December 15th, 2009

Hanukkah Sufganiyot (Jelly Donuts)

sufganiyot

Photo: JenT

We are well into Hanukkah, a holiday that encourages fried food. Can you think of any better traditional holiday foods than potato pancakes (latkes) and DONUTS?! This is good stuff people.

Okay, okay. I realize that fried foods (are also rolled in sugar) are not the kind of thing I usually recommend feeding young children, but it’s a special holiday treat. Fried foods are part of the magic and fun of the Festival of Lights and, hey, everything in moderation, right?

I’ve been wanting to try my hand at homemade donuts for a while now. I considered making cider donuts back in autumn, but I was too tired and preggy. Plus, my favorite donuts are yeasty and doughy, not cakey like most cider donuts. So, at the time, I decided that they weren’t worth the effort. (I know—saying that donuts of any kind aren’t worth the effort is insanity, but I was 9 months pregnant. Cut me some slack.) Sufganiyot, Hanukkah jelly donuts, on the other hand, are right up my alley. And now that I’m not carrying a full term infant in my uterus, I’m up to the donut challenge. Plus, these being a holiday treat, I (and you) can make cooking these with the kiddos an annual tradition.

I ever so slightly adapted a recipe from Martha Stewart, but also referenced this recipe at Epicurious. The latter not only offers adaptations for Jewish dietary restrictions (not for us, but maybe for some of you out there?), but also directions for easily including kids in the donut making fun. It’s fun, easy and yummy. Just the way cooking with kids and holiday treats should be. And I know: my (big) ChowBaby and I made these donuts together just yesterday. (Sorry I flaked on taking my own pictures. They came out gorgeous and you’d see what a blast Isaac had helping me in the kitchen. Next time.)

Sufganiyot
adapted from Martha Stewart (makes 20)
(can be served to kids 12+ mos)

3/4 c warm water (about 110 degrees)
1 envelope active dry yeast (1 scant tbsp)
2 1/2 c organic all purpose flour, plus more for dusting
1/4 c organic sugar, plus more for rolling
1/2 tsp organic nutmeg
pinch salt
2 large organic eggs, separated
2 tbsp organic unsalted butter, room temp
1/2 c strawberry, raspberry or apricot jam (I like mine full of jelly)
peanut oil for frying, plus more for bowl

1. In a large bowl, stir together the warm water and yeast. Let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Add 3/4 cup flour, 1/4 cup sugar, and salt; mix until well combined. Add egg yolks and remaining 1 3/4 cups flour. Mix until combined, then knead dough in bowl until all flour is incorporated. Turn out onto a lightly floured work surface; knead a few minutes until smooth. Knead in butter until incorporated.

2. Transfer dough to a well-oiled bowl, turning several times to coat entirely with oil. Cover tightly with plastic wrap, and (ideally) refrigerate overnight. It’s possible to make these on the same day—I did. Just keep the covered dough in a very warm place for a couple of hours until it doubles in size.

3. If you refrigerated the dough, bring it to room temperature, about 30 minutes. Otherwise, you can immediately roll it out on a lightly floured work surface into an 11-inch square, about 1/4 inch thick. Cut out about 24 2″ rounds. Reroll scraps; cut out about 16 more rounds.

4. Line a baking sheet with a clean kitchen towel. In a small bowl, lightly beat egg whites. Brush edge of a dough round with egg white, then mound some jam in center (Martha recommends about a 1/2 tsp—I push it. Top with another round; press edges to seal. I found that it helps to create a dome with the second round before placing it on top of the jellied one and pinching them together. This helped me keep (most of) the jelly from seeping out. Repeat with remaining rounds. Transfer to prepared baking sheet; let rise until puffy, 20 to 30 minutes.

5.
Heat 3 inches of oil in a large, heavy pot until it reaches 360 on a deep-fry thermometer. Working in batches of 4 or 5, slip doughnuts into hot oil. Fry, turning once, until golden brown, about 1 minute. (Mine went faster since I was moving too fast to keep my oil at the right temp. If this happens to you, don’t fret. Just go by their color. You want golden brown donuts.) Using a slotted spoon, transfer donuts to paper towels to drain.

6. While donuts are still hot, dip them in remaining 1/2 cup sugar, turning to coat. Serve immediately.

4 Responses

  1. [...] were put up. Hanukkah was celebrated without a hitch (my ChowBaby and I even found time to make Sufganiyot, home made jelly donuts). And holiday cookie dough was made and frozen in plenty of time for [...]

  2. [...] Jelly Donuts While I admit that these are most delicious straight out of the fryer, these jelly donuts can certainly sit overnight. And what a fun treat on a holiday morning! [...]

  3. Miranda Couse says:

    I’ll have to try this recipe. Definitely pinterest quality!

  4. [...] feel all that special to me. (Unless we’re talking about jam filled fried dough, aka jelly donuts, in which case I’ll shut up.) I’m once again learning to love peppermint. (Let’s [...]

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