I don’t have doughnuts often, but when I do, I want one that is crispy on the outside, soft and pillowy on the inside, and filled with a rich cream. Maybe it’s because I grew up eating paczkis on Fat Tuesday, but unless I’m at a cider mill at the height of autumn, my doughnuts don’t have holes in them. Today I’ve got a great recipe for you for a doughnut that’s just the right size, just the right balance of crispy and light, and filled with rich and creamy white chocolate. Because if you’re going to have a doughnut, have the best, richest doughnut you can find.
The dough for these is the same one from the Anniversary Slovak-American Cookbook that I made a few months ago. It might be many decades old, but it is a classic, and it’s adaptable enough to work for pretty much any kind of doughnut you want to make. I decided to make a super easy filling by simply making some white chocolate pudding from a mix. I usually make my dish components from scratch, but since we’re already making a yeasted doughnut, I wanted the filling to be easy enough to whip up in seconds. It turned out creamy and full of white chocolate flavor, just the right contrast to the doughnuts. I also decided to make the doughnuts on the small side, because a little bit of fried dough goes a long way. These are just right for a treat for breakfast, and they won’t make you feel like you broke all your New Year’s resolutions.
You can find detailed instructions on how to make the doughnut dough in the recipe below, or you can hop over to the original post here. The only difference before frying the doughnuts is that, when it’s time to cut out them out, instead of using a traditional doughnut cutter, simply use a 2 to 3 inch biscuit cutter or a 1 cup measuring cup. During the dough’s last rise, you can mix up the pudding mix and refrigerate it while you fry the doughnuts so that it’s ready to go. Once the doughnuts are all fried and cool enough to handle, put the pudding in a pastry bag fitted with a plain round piping nozzle. You could also use a ziploc bag with one corner cut off, and I think you could get away with not using a piping nozzle, although I did use one so I can’t vouch for that method completely. Using the back of a small spoon or fork, poke a hole into each doughnut and wiggle it around a bit. Insert the piping nozzle and pipe some pudding into the center, then gradually move the piping bag out of the doughnut, piping in more pudding as you go. Repeat with the remaining doughnuts and serve!
- 1 can evaporated milk
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
- 4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Canola oil for frying
- 1 package white chocolate pudding
- 2 cups milk, cold
- Warm the evaporated milk in a small saucepan until simmering, then remove it from the heat.
- Add the salt, sugar and butter to a large heat proof bowl. Pour the milk over it to melt the butter, then allow the mixture to cool until it is lukewarm.
- Add the yeast and two cups of flour and mix together with a wooden spoon. Let this sponge rest and bubble for an hour.
- Add the egg yolks, vanilla, and the remaining two cups of flour. Stir together with a wooden spoon, then pour out onto a floured counter and knead it until it forms a smooth ball that springs back when you poke it, about ten minutes. Put it back in the bowl, cover it loosely with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel, and let it rise until it has doubled in bulk, about two hours.
- Turn the dough out again onto a floured counter and roll it out until it is about ¾ of an inch thick. Use a 3” biscuit or cookie cutter to cut out doughnuts, and let them rise while you heat your oil.
- Heat at least two inches of canola oil in a heavy bottomed cast enamel pot and heat it to 360°F. Use a candy or digital cooking thermometer, since having the oil temperature right is the key to great doughnuts.
- While the oil heats, you can make the filling. Whisk together the pudding mix and milk for five minutes. Place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
- Using a metal slotted spoon or spatula, carefully place a doughnut, raised side down, in the oil. Add two or three more doughnuts, depending on the size of your pot. Fry for between 60 and 90 seconds, until the bottom is golden brown, then flip over and fry for another minute. Remove the doughnuts, one at a time, and place them on paper towels to dry and drain off any excess oil.
- Repeat the frying process with the rest of the doughnuts. Make sure you check your oil temperature to keep it between 350°F and 360°F before adding each batch.
- When the doughnuts are cool enough to handle, you can start filling them. Put the white chocolate pudding into a pastry bag (or a ziplock bag with a corner cut off and a piping coupler attached). Fit the coupler with a plain round piping nozzle. Or, you could just cut a tiny hole in the corner of the pastry or ziplock bag and squeeze the frosting carefully through that.
- Use the handle of a small spoon or fork to poke a hole into each doughnut. Place the nozzle into the doughnut as far as it will go. Start squeezing the bag, then start pulling the nozzle out of the doughnut as you continue squeezing. You’ll likely get a small amount of frosting on the outside of the doughnut; I see this as a bonus. Repeat with the remaining doughnuts and sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired.