17 March 2014

Eats: bacon maple doughnuts

Top o’ the mornin’ to you, dear readers! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

(Un)fortunately, that’s about as Irish as today’s post will be, as I’m not doing anything particularly St. Patrick’s-y today. Unless you count my quite obvious Irish genes, but that’s just a normal day around here for a redheaded stepchild.

Instead, I’m busting out the doughnut pan again for an incredible breakfast treat... or anytime treat, if I’m being real. The sounds-too-good-to-be-true recipe for baked bacon maple glazed doughnuts (whaaaat) comes again from my current kitchen role model, Tracy Shutterbean, she who convinced me that I needed a doughnut pan. She who is right!

Tracy’s recipe calls for buttermilk, which I never ever ever have on hand. Instead, I make my own with a half a tablespoon (give or take) of lemon juice added to a half-cup of regular 1% milk.

If you, too, need to MacGyver your own buttermilk, be sure to do this step first! Stir it up, then let it sit a few minutes to let the lemon juice do its work.

Next, let’s mix up the dry ingredients. So much more fun with my new pantry containers in the bright morning sunlight!

One cup of flour, 1/3 cup sugar, 3/4 teaspoon of baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon.

Tracy calls for some salt, too, but as I was using salted butter, I skipped the extra salt. Stir it up and set aside.

Hey, speaking of butter! Let’s brown some.

I told you about making browned butter the last time I made doughnuts, but I’ll remind you again here. You wanna go low and slow... until it starts to brown, in which you need to move FAST to get it off the heat! Browned butter walks that fine line, so be sure to stay on the good side of it.

Next come the rest of the wet ingredients. There’s the aforementioned buttermilk, an egg, and a teaspoon of vanilla.

The browned butter gets stirred into with those wet ingredients next, and if your wet ingredients are all cold, there’s no worry that the butter will cook the egg. Trust me... I let the butter cool and it just immediately turned into solid chunks and floated to the top. Oh well, the doughnuts came out in the end!

Ok, time to mix wet ingredients into dry!

You can see all the solidified butter in there, but no worries. Just gently stir it all together and it’ll be fine!

To fill the doughnut pan with the batter, I’d strongly recommend using the Ziploc-bag piping technique. I tried both that and just spooning in the batter when I made the peanut butter banana doughnuts, and there was no difference. This time, though, the batter is thick and sticky. Piping would be the better way to go!

Pop the pan in a 350-degree preheated oven for about ten minutes, then remove to cool!

Now. So far these doughnuts are pretty basic. Sure, the cinnamon gives them a bit of a kick, but you could cover these in powdered sugar – or heck, even eat them plain – and they’d be a nice little breakfast treat. But to make them the transcendent bacon-maple creations, they need... a bacon-maple glaze. Duh!

Start with a cup of powdered sugar, two tablespoons of maple syrup, and half a teaspoon of vanilla.

Then add no more than a tablespoon of milk to thin it out – it’s going to be even more drippy than you think, so err on the thick side.

And now... GLAZE! I just used a spoon and drizzled it over the doughnuts. Be sure to put a paper towel under your rack to catch the drips!

Oh goodness gracious. The only thing that could make this better would be... you guessed it.

BACON. A few strips, pre-cooked and crumbled!

You know, I don’t usually subscribe to the whole bacon-mania sweeping the internet. But... this is worth it. I promise. It’s like when you order pancakes with a side of bacon, and you get to eat the bacon after it’s soaked in the syrup runoff from the pancakes. Yum! The sweetness, the saltiness, all together to make your morning happy!

Best part is that these come together SUPER quickly – I could probably have thrown them together in a half-hour if I was at the top of my game! Mini-doughnuts are delightful that way. Enjoy!

Finally, this week’s completely-unreleated-to-St.-Patrick’s meal plan:

Sunday: homemade sausage pizza

Monday: East Side chicken & potatoes (a new recipe! will share!) with roasted broccoli

Tuesday: Chinese chicken with rice and veggies

Wednesday: spaghetti bolognese

Thursday: date night! Weird to have it in the middle of the week, but I’m traveling over the weekend. I’ll take it!

Friday: corn, chile, and cheese quesadillas with chips and salsa

Saturday: leftovers for Mr. P. I’m off to California!

That’s it, dear readers. Have a great week!