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After a Super Bowl frying extravaganza party back in January, Allison and I have been discussing how we need to try making homemade donuts in one of our deep fryers.  We may have partially been influenced by the delightful description in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s “Farmer Boy” when Almanzo’s mom makes donuts and they sound like the most delicious food on earth.

What we made didn’t quite come close to that – but these came out surprisingly well!  Next time we just need to figure out how to get the strawberry jam into the donuts.  We ended up just smearing it on top!

We used an Emeril Lagasse recipe from Food Network’s website.  I skipped the mace and otherwise pretty much followed it exactly for making the donuts. The frying part was a bit different.  It does take a bit of time, so you want to plan ahead if you’re making them to give the dough time to rise.


  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 ounce (4 1/2 teaspoons) instant yeast
  • 1/4 cup sugar, plus more for coating
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons nonfat powdered milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup bread flour
  • Oil, for coating bowl


Put a pan over low heat and add 1/4 cup of the milk.  Cook the milk until it’s slightly warm (about five minutes).  Place the yeast in a small bowl with 1 tablespoon of the sugar and pour the heated milk over the yeast. Stir the milk into the yeast and allow it to bloom for 5 to 10 minutes.

What the yeast looks like after blooming

In a mixer, combine the remaining sugar (3 tbsps), butter, salt, and powdered milk. Mix until well combined. Add the egg, mix.  Then add the remaining 3/4 cup of milk.  I used my Kitchenaid and used a paddle attachment for this step.

Switch to the dough hook attachment and mix in the flours and yeast mixture.  Mix for 6-8 minutes at medium speed, until the dough is smooth.

Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel. Set aside to rise in a warm place until doubled in size, 1 to 1 1/2 hours.  The dough will be sticky, so just beware when you’re transferring it.  It’s a messy process!

After the dough rises, roll it out on a lightly floured surface until it is about 1/2 an inch thick.  Then take a biscuit cutter (or as I did, the top part of the jam jar!  Just give it a wash before putting it to use) and cut out the donuts.

Then they’re ready for the fryer!  If you own a fryer, follow the directions that come with the fryer for how much oil to use.  You want to set the temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fry each side of the donut for 2.5 minutes before pulling out to rest on a baking rack covered with a paper towl.

Before the donuts completely cool down, shake them with powdered sugar in a paper bag.  Then allow to cool completely before enjoying!

I have no pictures, unfortunately, of our failed filling attempts (I think our hands were too covered with jam).  We’ll be trying again soon – so we’ll share our results once we figure out the correct method!