Ok so I finally got with the times and bought myself a donut pan.
Not that it takes up much space, but with our smaller kitchen before I felt like I didn't need to keep adding 'one more thing.' Especially a thing that's so specialized.
The angel on my shoulder would say "Silly Maggie... how often are you really going to make donuts? You don't need a pan for that."
But last week the same
I lingered by the display, and the angel piped up "I don't think tha-"...
Luckily the devil on my other shoulder interrupted and said, "Put a cork in it, Angel. Mags, you've got a huge kitchen now - you need to buy that pan."
And I did.
But before we go any further, let's get a few things straight.
Fried donuts are delicious. They are decadent. They are satisfyingly crunchy on the outside and soft and cakey on the inside.
They are FRIED IN OIL, for goodness sakes. They better be all that and a side of fries.
These, however, are baked.
They are light and airy.
And they are delicious in their own right - but if you are looking for fried, crunchy goodness, then look elsewhere! You will not find it in this recipe!
Just because some batter is baked in the shape of a donut does not mean it will taste like one from your local donut shop, ok???
Phew! I just want to make sure you understand what you're making before I get complaints that these don't taste like donuts.
Now back to our scheduled programming.
As you'll see in my recipe note below, the first two batches I made were just finished with powdered sugar & cinnamon. They were light and sweet. (Mr. Vittles commented that they didn't really taste like donuts, but gobbled them up nonetheless - if that gives you any indication of how good or bad they are.)
The last batch I put in the toaster oven to brown the tops, dipped them in melted butter, and then dipped in a mixture of granulated sugar & cinnamon.
Mr. V and I both preferred the second batch because they were more like fried (but still with far less calories - I melted 1 T. butter for the pan of 12, and didn't even use the whole amount).
And after that batch it just so happens our landlords also came over to take a look at the shower/leaky ceiling with their contractor, and commented on how 'amazing' it smelled in the house.
I explained that I had made donuts and (with the same warnings I gave you above) offered them some.
Not only did they have one each, they specifically asked a few minutes later if they could have more.
I'd call that a success :)
Baked Apple Cider Donuts
- 1 1/4 C. cake flour
- 1/2 C. granulated sugar
- 1 1/4 t. baking powder
- 1/4 t. ground nutmeg
- 1/2 t. ground cinnamon
- pinch cloves
- 3/4 t. salt
- 1 C. apple cider
- 1/2 C. buttermilk
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 2 T. butter, melted
- extra cinnamon & powdered or granulated sugar, for finishing
Place apple cider in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then simmer about 5-7 minutes until liquid is reduced by half. Remove pan from heat & set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt. Add buttermilk, egg, reduced cider, and butter. Stir until just combined. Fill a plastic baggie with batter, then cut a small hole in the corner of the bag. Pipe batter into each donut cup approximately one-half full.
Bake 4–6 minutes or until the top of the donuts spring back when touched. Let cool in pan for 4–5 minutes before removing.
Finish donuts with powdered/granulated sugar & cinnamon.* Makes about 3 dozen.
*Note: I finished my donuts two ways - for the first 2 batches, I combined 1 C. powdered sugar with 1 t. cinnamon in a ziplock bag. I then placed the donuts inside and shook the bag. The resulting donuts were very light and spongy, and sweet. For the last batch, I placed the donuts on a small rack, sprayed them with canola oil, then put them on a small pan & toasted them in the toaster oven until browned on top. I then dipped the tops in melted butter, then dipped them in a mixture of granulated sugar and cinnamon. The second batch was definitely crunchier and a bit more like fried donuts.
Recipe Adapted from Wilton