Thursday, May 30, 2013

Hate the idea of frying donuts? Try fonuts!

I've always liked the idea of making donuts at home, but I’m frankly terrified of cooking with hot oil.
    Luckily I’ve come across an excellent alternative: Fonuts, which you bake instead of fry. They have exactly the same texture as donuts without the use of oil.
    A recent issue of Saveur magazine was dedicated to all things donuts, and I tried a couple of recipes from the issue for fonuts that were absolutely terrific: Strawberry-Buttermilk Fonuts and Cottage Street Bakery Dirt Bombs.
    My husband was absolutely crazy for the results of both recipes.
    I can’t recommend enough that you try both of them, particularly the Strawberry-Buttermilk Fonuts this time of year when strawberries are in season. Your family and friends won’t know what to do with themselves when presented with a homemade strawberry donut on a summer morning for breakfast (or any other time of day, for that matter).

Strawberry-Buttermilk Fonuts (click for the recipe): In order to make these actually look like donuts, you need a donut pan. I found and purchased an absolutely adorable one online, and proceeded to make this extremely easy recipe.
   The recipe says to grease the pan with canola oil, and make sure that’s what you use. The oil will help the batter spread in each donut mold.

Cottage Street Bakery Dirt Bombs (click for the recipe): These are baked in muffin tins, and so obviously look more like a muffin than a donut.
   The recipe calls for using six-cup muffin tins, which makes large-size muffins. I didn’t have any of these on hand and so simply used a 12-cup muffin tin instead. The baking time remains the same.
    One thing about this recipe: It calls for 4 ½ cups of unsalted butter, softened.
    That’s an awful lot of butter, and it’s not all needed.
    I made the mistake of taking out all the butter overnight to let it soften to room temperature without reading further into the recipe.
   Only 12 tablespoons of softened butter is actually used in the donuts.
   The rest is melted, and the baked donuts are dipped in the butter before being mixed in cinnamon sugar.
    I found I used less than half of the butter that was meant for melting when it came time to dip and dress the donuts.
   So do yourself a favor and soften just the 12 tablespoons needed in the recipe, then melt the amount of butter you figure you might need to dip the donuts in. You can always melt more if needed.