I love homemade doughnuts, but don’t often make them. And when I think about it, when I do make them it’s the small pieces I end up picking at and nibbling – the holes and the scraps, with interesting shapes and lots of craggy edges and crispy bits. Which is why I’ve decided that for the aforementioned reasons, and the fact that the vast majority of the population does not own a doughnut cutter, fritters are the way to go. In fact, fritters are a quick alternative to muffins, quickbreads and all manner of breakfast baking; the batter takes a few minutes to mix up, and there’s no need to preheat the oven – the fritters themselves cook in just a few minutes, not 20 or 30.
I can justify most morning baked (and fried) goods. Making them saves time!
When most of us think of fritters, we default to those sticky, bigger-than-doughnuts apple ones you see at coffee shops, or the corn fritters that come with fried chicken. These ones are small, two bites big, made with ricotta for a smooth, creamy dough, and coarsely grated apples which get more evenly distributed and make for a slightly shaggy fritter. Drop the dough in small spoonfuls – I like to scoop them from the side of the spoon, running up the side of the bowl so that it runs the length of the spoon and makes a slightly long shape that cooks through more quickly. No perfection required here – the wonkier the better.