Guys. This is so easy.
I’ve thought about making doughnuts before. I have. But I have always been too lazy to physically drag myself to buy a candy thermometer and pour inches of oil into a deep saucepan. That, my friends, is the painful extent to which I live my life. I really shouldn’t even be labelled a human. That’s too ambiguous a title, anyway. I came across this recipe on Shutterbean a while back, and just thought it absolutely genius. I love Shutterbean, and this recipe is particularly special because of the first two words in the title– yes, brown butter. That nutty joy sizzling away, that border between fine, white, original fat and trembling mess of hormonal goo. Browned butter is so divine, and god, the smell. That smell will lift you off your toes.
Back to the point.
They’re just great. And I mentioned easy, right.
Forgive the slightly paltry amount of bacon on that doughnut. I was eager to just catch the light here. Don’t worry, I piled a little more on later on. Remember that the texture is different to a normal fried doughnut, but this was sufficiently aerated, so you get the nice, slightly chewy and moist effect once you bite into its body. Mini little splendours, these. This is why I got a doughnut pan that Sunday morning. This is why I was in such a good mood after recovering from that horrible, ghastly bout of food poisoning, when I couldn’t even look at a piece of chicken. I’m just happy doughnut pans exist, for they make my own existence much more meaningful. I should hope so, anyways. Life is but a walking shadow, a poor player…
Brown Butter Baked Maple Bacon Doughnuts
Ingredients (makes 6 mini doughnuts)
For the doughnuts:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda (make sure this stuff is properly crumbled, or your mouth’ll taste of detergent later)
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar (give or take two tablespoons. If you like less sweet doughnuts, take away two. If you have an uncontrollable sweet tooth like me, then just leave it.)
- 29g unsalted butter, for the lovely browning process
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup buttermilk (you can make this by taking a half cup measurement, putting a half tablespoon of white vinegar inside, then filling up the rest of the half cup with good, whole milk. Please, no soy or almond milk!)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
For the glaze and crumble:
- 1 sifted cup confectioner’s sugar
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons whole milk (I used up to a half tablespoon more, so add milk drop by drop and keep whisking. Don’t. Stop. Whisking. It should have the consistency of angsty, thick glucose ribbons when you lift the whisk.)
- 4 strips bacon, cooked for around 8 minutes on medium heat on the pan, drained & crumbled to desired size
1. Place a rack in the middle of your oven and preheat oven to 177 degrees C (350 degrees F). Lightly grease a doughnut pan with cooking spray and put aside.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and sugar. Set this aside for now too.
3. Brown the butter: In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, melt butter. It will start to pop and crackle a bit. Wait for the water to evaporate; you will know when this happens once you get a distinctly nutty aroma, and the butter goes an almost-bronze tone. Don’t walk away from the stove because this part happens way too quickly. I failed the first time. I know. I’m human. Remove from heat immediately and put it aside for a while.
4. In a small bowl, whisk together egg, buttermilk (or whole milk and vinegar), vanilla extract and glorious browned butter (make sure the butter isn’t scalding hot, though).
5. Stir the wet into the dry mix. Do this until no weird bits of flour remain, but please, please do not overmix the batter!!
6. Transfer batter into a ziploc bag. Snip the tip with a pair of scissors (around 2cm across) and pipe batter into each cute little mold.
7. Place in the oven and bake for 8-9 minutes. Mine took exactly 8, and anything longer would have dried them out. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
8. Cook the bacon, as instructed above.
Now you can make the glaze. My favourite bit, if you ask me.
9. In a medium bowl, whisk (just a small whisk is fine) the confectioner’s sugar with maple syrup and vanilla extract. Add the milk in a thin stream, or drop by drop, to thin out the glaze. Add more or less according to how thick you want it, but ideally it should be thick and more on the opaque-side, especially if you live in cursed heat like me.
10. Dip one side of the doughnut into the glaze, and twist to make sure the entire top is evenly coated. When lifting, give it another twist and let the glaze pool and then drip off one side.
11. While glaze is still wet, add the bacon crumbles on top of each doughnut. Store in an air-tight container for the first day and refrigerate any left over.
I hope you make your own day, now.