If you find yourself with a little bit of extra time this weekend, make these doughnuts. They are super easy and can be prepared the night before and then baked off just before you want to eat them. Then you can come back and thank me. Who doesn't love doughnuts? Unfortunately they are not so friendly towards the daily diet with their deep fried fattiness. This baked version is definitely lightened up, but as with any baked goods, you should definitely go easy on them. Although it is understandably difficult to stay away from them. Especially when they are just so wonderfully soft and just sweet enough. Next time I want to try these with different glazes, but I loved the crunchy cinnamony texture of the cinnamon sugar. I can't wait to make these treats again!
(From Apricosa and 101 Cookbooks)
Makes a lot of 3-inch doughnuts
For the doughnuts
2/3 cup warm milk, 95 to 105 degrees (divided)
1 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
1 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup sugar
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for kneading
1/8 teaspoon freshly-grated nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
1/2 cup milk
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon
Place 1/3 cup of the warm milk in the bowl of an electric mixer. Stir in the yeast and let sit for five minutes until the yeast gets foamy. Meanwhile, stir the butter into the remaining warm milk to melt it. Add the remaining milk, butter, sugar, egg, flour, nutmeg, and salt to the yeast and mix together with the paddle attachment, then switch to the dough hook and continue mixing until dough is smooth and pulling away from the sides of the bowl, adding more flour if dough is sticky or more milk if too dry.
Turn dough out onto a lightly-floured surface and knead a few times (dough should be barely sticky), shape into a ball and place in an oiled boil, turning to coat the dough with oil. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1-2 hours.
Punch dough down and roll it out onto a lightly-floured surface to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut out 3-inch circles and transfer them to parchment-lined cookie sheets. Then cut out 1 1/2-inch circles from the centers. Loosely cover the donuts with plastic wrap.
At this point, you may either let the donuts rise for 45 minutes and proceed to bake them, or refrigerate them overnight. After refrigeration, let donuts rise 1 hour in a warm place. Bake at 375 degrees just until donuts take on a golden tinge, about 8-10 minutes.
While donuts are baking, pour the 1/2 cup milk into one bowl and mix the sugar and cinnamon in another.
As soon as the donuts are done, dip the tops of the donuts in the milk and then press into the cinnamon sugar. Work quickly to finish this while the donuts are still hot (the heat will melt the sugar slightly, helping it to stick and form a divine crunchy layer). Serve donuts warm from the oven