Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Chai Doughnut Holes

chai doughnuts

I can’t believe that four years ago today, I sat down to write my first blog post. That’s right, today is my blog birthday!! I thought I would make something special to celebrate the occasion. Last year I made “spicy ice cream” and this year I thought I would play with some other spices. Specifically cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger… can you guess where this is going? Chai doughnut holes!

chai doughnuts

I remember my very first cup of chai, and the heady, warm aroma of all the delicious spices. It’s now one of my favourite things, but I especially love it in winter. And it works especially well in this recipe. These doughnuts are absolutely delicious! By infusing the milk, the chai flavour really shines through in both the doughnut itself and also the glaze.

The dough is incredibly easy to make, based on the same recipe I used for these espresso zeppole. It’s a great, versatile recipe, and having tried it both ways, I can attest that it is just as easy to make by hand as it is in a stand mixer. And as you can imagine, they go down very nicely with a cup of hot chai ;)

And to all of my readers - every single one of you - I'd like to thank you for your visits and comments, which never fail to brighten my day!

chai doughnuts

Chai Doughnut Holes
Recipe adapted from Gourmet Traveller
Makes 24

• 2/3 cup milk
• 2 tablespoons loose leaf chai tea
• ½ cup pouring cream
• 225g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
• 1 teaspoon cinnamon
• 1 tablespoon dried yeast
• 30g caster sugar
• Vegetable oil, for deep frying

Glaze
• 150g icing sugar, sifted
• 3-4 tablespoons chai-infused milk, reserved
• 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Place milk and chai tea into a saucepan. Warm over low heat until almost boiling. Remove from the heat, cover with a lid and allow to infuse for 1 hour. Strain through a sieve and discard tea.

Measure ¼ cup of the milk and return to the saucepan with the cream, reserving the remaining milk for the glaze. Warm the milk-cream mixture over low heat until lukewarm (about 1 minute). Meanwhile, combine flour, cinnamon, yeast, caster sugar and a pinch of salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add cream mixture and knead until soft and smooth (2-3 minutes). Transfer to a lightly oiled bowl, cover and stand in a warm place until doubled in size (35-40 minutes).

Knock back the dough, and roll out to about 2cm thick on a floured bench. Cut rounds of dough with a 6cm round cutter, and place on a lightly floured tray, covered with a tea towel. Stand for 30 mintues or until risen.

Preheat oil in a deep-fryer or deep-sided saucepan to 180°C (350°F). Deep fry doughnuts in batches, turning occasionally, until golden and cooked through (about 3-4 minutes). Be careful as oil may spit. Drain on paper towels and allow to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, to make the glaze, place icing sugar in a bowl with chai-infused milk and vanilla extract and whisk to make a smooth, pourable glaze. Dip cooled doughnuts into glaze and place onto a cooling rack with a tray placed underneath to catch stray drips of glaze. These doughnuts are best eaten on the day they’re made.

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