Did you know that this Friday is National Donut Day? I know there are a lot of faux-holidays surrounding food, but this day is actually a real thing created by the Salvation Army to honor volunteers who served hot donuts to soldiers during WWI (thanks wikipedia for telling us stuff)! Kind of the best thing ever, right? So, of course, I really wanted to make up donuts and the real, fried-and-true variety.
Until now, I had never made a homemade, raised donut that tasted as good as one from a donut shop. They always came out too bread-y, or with too large of bubbles, and just not soft enough for my liking. I played around with a few recipes until I landed on this one, and damn. It’s pretty great. I ended up using the same method used to make ultra-pillowy and stretchy Hokkaido milk bread and it ended up being the key for perfectly tender donuts at home. If you’re familiar with the Portland donut scene (I feel like a tool for even typing that) then you may have heard of Blue Star Donuts. They make brioche donuts and have this marionberry jam donut with peanut butter dust on the outside that is INSANELY delicious. Like, so good. These beauties are my homemade version and they are just as killer. Th jam in the middle of these is a quick and easy strawberry + raspberry jam that takes less than 30 minutes to make and has just a few ingredients: fruit, sugar, and lemon. Boom. You can store any leftovers in the fridge for toast and scones and things, or freeze it for later use. The peanut butter dust is made with peanut butter powder and confectioners sugar. That’s it! It hits all the nostalgic pb&j notes but in the form of a pillowy, golden-fried donut.
Not that you need any other excuse beside National Donut Day to make these, but I am willing to bet that any dad’s in your life will 100% appreciate a batch of these babes fresh from the fryer come Father’s Day. Hint, hint.
- For the dough:
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup water
- ½ cup whole milk
- ¼ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons dry yeast
- 2 large eggs
- 4 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- canola oil for frying (about 1 quart)
- For the strawberry-raspberry Jam:
- 1 lb. strawberries rinsed and hulled
- 6 ounces raspberries
- 1½ cups sugar
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- For the peanut butter sugar:
- ¼ cup peanut butter powder (like PB2)
- ¼ cup confectioners sugar
- Start the dough by making the roux: whisk 2 tablespoons of flour into ⅓ cup of water in a small saucepan, making sure to whisk out all the lumps. Place the saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens into a paste. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- In a measuring glass, heat the milk in the microwave until just warm to the touch (about 30 seconds). Whisk in the sugar and yeast. Set aside for about 5 minutes, until foamy. Whisk in the eggs, and melted butter.
- Add the flour and salt to the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with the dough hook. Add the roux and yeast mixtures to the flour and begin mixing on medium speed. Once the dough comes together and there are no longer any dry bits, continue mixing for 10 minutes to knead the dough until you a tacky, stretchy dough (you can also do this by hand, it will take a bit longer). The dough will be fairly sticky and wet, that’s totally fine! Turn out the dough onto a clean, flour-dusted surface, and knead a few times by hand until you a smooth ball of dough. Place the dough into a greased bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Rest the dough in the refrigerator overnight (or on the counter at room temp until doubled in size, about 1 hour).
- Once the dough has doubled, pat it out on a flour-dusted surface to about ½-inch thickness. Using a round cutter (I used a 3-inch cutter), punch out the donuts. Gather the scraps and knead into a disk, cover and allow to rest 15-30 minutes before patting out and cutting more donuts. Place the donuts on a parchment lined baking sheet that has been dusted with flour, very lightly dust the tops of the donuts with more flour and cover. Let the donuts rest at room temperature until doubled in size. If the dough has been chilled overnight this may take anywhere from 1 to 2 hours (30-minutes to 1 hour for room temp).
- Fill a deep, wide skillet or saucepan about ½ full with canola oil, fit on a candy or frying thermometer, and heat to between 325 and 350°F. Fry the donuts in batches, about 2 minutes per side, until deeply golden. Set the fried donuts on a baking sheet fitted with a wire rack over the top. Let the donuts cool for a few minutes before dusting with peanut butter powder and filling with the jam. To fill the donuts I used a chopstick to poke a hole in one side and sort of wiggled out a cavity in the center of each donut before piping in the filling with a medium-sized round piping tip (something large enough to allow any berry seeds to pass through but not larger than the chopstick hole). You can either dip the donuts into the peanut butter sugar or use a mesh sieve to sift the powder over the donuts.
- *For the jam:
- Cut the strawberries into quarters and place in a large saucepan along with the raspberries, sugar, and lemon juice. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring occasionally, until the fruit has completely broken down and thickened–about 20 minutes. To test if the jam is set , place a plate in the freezer before you start, drop a dab of the jam onto the chilled plate and wait a minute or two. Push the edge of the jam, if it seems gelled and doesn’t run across the plate it’s done. Pour the jam into a heatproof jar and cool to room temperature. Fit with a lid and store in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
- For the peanut butter sugar:
- Sift the peanut butter powder and confectioners sugar together into a bowl and whisk to combine.