Hands down, this post has been the most popular post over the last year and a half for two reasons I believe: 1) Gingerbread doughnuts. ‘Nuff said. 2) My dog’s ridiculous tongue photo shoot. So here you go, while my kitchen is being finally finished…I have decided to repost this doozy.
O.K. friends, these soft and spicy gingerbread doughnuts are honestly one of the best things I have ever created. Did you catch that?!!! I created this doughnut recipe!!! I am very excited about this fact. Can you tell? The number of exclamation points are exponentially related to how excited I am.
Since blogging, I have finally moved past reading recipes and am now in the creative phase of my baking obsession. Don’t get me wrong; there are plenty of times I follow recipes, but lately I find I am inventing them more than following them, and I am pretty dang pleased with my results.
I know, I have a grandiose impression of my mad skills in the kitchen and I am oh so humble about it. Sorry. It’s a pretty big personality flaw; I realize this. I’m not really planning to work on that part of myself though because I have much bigger fish to fry. There’s a whole mess of other stuff that ranks higher on my list of self-improvements so I wouldn’t hold your breath for this blog to improve its social etiquette anytime soon.
Back to the doughnuts—I really wanted a gingerbread doughnut this morning with a big cup of hot coffee doused with a teensy bit of eggnog (and rum?). After rummaging around the internet, I decided there wasn’t one recipe that hit the flavor profile I was going for. So I decided to meld a few ideas together from here and there and go for it.
They turned out exactly like I was imagining they should be. This recipe combines some ideas from a pumpkin doughnut on an Edible Mosaic while adding some bits from an apple-spice doughnut I found on Food Network.
These next few shots are my favorite ones of all time on this blog. My dog, Sadie, was watching me take some photos of this apple on a swinging bench we have in the backyard. As I was snapping away and checking my viewer, I started to realize that a tongue was randomly making a guest appearance now and then.
Sadie had worked her way under the bench and was trying to lick the apple through the slats. The swinging bench would move and she would try again. Kind of like bobbing for apples upside down. To no avail she worked tirelessly to get that apple off the bench where she could eat it in its entirety.
I hope this goes without saying, but this apple DID NOT make it into my recipe. Notice dog slobber is not on the list of ingredients anywhere. I have standards.
O.K., now that we have finished with the comic relief, back to the yummy doughnuts. They are lightly spicy, without hitting you over the head with ginger, just a touch sweet—not syrupy sweet. Their texture is cake-y and soft with just that perfect crunch on the outside.
The garnish you see there is candied ginger. Although it didn’t look pretty, it tasted nice on the doughnuts.
I made two different icings trying to try to decide which was the better pairing; maple icing or eggnog icing. Rum did not make it into any icing but I have a hunch that brushing the tops of the doughnuts with rum and adding a little bit to the eggnog icing would be just fine. Both icings were a lovely match to the ginger and spice flavors.
I hope you enjoy making these doughnuts…perhaps for a festive Holiday Brunch. They are tedious and best served the same day they are fried. If you make the dough the night ahead and fry them in the morning, it will make the morning a lot easier.
Gingerbread “Cake” Doughnuts
Recipe by Geni of Sweet and Crumby
Make about 20 medium-sized doughnuts and doughnut holes.
1/4 c. shortening, 0% hydrogenated oils
1/2 c. DARK brown sugar (this has more molasses than light) packed
1/2 c. granulated sugar
2 T. dark unsulphured molasses
1 c. of peeled apples (any sweet variety), grated and chopped
1/4 c. Canola oil
1 t. vanilla extract
5 c. flour (FIVE…this is not a type-0)
2 tsp ground ginger
2 t. ground cinnamon
3/4 t. ground cloves
3 t. baking powder
2 t. salt
1/2 c. buttermilk
1/2 – 1 c. more flour added for rolling out
Gallon sized container of Canola oil or Vegetable Oil for frying
Candied ginger, mini chocolate chips and or sprinkles for garnish
Maple Glaze (you may want to cut this in half if you plan to make both icings)
Taken directly from Under the High Chair
2 cups confectioner’s sugar
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
2 Tablespoons corn syrup
1 Tablespoon water
(optional: few drops maple flavoring)
2 c. of sifted powdered sugar
6 T. Eggnog (add more if you need to thin it out)
For the Doughnuts: Peel, grate and chop 2 apples, preferably the grating and chopping will be done in your food processor. I don’t think I have it in me to do all that by hand but if you do, have at it.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together shortening and sugars until fluffy. Add molasses through vanilla and combine on medium speed. In a separate LARGE mixing bowl whisk together the flour through the salt. Slowly, add 1/3 of the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Combine then add 1/3 of the buttermilk.
Repeat until all of the flour and buttermilk has been adequately incorporated. Beat on medium for about a minute until all of the ingredients are well combined. Notice my batter resembles a thick muffin type of batter, rather than bread dough. I let it rest like this but when it was time to roll out, I added flour 1/4 a cup at a time up to 1 cup until it looked and felt like soft, pliable bread dough. This dough is not as firm as bread dough but not loose like a cake batter.
Let stand for at least two hours. If you are making this the night before, place the dough in plastic wrap and then inside a Ziploc bag. If the mixture is too wet to wrap adequately, you can add another 1/2 c. of flour at this time (up to one whole cup) and work it in with your HANDS until a dough forms. Note the consistency of the final dough consistency in the picture below.
Place oil in a large stock pot, about 1/2 full (about five-six inches of oil). Clip a candy thermometer to the side. This is important. Your oil needs to get to 250 degrees Fahrenheit. Heat the oil over medium to medium-high heat. Layer paper towels on a cookie sheet near where you will be frying your dough.
Dust flour onto a pastry board. If you did not add flour previously, this is the time to do it. Add flour, 1/4 c. at a time (up to 1 c. total), and work flour into dough with your hands until a pliable, soft dough forms. Divide the dough into two portions and roll out your first portion.
Use a round cookie cutter to cut the dough into doughnut circles. I used a cap of my pourable 1/2 gallon of milk carton to cut out the doughnut hole. It worked great! Flour your cap in between each cut. Roll out the left-overs of the first portion of dough and repeat until you have cut out the first half of the dough.
When the oil has reached 250 degrees, use a slotted spoon to carefully place the doughnut circle into the oil. You can fry three doughnuts at a time. Any more and you will crowd the pot and you won’t have uniform frying. Fry the doughnuts for two minutes a side. Have a cookie sheet ready with paper towels layered on them. Carefully drop the doughnuts onto the paper towels and pat with the towels to remove excess oil.
Finish the first half of frying your doughnuts and then make the glaze.
For the glaze: With either glaze, use the bowl of a stand mixer, place all ingredients and beat with paddle attachment until smooth. The glaze should be fluid but hold up to a doughnut being dunked upside down in it. After dunking half of the doughnut in the glaze, let it stand a minute and then dunk again. This makes for a nice thick coating.
Repeat all steps above to fry-up the second half of your doughnut dough.
December 3, 2011 at 11:25 am
Hahahaha cutest thing ever. I love your dog. Lexie would never have the patience to put in that kind of effort. 🙂
December 3, 2011 at 11:31 am
Too cute 🙂
And darn delicious recipe!!
December 3, 2011 at 11:49 am
The doughnuts look fantastic but that tongue is awesome, and kind of yucky at the same time.. i love it!! c
December 3, 2011 at 12:09 pm
Ohhhhhh. These look soooooo good! I wish I could have some of these right now! But those pictures of your dog with the apple are definitely the highlight! That is too darn cute!
I like the candied ginger. Mr. N loves that stuff -eats it like candy. 😉
December 3, 2011 at 1:08 pm
You’re always posting the yummiest goodies!! If you ask me, you could post them 20 times and people would still love to see them and make them!!
December 3, 2011 at 3:37 pm
Well, of course you should be proud of this recipe. Your donuts sound incredible. You and I should vow, here and now, that Sadie and Max never be allowed to meet. I fear civilization, as we now know it, might not survive. OK. That may be a bit of an exaggeration but surely you’ll agree that no good would come of it. 🙂
December 3, 2011 at 4:00 pm
Hilarious “audience participation” on Sadie’s part. 😀
These doughnuts look beyond fabulous. I switched my allegiance from risen to cake doughnuts some time back, and a gingerbread version with those two glazes–well, I’m feeling quite faint from the whole dizzying beauty of the idea right now. I’ll get back to you when I’ve regained my equilibrium enough to make, devour and review this recipe!!! Thanks, Geni!
December 3, 2011 at 5:30 pm
I’m so glad you reposted this, because I love donuts and as you wrote…Gingerbread doughnuts? ‘Nuff said. The pictures of your dog are priceless.
December 3, 2011 at 8:35 pm
Wow, this looks amazing! I just posted a simple spiced apple cider donut recipe the other day but used the Wilton donut pan. Donuts must be on all our minds! I love the photo of your cute dog licking the apples…..precious!
December 3, 2011 at 10:42 pm
hehe…that’s a really fun click!
I love those doughnuts too.
December 4, 2011 at 12:18 am
Ohhh, doughnuts I would go nuts for this one.
December 4, 2011 at 5:05 am
I really love that dog of yours. They are so much fun to have around. I have a neighbor who has a dog. Just one look at him makes my day. A the fun, innocence & enthusiasm is infectious.
Oh! This is a doughnut post, well this is what happens when you have more adorable beings around. Those doughnuts look delicious. Can I bake them? I have a bit of an aversion to deep frying.
December 4, 2011 at 7:00 am
Love the pup! She really did give it a good try, didn’t she? LOL! Cute 🙂 I have three dogs, no food is safe near them!
The doughnuts look fantastic.
December 4, 2011 at 2:48 pm
Those pictures are hysterical!
December 4, 2011 at 8:12 pm
The tongue pics are hilarious! And your homemade donuts are really impressive!
December 4, 2011 at 10:58 pm
Absolutely, positively 100% worth reposting! GREAT donuts and Sadie is adorable!
December 5, 2011 at 8:07 am
Congrats on creating these donuts! And the tongue pics are hilarious!
December 5, 2011 at 11:30 am
Hahaha your dog is awesome!!! And the donuts look amazing. Great job on creating them 🙂
December 5, 2011 at 12:41 pm
I love it….all!! donut and tongue! I’m really impressed with your homemade donuts and that they are gingerbread! Your family is definitely spoiled with you in the kitchen! I don’t really think your son will leave for college if you keep this up!
December 5, 2011 at 2:50 pm
Geni, this is absolutely insane! You tempt us with gingerbread donuts…but then you add maple glaze AND eggnog glaze?! It’s not even fair! This sounds too good to be true. It must be destroyed! 🙂
December 5, 2011 at 3:18 pm
Look at you, Geni! Creating recipes like it ain’t no thang. These doughnuts look ridiculously amazing. I must make them…but then I’m pretty sure I’d eat all of them in one day. Those photos of the apple and Sadie’s tongue are hysterical. Makes me miss my pup back home!
December 5, 2011 at 3:56 pm
Not gonna lie…I’m usually SO not a fan of cake-y donuts. But yours look so moist! And ginger-full! I’m in love.
December 5, 2011 at 9:52 pm
I am sooo glad you reposted this! It made my day! The doughnut… the flavors… and your dog’s tongue… pure blogging heaven!
December 6, 2011 at 1:40 pm
These look SERIOUSLY good, I never knew doghnuts could be Christmasy! Aren’t you the clever clogs that comes up with new recipes!! Well done, they look amazing and I’ll be giving them a go – minus the eggnog glaze as it’s not available here.
December 6, 2011 at 1:59 pm
You did such an amazing job with these gingerbread donuts. And that beautiful Sadie just look too cute and funny for words. I guess she’s thinking.. “No apple left behind” lol
December 6, 2011 at 7:01 pm
How the heck did I miss this?!? Darn that WP Reader sometimes (well, a lot of time). I adore, adore, adore Sadie’s tongue – our dog loves apples, too – and will try his dardest to steal them from the boys. Funny! These doughnuts look delectable – a perfect treat to re-share with us all. Still crossing my fingers about your floors. XX
December 7, 2011 at 9:40 am
I just “discovered” you from ChgoJohn’s blog and these doughnuts look amazing. And what great fun are those tongue shots…hilarious! Love your writing.
December 14, 2011 at 3:31 am
This made me smile dear Geni, you dog is amazing, I didn’t know how they love apples… This gingerbread doughnut fascinated me. I usually buy from a bakery but I always wish to make myself too. Thank you, with my love, nia