Sunday, October 31, 2010

It's Halloween! Time to Make the Doughnuts!

Given that we'll be eating Halloween candy all night, and probably in perpetuity the way Miss M and Boy Wonder collect and hoard candy, I made the healthful decision to serve homemade doughnuts for Halloween breakfast. The culinary stars were in alignment: I had whole buttermilk on hand, never-used doughnut cutters, a batch of cooking oil left over from last night's dinner party, and a bit of time. These circumstances sparked some latent doughnut-making ambition such that I simply felt COMPELLED to make and serve my family large quantities of sugary fried dough. A doughnut imperative, if you will.

Yeast intimidates me and waiting for dough to rise takes too long, so I opted for cake doughnuts. After mixing the sticky dough, Miss M helped me cut the doughnuts. She asked that I not post pictures of her in PJs, so you'll have to take my word for it: Miss M is very cute cutting doughnuts in her PJs.

We watched the cooking oil slooooooowly heat up. FYI, a watched pot of doughnut oil never gets to temperature. Fingers drumming.

First doughnuts in! The doughnuts sink to the bottom of the pan, then rise up with a golden crust in the shimmering oil. So far, so good.

But then. The doughnuts kind of fell apart. I'd like to call the look "hand-crafted doughnut," but that would be a stretch.

Here's the thing I learned: Big doughnuts are unwieldy and hard to cook thoroughly. Also, GREASY. After struggling through a few batches, I opted to shape the doughnuts into smaller discs that cooked up consistently and were much prettier.

These doughnut discs are easy to pop in your mouth and less of an eating commitment. I had three or four. As did everyone else. Actually, I'd say the Chez 500Jerk collective caloric ingestion is already somewhere in the 10,000 range. And we haven't had a real meal yet today.

It could be a VERY scary Halloween.

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