Monday, October 27, 2008
Now you've seen the picture, you're wondering, where are the holes in these doughnuts? Here's the short answer: I didn't have a doughnut cutter.
I spent all of Sunday morning in stores that sell baking tools trying to find one, but the only specialty store in my area that would possibly stock it was, unfortunately, closed. And since I'd already started the dough, I couldn't wait any more.
So I did what I've done when I made doughnuts in the past, which isn't often. I used a cookie cutter. A regular round one, about 2 inches across.
These are yeasted doughnuts so they have a mildly sweet, yeasty flavor combined with a soft, fluffy texture that's quite wonderful.
I used soft tofu instead of eggs in this recipe, and I used a mix of canola oil and vegan "butter" instead of regular butter.
This is my final entry for Sweet Vegan, the event I'm hosting this month (gosh, I did eat too many sweets this month!). I want to take the opportunity to remind all of you cooks and bakers out there to send in your entries before end of day Oct. 31. I am out of town the next four days, but I'll post the round-up before the end of the week.
And finally, not to forget, a very happy- and sweet - Diwali to everyone!
Vegan Yeast Doughnuts
Mix in a bowl: 1 cup warm water and 4 1/2 tsp active dry yeast
Let stand for five minutes until yeast is active and frothy. Now add 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour and stir in until smooth.
Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and allow it to rise in a warm place, around 1 hour.
In a large bowl, beat together in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer 4 tbsp vegan "butter" like Smart Balance's vegan version or Earth Balance vegan butter + 2 tbsp vegetable or canola oil.
Add 2/3 cups turbinado sugar and beat in until fluffy and light.
Add 3/4 cups of soft tofu and 2 tbsp almond milk and beat about 3 minutes.
Add 2 tsp vanilla, 1/4 tsp salt and beat in until well-blended.
Add 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour and the flour-yeast mixture and beat in until the dough comes together.
Move to a greased bowl, turning over once to coat with oil.
Cover tight with plastic wrap and place in a warm place for about 2 hours until the dough has risen to about twice its size.
Punch down the dough, cover with a plastic wrap, and place in a refrigerator about 3 hours. The dough will continue to rise.
Turn out the dough on a lightly floured surface, and roll to about 1/2-inch thickness.
With a doughnut cutter or with a cookie cutter, cut out doughnuts and place them on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper. Allow the donuts to rise until about doubled in size, 1-2 hours.
Heat oil in a frying pan to 365 degrees. A thermometer for deep frying is invaluable in helping you maintain a perfect frying temperature so the donuts don't absorb oil but just cook in it.
Drop the donuts in one or two at a time, and cook both sides until golden.
Dust with powdered sugar and serve.
If you like, with the hole-less doughnuts, you can use a pastry bag to poke a hole in the side of each doughnut and pipe in jelly or vegan whipped cream or any other filling you desire.