Doughnut Delights

picture11I have always loved doughnuts, but there are two places I’ve had doughnuts from that will forever stand out in my mind.  When my sister, Hanna, was living in Philadelphia, my family and I went to a restaurant that served Chinese doughnuts with chocolate, cream cheese, and blackberry dipping sauces.  My dad, who is not normally a dessert person, fought me over the last doughnut…they were that good!  The other doughnut that stands out to me is from a bakery in Boston where I used to work.  My other sister, Lucy, loved their jelly filled doughnuts, but they only made them on the weekends and they usually sold out in the first few hours of being open.  For today’s post, I’ve decided to do my best to combine these two doughnuts into one delicious doughnut: a blackberry jam filled, sugared, Chinese doughnut.  I think they turned out pretty good, but you guys will have to let me know what you think!img_3380


  • 1 cup           Milk, warmed
  • 2 Tbsp         Instant Yeast
  • 1/4 cup       Butter, softened
  • 3 ea              Egg Yolks
  • 1/3 cup        Sugar
  • 3 cups         Bread Flour
  • 1/4 tsp        Salt
  • 1/2 tsp        Chinese Five Spice
  • 1 jar             Blackberry Jam
  • 3 cups         Canola Oil


I know the Chinese five spice might make some of you nervous, so if you’d prefer not to use it you can use cinnamon instead, or just omit it completely.  You can also use any jam filling you’d like, I just love the combination of blackberry with the Chinese five spice.  If you have a deep fryer at home, this is the perfect opportunity to dust it off and plug it in!  If not, a pan on the stove will work just fine, it’s just a bit more difficult to control the temperature of your oil.

  1. The first step is the activate your yeast.  img_3345I always use instant yeast, but if you have active dry yeast, one packet of that will work for this recipe as well.
    In the bowl of your stand mixer, mix the yeast and warmed milk together.  If you are using active dry yeast, you will need to wait 10 minutes for it to become foamy/frothy.  If you are using instant yeast, like me, we can move on to the next step immediately.  If you have the kitchen aid bread making bowl for your mixer (this is at the top of my kitchen gadget wishlist), it would work wonderfully for this doughnut dough.

  2. Next, we are going to add our egg yolks, sugar, butter, bread flour, salt, and Chinese five spice to the mixing bowl with our yeast mixture.  If you don’t have any bread flour, you can substitute all purpose flour.  picture1Secure your mixing bowl to your stand mixer with the dough hook attachment and mix on speed 1 for 3 minutes.  Once your dough starts to come together, you can turn the speed up to speed 3 for an additional 6 minutes.  Your dough should come together in a ball and be smooth and elastic. picture2

  3. Next, remove the dough from your bowl, spray the bowl with pan spray, and return the dough to your bowl.  A bowl scraper is a great tool to assist in transferring the dough.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise for about 2 hours.  You could also leave the dough overnight in the refrigerator to proof, and continue the next steps tomorrow.  picture4

  4. After your dough has doubled in size, flour your work surface and place the dough on it.  Punch out any air bubbles in the dough (this is a great opportunity to work out any frustrations from the day).  Sprinkle some flour on top of the dough, and roll it with your rolling pin about 1/4-1/2 inch thick. picture5Normally, I would use a round cutter and cut doughnut and doughnut holes, but because I’m filling these doughnuts with jam, I cut them into squares. This way I won’t waste as much dough, as I wouldn’t advise re-rolling the scraps.  They won’t be quite as pretty as round doughnuts, so I guess I’ll call them rustic!  picture6

  5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and arrange the cut doughnuts on the baking sheet, leaving space for them to expand.  Spray the top of the doughnut lightly with pan spray and cover the baking sheet very loosely with plastic wrap.  Let the doughnuts sit for another 45 minutes to an hour, until they are slightly puffy.  picture7

  6. While the doughnuts are proofing, img_3355we can get the sugar coating and jam ready.  Mix about 2 1/2 cups of sugar with one tablespoon of Chinese five spice (or cinnamon) in a medium sized bowl and set it aside.  Next, fit a piping bag with a metal piping tip (if you don’t have a piping tip, you can just cut a hole in the piping bag), and fill the bag with your blackberry jam.  Set the jam aside until after we fry our doughnuts.

  7. Once your doughnuts have proofed and are slightly puffy, heat your oil.  I used a pot on the stove and a spider strainer.  If you have a deep fryer, that would work best.  You want your oil to be 350°F.  I used a digital thermometer to help me regulate the temperature of my oil.  Place a few doughnuts at a time in your oil, being careful not to splash yourself.  Turn them over after about 45 seconds and cook them until they are a golden brown color.  picture8Lift them from the oil with your strainer, or whatever tool you have chosen, and let the oil drip off for a few seconds.  Then place them directly into the sugar mixture and shake the bowl until they are fully coated with sugar.  Return them to the baking sheet.  Continue this process until all of the doughnuts have been fried.  picture9img_3374

  8. Once all of your doughnuts have been fried and covered in sugar, it’s time to fill them with jam!  Take a knife or skewer and use it to poke a hole in the side of your doughnut and widen it a bit to make room for your jam.  After you have made a hole in all of your doughnuts, get your piping bag full of jam ready.  Place the tip inside the doughnut, and squeeze about a tablespoon of jam into each doughnut. picture10

  9. After you’ve filled all of your doughnuts with jam, you’re finished!  Arrange them on a platter to serve, or just start enjoying them while they’re still warm!!  img_3380

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