Delightful doughnuts

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By Chef Ed Dychauco

Pots and Pans

Thursday, June 26, 2014


FOR the sweet tooth, another craze has swept the entire nation.
Actually, I shouldn’t say craze, but a comeback of sort since it has been with us for so long a time.

Doughnuts or donuts. Have you ever wondered why they are called doughnuts when they don’t even have nuts in it? Well, except if it is glazed and sprinkled with it.

At any rate, this yeast-risen confection is found in almost all parts of the world. Each county has their own version.

But bottom line is, they are mostly, if not all, are fried in hot oil.

They may come in round shapes, round with a hole in the middle, square, rectangular, small ball-shapes, elongated, twisted and a few more.

Round shapes, that looks like a “flying-saucer” but puffed are usually filled with cream, fruit jellies, nuts (here it is!), dried fruits, bean paste (a specialty among Asian countries), sesame seeds and maybe some other exotic fillings.

The rest are usually left as it is.

All of these shapes can be glazed with chocolate (dark, white, flavored and colored), maybe some jellies or cream, too.

Some are just sprinkled with white granulated sugar, brown sugar and the most popular, confectioner’s sugar that gives us that melt-in-your-mouth fill!

Caramelized sugar glaze is also a popular variation for this.

Aside from yeast-risen donut (which is closer to the bread dough) that is really light and airy, there is also the cake style donut which is kind of heavy and dense.

The choice is yours.

Several local, national and internationally well-known doughnut shops all over the world have their own versions of this delight when it comes to fillings, glazes and other toppings to “decorate” them.

Toppings! I sure did not mention that aside from the glaze on top or all over the donut pieces, they are also topped or rolled in various decorations or garnish like nuts in different shapes and sizes, dried fruits (whole or chopped), chocolate-chips, sprinkles (or jimmies), desiccated coconut, etc.

Most popular version of the doughnuts includes plain vanilla, chocolate and coffee.

Although I wouldn’t be surprised one day to see ‘ube,’ ‘pandan,’ ‘langka,’ durian and other unusual and striking flavors in this well-liked dessert.

Actually, for so long a time, donuts are served for breakfast and was said to be a Dutch origin and was brought to the USA in the mid-1800s.
But an American in Maine was said to “poke” a hole in the middle, thus the hole in the doughnut. It was said he “invented” this.

The reason was actually to eliminate the middle part which either is not cooked through and gooey or takes a long time to cook.

Nevertheless, that “hole” stuck and it became world-famous. The rest is history.

Now, doughnuts are enjoyed as snacks or after meal treats, though some continue to eat them as a breakfast item.

Specialty stores and shops continue to make doughnuts with unique flavors and toppings are mushrooming all over.

Meaning, they are not for dunking anymore but are made into something special and different, say doughnut ice cream sandwiches? Hamburgers on doughnuts?

Doughnuts with coffee, tea or chocolate, anyone?

2 sachets active dry yeast
¼ cup lukewarm water
1½ cup warm milk
½ cup sugar
¾ tsp salt
2 pcs whole eggs
1/3 cup margarine or butter
5 cups flour (more or less)
Oil for frying

Mix yeast, sugar, salt in milk & water.

Whisk to dissolve. Let yeast rise.

Add the eggs, margarine or butter and half of the flour.

Slowly mix them by hand, wooden spoon or a mixer.

Add the rest of the flour and continue mixing till smooth.

Transfer to a slightly greased bowl and let rise till double in bulk.
Roll dough in a floured board or table to about ½”.

Cut with doughnut cutter. Let rise again.

Using a wide spatula, fry doughnuts turning once the other side is golden brown.

Drain donuts, roll in sugar or dip in glaze while still hot.

[Email: potsnpans1976@yahoo.com]

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on June 26, 2014.

Lifestyle

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