In a fit of temporary insanity, I decided to make jelly donuts from scratch.
Ambitious, I know. Blame Hanukkah. Recipe adapted from foodnetwork.com.
4 cups white flour, plus more for dusting
1 teaspoon salt
1 envelope dry active yeast (2 1/2 teaspoons)
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons butter
1 cup INNA jam
1 liter Vegetable oil (I use canola)
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
Beat the eggs.
Melt the butter and leave it to cool.
Warm the milk. Don't boil it. Just warm it up for the yeast to get turned on.
half of the warm milk
2 tablespoons of sugar
1 packet of dry yeast
Give the yeast about 10 minutes to wake up and get foamy. It should look like this, or maybe even more foamy and white on top. It'll smell all yeasty like a bakery.
In a big bowl, mix:
the 4 cups of flour
the teaspoon of salt
the yeast mixture
the rest of the warm milk
the 2 beated eggs
the melted butter.
Once it's all mostly combined, turn the bowl onto a floured work surface and start kneading. And don't stop. For a while. As far as I'm concerned, this is really the key with yeast doughs. If you need to, set a timer - 5 to 10 minutes should be good. You want the dough to become elastic, kinda like bubble gum.
Put your newly created ball of dough in an oiled bowl. Turn it around in the bowl so that it gets coated with oil all over. set it in a warm place to rise (I leave mine on the stove. On top of the fridge is a good spot, too). Cover it (I use a plate). Let it rise for 2 hours. If you're lucky and your yeast is happy, it will double in size.
Punch it down, and turn it back onto the work surface. Knead it 2 times. That's right. Just 2 times. Then stop. This is the other key of yeast doughs. Knead it a lot the first time, and almost none at all the second time.
Roll out the dough to about a half an inch thickness and cut into circles.
I wanted a lot of small donuts, so I used a small cookie cutter. Re-roll scraps to make more.
Put the dough circles on a lightly floured surface, and cover with a dry towel. Let them rise for about 20 minutes.
And then, let the frying begin!
Pour an entire bottle of canola oil into a heavy pot with tall sides. Heat it on medium-high. If you have a deep-fry thermometer, then your kitchen is better equipped than mine. The oil needs to be at 350º. Since I don't have a thermometer that goes that high, I checked the temperature by putting a clean wooden chopstick into the oil - once bubbles come out from all over the chopstick, you know the oil is hot enough (it makes sense once you see it, trust me).
make sure to constantly turn the donuts as they fry, or else they'll be lopsided.
Once they're a LIGHT golden brown (don't overfry them), take them out. Let them cool on a plate lined with a few layers of paper towels. If your oil is hot enough then the donuts will come out light and fluffy and not at all greasy.
To get the INNA jam filling inside the donut, I suggest you use a pastry piping bag, or a large gauge syringe (a turkey-marinade-injector might work, or maybe you have access to medical supplies?). I didn't have either of these tools, and resorted to brute force (chopstick, ziplock bag and fingers). I highly recommend you avoid my mistakes and welcome tools into your life.
For the jams, I used 5th street PLUM, not too sweet STRAWBERRY, and channing way LEMON. I probably put about a teaspoon or two of jam into each donut, but really, just shove as much as you can in there.
Sprinkle with loads of powdered sugar.