by Joyce Kohl
Here are some tips and tricks on making the best tasting doughnuts possible!
Fat: What to Use and How to Use It
Vegetable fats or bland vegetable oils are the best because they heat quickly, are almost odorless and do not burn as readily as butter or margarine. Put enough fat or oil in a pan that will be about 3-4 inches lower than the rim of the pan or skillet or deep-fryer. Then heat to the correct temperature before adding doughnuts. Use caution when adding doughnuts in that you don’t lower the temperature – that is, add them slowly and not too many at a time. If the oil temperature is too low, doughnuts will absorb the oil. If the temperature is too high, the doughnuts will brown too fast and may not be thoroughly cooked in the centers.
Cook only a few at a time and turn them often. Be careful not to pierce them.
When removing doughnuts, use a perforated spoon or frying basket. Draining on both sides can be done by turning out the doughnuts on crumpled paper toweling.
Doughnuts are best cooked by deep-frying. In fact, this is the only proper and successful way to make your own doughnuts.
Doughnuts take around 3 minutes to cook. Cake at 360 degrees; raised (yeast) at 375 degrees.
Frostings and Fillings
Use any frosting recipe. To fill, cut a slit in one side, and poke the filling in with a spoon, then pinch the edges of the doughnut together. Try some vanilla pudding, then frost with chocolate. Or fill with your favorite jellies or preserves and put a light glaze on top.
Save the Oil!
Save your oil by clarifying it with a few thick slices of raw potatoes tossed into the hot fat until they’re browned and well done. Discard the potato slices, then strain the fat thoroughly by pouring it through several thicknesses of muslin or cheesecloth. Cover and store in a cool place. I store mine in the refrigerator.