Friday, February 19, 2010

Hello World! (Heart-Shaped Doughnuts)

This is my first blog post ever! Very exciting.

Anyway, I would like to honor my new blog with a recipe that I made for Valentine's Day weekend. I'd been wanting to make doughnuts for the longest time, but never got around to doing it because I didn't know if I could get rid of them all -_-!!

It wasn't until I got reassurances from Gordon (later followed by a whole slew of guys) that they would be eaten that I finally decided to take the leap!

Originally, we were going to make regular doughnuts, but we realized that we didn't have any proper doughnut cutters. I didn't feel like buying a whole set of new ones, so after some rummaging, we found one of my apartment-mate's heart-shaped cookie cutters from last year's Valentine's Day. So...considering how V-Day just happened to be around the corner, we all thought this would be a nice substitute. James wanted to take one back and offer his girlfriend a "love doughnut".
It actually turned out that the fried chocolatey goodness attracted my apartment-mates and 4 guys...a bigger crowd than we expected, but a good thing too because we actually made a lot more than we originally thought we would.

Note: Gordon's really proud of the unintentional doughnut bird he made...Moonjung thought it looked disturbingly like some kind of fetal fowl, but I think it's kind of cute, don't you?
Heart-shaped Doughnuts:
-2 tsp active-dry yeast
-2 cups bread flour (plus more as you knead)
-3/4 cup granulated white sugar (maybe a little more? Gordon thought the dough could have been sweeter)
-5 tbsp unsalted butter
-3 egg yolks
-1/4 cup powdered milk + 1 cup warm water

-1 big pot, preferrably one that is sort of narrow and tall
-~ 2 cups oil (more or less, depending on the shape of your pot)
-Heart-shaped cookie cutters

1. Mix everything together, adding flour until you get a nice soft dough (not too sticky).

2. Set in a warm place* and let rise until it's about doubled in size.

3. Roll out the dough to about 1/4 in thickness. Cut out your doughnuts (in our case, the heart-shaped cookie cutters).

4. Let them rise in a warm place again* for 1-2 hours

5. Just before they are ready, fill the pot with oil and start heating it on medium heat to 325F.

6. When it's hot enough** drop your doughnuts in (don't crowd!) and cook each side for about 1 minute.

7. Drain on a cooling rack, leaving a paper bag underneath to catch the oil.

8. Apply the glaze!

Chocolate glaze (from Alton Brown)


1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup milk
1 tbsp corn syrup
2 tsp vanilla extract (I forgot to add this)
4 oz bittersweet chocolate
2 cups confectioner's sugar

1. Combine everything except the sugar and chocolate in a saucepan and heat over medium until the butter is melted.

2. Turn the heat to low and add the chocolate, mixing until melted.

3. Turn off the heat, add the sugar, and mix until smooth.

4. Place the glaze over a bowl of warm water and DUNK!

Note: I put my newly dunked doughnuts on the cooling rack on top of a pan to save any chocolate glaze that may drip down in the cooling process.

*What I've learned from Alton Brown is that the best way to raise yeast-containing dough (whether it be bread, cakes, or doughnuts) is to leave it uncovered in an oven with a bowl of boiling water. That way you get an environment that is both hot and humid. Just make sure no one turns the oven on while you're waiting! That actually happened once...utter disaster.
**I didn't have a thermometer, so I just took a piece of dough (our sacrificial lamb) and dropped it into the oil. I could tell it was hot enough once the dough started sizzling.

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