Sometimes, the things in life that seem the most simple, turn out to be the most complicated. Take donuts for example. These doughy balls of goodness are found relatively everywhere, from small Australian tuck shops, to gourmet french patisseries. They are not a specialty dessert that is particularly beautiful, nor do they carry the reputation for being complicated to make like the classic croissant. The fact that it’s a fried ball of dough, has always given me the impression that a donut is something I could whip up in an afternoon sans problem. This, however, was not the case. My first attempt saw my precious Magimix almost burst into flames. The glue-like consistency was all to much for the mixer and for me. Impossible to retrieve the dough from the bowl, I set it aside to soak and got onto my next attempt. The second attempt was a failure not because of the recipe but because stupidly, I forgot to add the sugar. Do you guys have baking days like this? Where you continuously make silly little errors that mean you have to start from scratch. This drives me insane, not only because time is precious, but because I absolutely hate wasting food.
For my third attempt, I turned to Linda Lomelino. I’m a huge fan of her recipes and photography, I find them really inspiring. I recently bought one of her books and decided I’d try her classic donut recipe. All was looking good, until I had to add the flour and realised I didn’t have enough. After rummaging through my teeny tiny pantry, I found some corn flour and decided to add 50g of that. My dough came together nicely and I set it aside and went off to my appointment at the French immigration department. I was there for FIVE HOURS! FIVE! All so I could get a sticker attached to my Visa. I was X-rayed, my eyes were checked, I had a full medical, a French test, interviews and watched videos on ‘how to live together in France’. It was a long afternoon and all the while I couldn’t stop thinking ‘crap, my donuts are still proving!’. I was certain they would be a complete failure, but surprisingly everything came together in the end and they were incredibly delicious. I filled them with a quick and easy vanilla and raspberry chia seed jam. You could use normal jam if you like, but by using chia seeds you reduce the amount of sugar needed and save yourself some time.
Hope you lovely readers enjoy this recipe. Let me know if you’re unsure of any of the steps and I’ll try to help you out.
Classic donut recipe – by linda lomelino
- 2 tsp of warm water
- 7g of dried yeast
- 175ml of warm milk (approx 37°C°
- 1 egg
- 35g of butter at room temperature
- 45g of icing sugar
- 1/2 tsp of salt
- 390g of flour
- vegetable oil for frying
- 100g of castor sugar
- 2 tsp of ground cinnamon
In a large bowl, combine the warm water and yeast. Mix well and allow to develop for 5 minutes. Next add the warm milk, the egg, the icing sugar and the butter. Whisk until everything is well incorporated. Add the flour and salt and stir until a dough is roughly formed. Lightly flour your bench, tip the dough onto it and kneed for approximated five minutes or until the dough is smooth. If the dough is really sticky you can add more flour. Tip the smooth ball of dough into an oiled bowl. Cover with a clean tea towel and allow to prove for one hour and thirty minutes.
The dough should have now doubled in volume. Punch out some of the air, give it a quick kneed and start rolling it into small equal size balls. Remember they will double in volume so don’t make them too large. Place them on a tray covered in baking paper, cover them again with a tea towel and allow to prove for approximately an hour or until they’ve doubled in size.
In a medium size saucepan, heat the oil to 180°C. Carefully remove the donuts from the baking paper and place them topside-down in the hot oil. I cooked 2-3 at a time. Be careful not to burn yourself and constantly check the oil temperature. Allow to fry for 1-2 minutes on each side. It should be a nice golden brown all over. On a large plate, mix together the sugar and cinnamon and then roll the hot donut in it so it’s well covered. Set them aside to cool.
Vanilla and Raspberry Chia Seed Jam
- roughly 400g of frozen raspberries, defrosted
- 1tsp of vanilla seeds
- 4tbs of chia seeds
- 2tbsp of sugar (you can use more or less according to your taste)
Blend the raspberries until smooth and pass them through a sieve. If you don’t mind the texture of raspberry seeds you can omit this step. Place the raspberry puree, sugar and vanilla in a saucepan and bring to a simmer for approximately 5 minutes. Allow to cool then stir in the chia seeds. Let the chia seeds work their magic for 15 mins or until nice and thick.
Fit a piping bag with a long thin tip and fill with the jam. Insert the tip into the centre of each donut and fill with a good squeeze of jam. Eat straight away or if you eat them the next day, heat them in the microwave for a few seconds so they are nice and warm.