsweetened and tart, yet super concentrated with strawberry flavor — basically making them perfect to add to baked goods. The cake part of these donuts has little freckles of dried strawberry throughout that make for tangy little bursts of berry in each bite. The glaze and topping combines buttermilk (which is also in the batter), a bit of jam, and confectioner’s sugar plus a scatter of more dried strawberries. While it’s my nature to try to eat these the second they leave the oven, the flavors actually intensify as they cool…after dinner they were perfect and just in time for dessert! These mini donuts are so thoughtful that way.
Strawberry Buttermilk Mini Donuts
Adapted from Saveur
Makes about 48 mini donuts
Freeze dried strawberries have a dry texture and concentrated flavor. You can easily crush them with your hands, or in a bag with a mallet. You can find the freeze dried berries at many stores, I always seem to easily find them at Target and Trader Joe’s.
1/2 cup freeze dried strawberries, crushed, plus more for topping
1 1/4 cup cake flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup flavorless oil (like canola or grape seed)
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon buttermilk
1 tablespoon strawberry jam
1/2 to 3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
Preheat oven to 350˚F. Lightly spray a mini donut pan with cooking spray.
In a mixing bow combine the crushed, freeze dried strawberries, flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. In a large measuring cup or another bowl, whisk together the oil, buttermilk, egg, and vanilla, to combine. Pour the oil/buttermilk mixture into the flour mixture and fold to combine completely.
Using a spoon or a piping bag, fill each mini donut cup about 1/2 way with batter. Bake in the center of the oven for about 9 minutes. Allow to cool a few minutes before turning out to cool completely. Repeat with remaining batter.
In a small bowl whisk together the milk, jam, and the 1/2 cup of confectioner’s sugar. Add more sugar to get desired consistency. Glaze cooled donuts and sprinkle with additional crushed, freeze dried strawberries.