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Round round get around I GET AROUND (round 1)

When initially explained, the construction of homemade doughnuts seems like a basic step on the path of yeasty delights. Providing, of course, that you have resolved the doughnut vs. donut spelling conundrum in a mature fashion. As someone who likes as many letters in her words as possible, I favour the d-o-u-g-h-n-u-t spelling. But let’s not reopen healing wounds.

M decided doughnuts were in order for Sunday brunch! I emerged from the yogatorium to find a bowl of yeasty dough being shaped: a round of rounds for all my friends!  It’s a simple, slightly sweet yeasted dough, with milk and sugar in it, but since we’re still refining technique, I won’t post a full recipe. But I wanted to show the essential steps:

Pre-doughnuts

Didn’t really let the doughnut dough rise very long at all — maybe ten minutes? Then M divided up the dough into approximately doughnut-sized pieces, which I then made toroidal through the delicate and subtle manouvre of shoving my thumb through and spinning. A few revolutions around the thumb and Bernard’s your puppy.

A simple and straightforward affair, no? No. Introduce the DANGER. Doughnuts, for all their Dutch wholesome cachet, are BOILED IN SIZZLING OIL! And that makes them the most dangerous breakfast pastry around. (At breakfast time, I think of them as a pastry, despite not being made of pastry, because they are sweet and go well with coffee. At all other times of day they are a cakie thing.)

Boiling oil before breakfast!

Take your quivering proto-doughnuts and plunge them into the oil! Don’t be frightened for them: this test is their coming of age! And like all comings-of-age, there are setbacks. The success of your doughnuts hinges entirely on the temperature of the oil. Too hot, the outside goes crispy before the interior cooks through. Too cold, the dough sucks up a LOT of oil and you end up with very thick-skinned pastries.  Neither I nor M have an oil thermometer, so it was a bit of a gamble. When you have cooked a doughnut, whisk it into the bowl of cinnamon and sugar you have waiting.  Be careful not to bite the hot-oil-laden-pastry too soon. Be sure to accidentally eat a lot of cinnamon and sugar. (Did anybody else have toast with just butter, cinnamon and sugar when they were kids? Man, that was…no? Just me? What about Milo on toast? No? Huh.)

This, despite its awesome sexy appearance, was a little thick-skinned — but pretty damn close to perfect.

Be jealous

Crunchy, hot, cinnamon-and-sugary and fluffy.  Ooooh yeah, this was an awesome breakfast, although definitely not the kind of thing you could eat more than once a month or else you’d keel over before you reached thirty. A breakfast of short-lived champions. We’re still refining the technique: M’s doing his bit by buying an oil thermometer, researching recipes and experimenting with different temperatures.  I’m doing my bit by eating the cinnamon and sugar. Together, we’re unstoppable!

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