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Mini Doughnuts

Seeing as it’s the first week of July, and traditionally the air is filled with the deep-fried smells of Stampede, and half my calories are typically consumed in the form of mini doughnuts, I thought I’d post a recipe here. I did a virtual midway food class yesterday, and people were thrilled to have the ability to turn out actual cinnamon-sugar mini doughnuts in their own kitchens. This is the sort of thing you become known for – I want to be the aunt/grandma/friend who makes mini doughnuts to eat warm when you’re sitting in my kitchen or on my patio.

This is my go-to yeast doughnut dough – it could be used for larger doughnuts, and topped or dipped with any number of glazes. The dough also freezes very well, if you don’t want that many doughnuts at one time – wrap it well, freeze it and then thaw and carry on when you need fresh doughnuts. And if you’d like to make the dough ahead of time without freezing, you can slow the rise by putting it in the fridge overnight (or up to a couple days), and take it out to warm up a bit on the counter, then cut and fry.

Mini Doughnuts

AuthorJulie

Yields1 Serving

2 tsp active dry or instant/quick yeast (1 pkg)
1/4 cup warm water
3 1/4-3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (plus a bit extra as needed)
1 cup milk, warmed
1/4 cup sugar (plus extra for coating)
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 large egg
1 tsp salt
canola or other vegetable oil, for frying
cinnamon, for the cinnamon-sugar

1

Put the water in a large bowl and sprinkle over the yeast. Let it sit for a few minutes to dissolve. (If you’re worried that it might be old or inactive, wait a few more minutes and watch for it to foam—if it doesn’t, you may need fresh yeast. If you're using instant or quick yeast, no need to even dissolve it-you can just add it to the bowl along with the liquid, flour etc and it will do its thing.) Add the flour, milk, butter, egg, sugar and salt, and stir, then knead until you have a soft, very tacky dough. Cover and set aside for an hour or two, or until about doubled in size.

2

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and pat with floured hands until it’s about 1/2 inch thick. Cut out as many rounds as possible, as closely together as you can to avoid scraps, using the rim of a shot glass or open end of a tomato paste can. Poke a hole in each with a chopstick or your finger, stretching it out a bit as it will puff up as it cooks—make the hole bigger than you want it to be once it’s cooked. If you like, cover with a kitchen towel and let them rise for another 20-30 minutes (this isn’t necessary, but will produce lighter doughnuts).

3

Heat about an inch and a half of oil in a deep, heavy saucepan (I use an enamel-coated cast iron Dutch oven) until it’s hot but not smoking—if you have a thermometer, aim for about 350F, and if you dip a scrap of bread or bit of dough in, it should start to sizzle. Cook the doughnuts about 6 at a time, depending on the size of your pot (you just don’t want to crowd it too much), turning occasionally with tongs or a slotted spoon, until puffed and golden brown, about 2 minutes per batch. Reroll the scraps once, or just cook them as scraps—these pieces tend to be our favourites.

4

Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate for a few minutes, while you put some sugar into a shallow dish and stir in a generous shake of cinnamon. Toss the doughnuts in the cinnamon-sugar while still warm. Makes lots.

Ingredients

 2 tsp active dry or instant/quick yeast (1 pkg)
 1/4 cup warm water
 3 1/4-3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (plus a bit extra as needed)
 1 cup milk, warmed
 1/4 cup sugar (plus extra for coating)
 1/4 cup butter, softened
 1 large egg
 1 tsp salt
 canola or other vegetable oil, for frying
 cinnamon, for the cinnamon-sugar

Directions

1

Put the water in a large bowl and sprinkle over the yeast. Let it sit for a few minutes to dissolve. (If you’re worried that it might be old or inactive, wait a few more minutes and watch for it to foam—if it doesn’t, you may need fresh yeast. If you're using instant or quick yeast, no need to even dissolve it-you can just add it to the bowl along with the liquid, flour etc and it will do its thing.) Add the flour, milk, butter, egg, sugar and salt, and stir, then knead until you have a soft, very tacky dough. Cover and set aside for an hour or two, or until about doubled in size.

2

Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and pat with floured hands until it’s about 1/2 inch thick. Cut out as many rounds as possible, as closely together as you can to avoid scraps, using the rim of a shot glass or open end of a tomato paste can. Poke a hole in each with a chopstick or your finger, stretching it out a bit as it will puff up as it cooks—make the hole bigger than you want it to be once it’s cooked. If you like, cover with a kitchen towel and let them rise for another 20-30 minutes (this isn’t necessary, but will produce lighter doughnuts).

3

Heat about an inch and a half of oil in a deep, heavy saucepan (I use an enamel-coated cast iron Dutch oven) until it’s hot but not smoking—if you have a thermometer, aim for about 350F, and if you dip a scrap of bread or bit of dough in, it should start to sizzle. Cook the doughnuts about 6 at a time, depending on the size of your pot (you just don’t want to crowd it too much), turning occasionally with tongs or a slotted spoon, until puffed and golden brown, about 2 minutes per batch. Reroll the scraps once, or just cook them as scraps—these pieces tend to be our favourites.

4

Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate for a few minutes, while you put some sugar into a shallow dish and stir in a generous shake of cinnamon. Toss the doughnuts in the cinnamon-sugar while still warm. Makes lots.

Mini Doughnuts
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About Julie

3 comments on “Mini Doughnuts

  1. Léa
    July 14, 2021 at 9:09 am

    I love that it says « Yield – 1 serving »…?…probably not a lie!!!

  2. Alicen
    July 16, 2021 at 8:20 am

    If I were to make this for a crowd of ~30 kids and adults, would one batch be enough or should I double (or triple) it?
    These look amazing!

    • Alicen
      July 21, 2021 at 7:50 pm

      For anyone wondering, a single batch made 29 mini donuts (I used a biscuit cutter that as larger than a tomato paste can) and various scraps as well. DELICIOUS!

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