Wednesday, October 27, 2010

A Fall State of Mind


Both Sara and I are missing the typical New England fall a little bit these days.  Crunchy leaves.  Crisp weather.  Apple picking.  Cider and donuts.

So we were excited for this challenge, as it gave us the opportunity to make our own donuts--a first for both of us--and enjoy some fall traditions.  We heated up some home-made hard cider and made a roasted pumpkin dish for a hearty lunch to fuel our donut making.



The smiley face we found on our pumpkin foreshadowed the ones on our faces throughout this challenge.  Donuts were fun to make, and, of course, even more fun to eat. We decided to do a batch of pumpkin pie-spiced yeasted donuts and a batch of traditional cakey cider donuts. (A big thank you to Cat - master of reduction - who helped us out with the cider donuts.)


Exciting times: Sara hosted our monthly challenge in her new apartment.  And we got to use her new mint green mixer.  Isn't it lovely?  Doesn't that cider look tasty?  (It was.)


We were a little worried about the yeasted donut dough because it was quite sticky and required a lot of extra flour, but it ended up turning out fine.  We got creative with our donut cutting implements--a martini glass for the outside, and a champagne glass for the inside.  Sara's abundant glassware is one of the many reasons that she needs to host a party in her new digs.


The yeasted donuts looked perfect, and here they are about ready to rise.


The cider donut dough was also a little sticky, but similarly worked out in the end.  As you can see, our first attempt at cutting these smaller donuts with glassware resulted in a too-big hole.  So we opted to cut the center hole by hand, with great results.


Waiting for the oil to heat up to perfect frying temperature...  Aren't the little swirlies neat?


Frying the donuts!  This was so exciting to do, though a little scary since we discovered that Sara's apartment did not come with a fire extinguisher.  We were pretty sure her neighbors had one.  Luckily, we never needed to find out.


 Frying the little donut holes.  It was neat to see the yeast donuts immediately float on the surface, whereas the cider donuts sank, and then gradually floated up.



The finished product!  Our donuts turned out beautifully.  One of our more aesthetically pleasing challenges, which is pretty rare for us.



More importantly, they were absolutely delicious.


And in the spirit of fall, donuts and Halloween:




The October 2010 Daring Bakers challenge was hosted by Lori of Butter Me Up. Lori chose to challenge DBers to make doughnuts. She used several sources for her recipes including Alton Brown, Nancy Silverton, Kate Neumann and Epicurious.

The donut recipes we used were:

8 comments:

Emily said...

WOW! those look GREAT!! care to repeat the fea(s)t on tuesday, november 23rd? :)

Cat said...

No shout out for me? As I recall I did an excellent job reducing the cider.

EMS said...

Emily - Wish you had been here to enjoy them! I'd definitely consider a repeat if I'm in town 11/23 (TBD).
Cat - now you have your shout-out :-P

Susan: My Food Obsession said...

They look fantastic :)

Audax said...

Well I'm impressed they sound so delicious and I bet were tasty yes they do look very nice well done on this challenge. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

Cat said...

Hooray! :D

Shilpa said...

yum! jealous!

Nadia said...

great work!