Monday, September 17, 2007

Doughnuts & Coffee: Wish You Were Here

Sourdough Cinnamon Doughnuts with a Latte

As a young girl growing up in the wild, northern, Yukon Territories, I didn’t know the whole history behind the term ‘sourdough’ and how it traced back to the Klondike Gold Rush, but I did know that I loved sourdough bread and baking. Those days, one of the biggest treats we could be allowed to make were sourdough doughnuts—just the combination of sugar and fat was enough to make my mother cringe and make me jump up and down with anticipation.

I recently dug up that old recipe from an even older cookbook that my mother started when she got married, and decided to give it a shot. Boy was I glad I did! There is only a slight 'sour' taste, but enough to give these delicious treats a uniqueness you certainly won't find at Dunkin.

These doughnuts contain both yeast (in the sourdough starter) and baking powder, so they are right in the middle of a cake doughnut and a yeast. Even if you have a strong preference for one or the other, either way, you will love these.
Not that it should be a problem, but they are best eaten the day they are made.

I can’t tell you how many of these I ate while I was photographing them...I'm embarrassed. Sure it was a trip down memory lane, but it was a really loooong trip--and I'm not that old yet!

As I looked at the platter of doughnuts, I had to resist to urge to run out of the house, down the street, bang on all my neighbors doors and say "You HAVE to taste these!”
What a shame, there was no one at home to share them with. And let me tell you, warm from the pan, coated in vanilla sugar, you should have been here.

Fortunately, a friend dropped in later with her two little girls and we enjoyed them with some spiced chai.
These tiny doughnut holes are perfect for little fingers....


Fresh from the oil

Dressed up with vanilla sugar

Sourdough Starter

2 cups flour
2 cups lukewarm water
1 tablespoon yeast

Mix well in a large bowl. Cover and let sit overnight in a warm place.

Sourdough Cinnamon Doughnuts

½ cup sourdough
2 Tablespoons oil
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 egg
2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sour milk

Prepare a wok or deep fryer for frying. Prepare a tray with paper towel for draining doughnuts. Heat oil to 360 degrees.

Sift dry ingredients together. Mix remaining ingredients together and add to dry. Bring dough together gently with you hands. Sprinkle some flour onto a work surface and turn dough on to it. Knead it gently about 3 times to help bring the dough together. Roll out to a thickness of 2 centimeters and cut with a doughnut cutter.

Fry until golden brown. Test the first one for doneness by breaking it in two and checking if the middle is doughy. Drain on paper town. Toss with vanilla sugar or cinnamon sugar to coat.

Enjoy!


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