It’s been a productive and busy start to the year, which is why I was especially pleased to have almost an entire Sunday with nothing to do. In that regard, I decided to cook TWO new things this week! For a cold, New England Sunday, I made apple cider doughnuts and New England Clam Chowder.
Week: 2 of 52
Apple Cider Doughnuts
Ok, who in New England doesn’t love these? Apple picking season has ended and these can’t be picked up from your local orchard anymore. But, as long as you can get apple cider (just barely still available), you can make them at home in just over an hour. We had some on hand from Carlson Orchards in Harvard, MA which they sell at Whole Foods. You can find recipes online; sadly none of my cookbooks are that New England-centric.
As with most dough, the wet ingredients are mixed together (including reduced apple cider) first. Next, you slowly blend in the dry ingredients, including cinnamon and nutmeg. Once blended, turn the dough out on a floured surface and roll it out, adding flour as needed. At this point, you’re supposed to cut it with a doughnut cutter. Yes, apparently there is such a thing. And no, I don’t own one. In one week I have suddenly gone from having a well-equipped kitchen to missing some key items. How have I survived this long without a doughnut cutter???
Instead, I used a small prep bowl to cut the bigger circle and then a shot glass to cut out the “hole”. And somehow they sort of looked like a doughnut.
Pop these in the fridge to chill before frying. You can prep the oil while they chill. A note on frying – you almost never need as much oil in the pan as the recipe says. In this case, the recipe called for 3″. I used about 1″ of oil and it worked just fine. Just keep an eye on the temperature of the oil, as it will be easier for it overheat with less oil! Best to have a candy/fry thermometer for this, if you don’t have a deep fryer (again, I do not).
These shouldn’t take longer than a minute a side. When done, you can drain on paper towels and then toss in cinnamon sugar while still hot. Finally, cool on a rack and they’re ready to eat. And delicious!
My makeshift cutting method clearly made for some funny shaped doughnuts, but hey, they still tasted good! After snacking on one or two, I had to send the rest with JP to give to his family, or I think I would have eaten them all.
- Reduced Apple Cider
- Buttermilk (make your own if you don’t have any on hand by mixing one tablespoon white vinegar with a cup of milk and letting it sit for 5 minutes)
- The other ingredients are pretty standard in any kitchen
- Parchment Paper
- Cookie Sheet
- Doughnut Cutter or other makeshift cutting device
- Fry Thermometer
- Stand or hand mixer
- All-Clad Cookware (or a deep fryer)
- Cooling Rack
I’ll post the chowder next. Enjoy!