Few things say fall to me more than apple spiced doughnuts. Our little local pumpkin patch, knows that the secret to selling loads of pumpkins and gallons of freshly pressed apple cider is simply to sell, hot from the fryer, sugar and cinnamon dusted doughnuts in brown paper bags. The lovely aroma of frying dough, the tart full flavored sip of crisp, hot cider is nothing short of intoxicating. As a result of indulging in these delights, patrons happily part with hundreds of their own hard earned dollars, loading carts to overflowing with gorgeous heirloom variety pumpkins, squashes, purple hued garlic and gallons upon gallons of freshly pressed cider.
I've definitely fallen victim to this addictive mix of flavors, sights and smells, and my aforementioned fruit and veg hoarding habits have more than gotten me in trouble there on more than one occasion.
It's a heady, hedonistic mix of sight, sound and taste, and truly it's what we all long for this time of year. The authentic, connected to nature, fruitful experience that reminds us how good life is. I wanted to replicate that delicious experience in my own kitchen, minus the pumpkin hoarding of course and I had some gorgeous eggs from The Burke Avenue Urban Farm sitting in my fridge just waiting to be enlisted in some worthy cause.
These lovely eggs are from Janelle Maiocco, and the good folks at Farmstr. Farmstr is the online, direct to the consumer from the farm store that I've shared about in previous posts. Beautiful heritage pork, turkey, hens and eggs as well as lovely produce are offered. It's a fantastic way to support local farmers and keep costs low. If you live in the Seattle Metro area (soon to include the Eastside) there are many convenient drop off locations, allowing for easy access. If you haven't yet, I strongly encourage you to check them out.
I've got a DVR full of shows to watch this coming week (not sure if I'll get to any of them but a girl can hope right?) blustery rainy weather, a new pair of fluffy slippers, no pressing places to be (for once) and an email in box that is overflowing with unread emails. The dust is hopefully beginning to settle on the back to school shock my kids are experiencing and we are all starting to come up for a breath of much needed air.
I made these over the weekend as a treat for the boys, a reward for all the crazy, stressful days we've had this month. It was a perfect excuse to bring that comforting pumpkin patch experience home. Salted caramel frosting and spiced cake-like doughnuts are an awesome pair that needs little else save a hot, steaming mug of freshly pressed cider. No pumpkin hoarding required.
Salted Caramel Apple Cider Doughnuts
3 1/2 C. all purpose flour
2 packages or 14g active dry yeast
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 C. sugar
1/2 C. apple cider
1/4 C. milk
1/4 C. butter
1 tsp. salt
2 eggs, beaten
vegetable oil for frying
In a large bowl combine 1 1/2 cups of the flour, the yeast and the spices. Whisk to break up the lumps of flour and combine. Set aside. In a saucepan, combine the sugar, cider, milk, butter and salt over low heat until the butter melts. Set aside and allow to cool to 120 degrees F. Once cooled combine with the four mixture. Slowly add the eggs and whisk. Whisk until fully incorporated. Using a rubber spatula work in the rest of the flour.
Tip the dough out on to a floured surface and add just a little extra flour if it's too sticky. I'd avoid adding more than 1/4 a cup though. You want just enough so the dough is not sticking to everything. Shape the dough into a ball, spray a large bowl with baking spray and set the dough inside. Cover with plastic wrap, set in a warm place and allow to double in size. About 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
Remove the dough from the bowl, and place on a lightly floured surface, punching the dough down. Roll the dough to 1/2" thickness and allow to rest. If dough springs back too much, allow to rest 5 minutes then try rolling again. Cut with a 2 1/2" doughnut cutter, setting each on a lightly floured baking sheet, cover with a towel and let rise until fluffy, 45 minutes.
Meanwhile heat the oil in a fryer or deep stock pot to 375 degrees F. Fry the doughnuts 2 at a time 1-2 minutes per side, no longer. Drain on paper towels. Allow to cool, then dip in glaze.
For the Salted Caramel Glaze.
3 C. Confectioners sugar
1/4 C. caramel sauce (I use Trader Joes Salted Caramel)
1-2 T. milk
1-2 T. coarse sea salt
Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl, except the salt. Add more or less milk depending on how thick or thin you prefer your icing to be. Dip the tops of each cooled doughnut in the icing then set aside on a piece of waxed or parchment paper. Immediately sprinkle the doughnuts with salt.
Recipe adapted from Better Homes and Gardens
Farmstr has graciously gifted me the eggs but they have in no other way paid me to promote their site. All opinions expressed with regard to Farmstr are my own.