Adapted from VSO via Vegan Connections.
These are immense, so thank you to VSO for coming up with the original recipe. I’d never made doughnuts in my life before I came across this recipe — I assumed they would be too hard to make — but I have now seen the light!
3.5g instant or easy bake yeast (the powdery stuff) — half a sachet
½ cup warm water (120ml)
½ cup fat — margarine, shortening, etc.
1/4 cup caster sugar (4 TBs)
2 TBs cup dairy-free milk (40ml)
2 TBs cup of applesauce (40ml)
390g plain flour
1 litre vegetable oil, for frying
- Pour the half of the water into a pan along with the sugar and fat and heat it, stirring until melted. Pour into another bowl to let it cool a little — you will be adding the yeast to this, so it can’t be too hot.
- Mix the yeast and half the water into a jug along with half the water. I find it mixes better when you add just a little water to the yeast to start with. Give the mix 5-10 minutes to stand.
- Mash the applesauce with a potato masher or fork.
- When the water/sugar/fat mixture is warm but not hot, mix in the milk, yeast mix, applesauce and a pinch of salt.
- Add the flour and mix with a wooden spoon (or a food mixer with a dough hook) until it comes together, adding more flour a little at a time if it’s not coming together, then tip it onto a floured surface and knead for 5 minutes or until soft and elastic. Again if it stays sticky and not dough-like, add more flour a little at a time.
- Tip into a floured bowl, cover with cling film and let it rise for 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
- Roll the dough out on a floured surface until about half an inch (12mm) thick. Cut out circles with whatever you have available; I use a 3″ diameter pastry cutter, then a 1″ diameter metal jigger for the hole. You can reuse the scraps, but eventually I start making little 1″ dough balls.
- Place the onto floured greaseproof paper, cover with a tea towel and let rise for another hour or until doubled in size again.
- Heat oil in a medium-sized pot to 160-170c. I use a meat thermometer (I know), but use whatever you have available.
- Carefully slide the doughnuts into the oil and cook for around 2 minutes on one side, flip, then cook for another 2 minutes. If you put more than three or four in at a time, the temperature will drop too much and they will end up greasy. Remove them to a big plate or chopping board on top of a couple of sheets of kitchen roll. Avoid stacking them — they should be on a single layer to prevent them from going soft.
- When done, toss them in one of the following, using a bowl that’s a little bigger than the doughnuts.:
- Caster sugar: Just dump a lot of caster sugar in a bowl. Toss your doughnut around on both sides.
- Chocolate: Melt some chocolate (microwave, 10 seconds at a time), in the same size bowl. Coat it in caster sugar first if you wish, then dip one half into the chocolate and let it set.
- Maple glaze: Mix icing sugar with maple syrup (or just water) in a bowl — add a little liquid at a time, as you don’t need much. Like the caster sugar, coat the whole doughnut, then let it set.