Sunday, August 28, 2011

Maple Pumpkin Spice Donuts

Internets, I think I have a problem. I am totally, completely, head-over-heels in much so I can barely think about anything else. Every time I try to think about something else - like, say, when I'm lying in bed on a rainy morning with a hurricane swirling around outside - he sneaks into my thoughts, tempting me with his sweet, warm, seductive goodness.

Yes, I'm in love....with my donut pan :)

Seriously, this little item is one of the best inventions ever. I included my blueberry donut recipe in my blog about Maine , but I haven't written much else about how much fun I have with this pan. Traditional donuts are of course fried, and very tasty fried items they are too - love me a hot donut straight out of the fryer. (Okay, I love pretty much anything straight out of the fryer :) ). The donut pan is basically almost a sort of oddly shaped cupcake pan, with little posts in the middle of each depression.
my exact pan....from King Arthur Flour
Simply spray the pan with nonstick spray and fill with batter, and you'll shortly be enjoying all of the donut love with a fraction of the guilt. The donuts are dense - definitely of the old fashioned cakey type, not the yeast-risen Krispy Kreme type - and lend themselves to all sorts of flavor combinations. They bake fairly quickly...and nothing says love like a warm donut. Well, okay, not many things :)

The pans are available in a number of stores, but I happened to order mine from King Arthur Flour. They sell not only the pans but a variety of mixes that are actually pretty good - the chocolate one in particular is a knockout. However, you know us here at CO...gotta make it ourselves. Fortunately, there's lots of great recipes out there - including (I hope) this one.

The combination of maple and pumpkin is one of my very favorites (I make a killer maple pumpkin pie ), and I am lucky enough to live in New England where I have pretty good access to maple sugar. In a pinch, you could probably use light brown sugar and substitute a tablespoon of maple syrup for a tablespoon of the pumpkin - and definitely do the maple glaze instead of just dipping in sugar.

I should note that as compared to some other donut pan recipes, this batter is hella sticky - and they really don't smooth out as they bake and rise, so try and get the batter into the pan evenly if you want them level. A toothpick or a bamboo skewer work great for getting the batter around in the pan.

Enjoy !!

Maple Pumpkin Spice Donuts
makes 12 regular sized donuts*

2 cups flour
1 ½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. baking soda
1 heaping tsp. nutmeg
2 heaping tsps. cinnamon
½ cup maple sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
2 eggs
2 Tbl. buttermilk
¼ cup unsalted butter, room temperature

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Sift the flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, nutmeg and cinnamon in a small bowl. Set aside. Cream together the maple sugar, canned pumpkin, eggs, buttermilk, butter and vanilla extract until the butter is well incorporated. With your mixer on medium low speed, slowly add the dry sifted ingredients to the wet mixture. Mix until just barely combined. Be careful of over mixing.

Spray the donut pan with cooking spray and fill each donut mold halfway with the pumpkin batter. Bake at 375 degrees for 10 - 12 minutes or until the exterior springs back when touched. Allow to cool completely.

Dip in maple sugar or cinnamon sugar while warm, or glaze with the following glaze when cool...both are awesome !

Maple Glaze

½ cup powdered sugar
2 Tbl. maple syrup
½ tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. nutmeg

Mix until smooth and creamy, but still liquid - adjust ingredients as needed. Dip the top of each cooled donut into the glaze, then set on rack to dry.

Glaze will set better on completely cool donuts - though I did some warm and they were still pretty good. Just don't do it when they are roaring hot, or your glaze will melt.

*for mini donuts - bake 8-10 minutes.

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