Sunday, October 21, 2012

Apple Cider . . . Donuts?

Over the summer I purchased a couple of mini-donut pans thinking I would use them for a recipe my mom sent me (which I still haven't).  For at least a month, I've been staring at a recipe for apple cider donuts that I wanted to try.  After some tweaking to the recipe to avoid special order ingredients, I finally made the donuts.

So why the question mark?  They don't really look like donuts.  They look more like small cakes or mini-muffins with holes in them.  As much as I wanted to love these pans - I don't.  The cone in the center that's supposed to make the donut holes is just too large.  But the shape notwithstanding, I'm quite pleased with the flavor of my little "donettes"  (or maybe "dough-nots").

The tops:  The cider glaze soaked in overnight.  I'll have to work on that.

The bottom:  Do these look like donuts to you?

If you're interested in making these, there's some advance planning required.  You will either need to order the boiled cider from King Arthur Flour or make your own.  I chose to make my own.  It couldn't be easier if you have a slow cooker.  I poured one-half gallon of unfiltered apple cider into the slow cooker and let it go, uncovered, on low until I had about one and one-half cups of reduced cider.  You could also do this on the stove top with a wide, heavy-bottomed pot on low heat.  The original KAF recipe gives suggestions for alternatives, however, notes that you won't get the same flavor.  But the flavor is what these donuts are all about.

Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour.

Buttermilk Apple Cider Donettes
155g whole wheat pastry flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
40g reduced apple cider
115g buttermilk
30g unsalted butter, room temperature
25g vegetable oil
50g sugar
1 large egg, beaten

Special Equipment:  two mini donut pans; piping bag with large round tip (such as Ateco 804)

Preheat the oven to 400°F for at least 20 minutes.  Grease or spray the donut pans. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices.  Set aside.  In a measuring cup with a spout, combine the reduced apple cider and the buttermilk.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter, oil, and sugar on medium-high speed.  Reduce the speed to medium and drizzle in the beaten egg no more than one tablespoon at a time.  Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl.

On low speed, add one-third of the flour mixture then half of the cider/buttermilk mixture;  repeat, ending with the flour mixture.  Mix only until combined and finish with a rubber spatula to avoid over mixing.

Spoon the batter into the piping bag.   Pipe the batter into the prepared pans, filling at least three-quarters full. 

Bake the donuts for 8 to 10 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into one comes out clean.  (In my oven, 10 minutes was just a little too long for the mini pans.  I think 9 minutes would have been perfect.)  Remove them from the oven, wait two to three minutes, then turn them out onto a rack to cool slightly while you prepare the coating of choice.

Cinnamon Sugar Coating
100g granulated sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon

Whisk the sugar and cinnamon in a large, shallow bowl until well combined.  While the donettes are still warm (but not hot), gently dredge them in the sugar coating and place on a rack set over a baking sheet to cool completely.  Store in an airtight container for up to three days.

Cider Glaze
2 tablespoons reduced apple cider
1 tablespoon heavy cream
Approximately 113g confectioners’ or glazing sugar

Stir the reduced cider and cream together.  Gradually add the confectioners’ sugar to achieve the consistency of molasses.  Dip the tops of the donuts in the glaze and set them on a rack placed over a baking sheet to catch drips.  Alternately, you can drizzle glaze over the tops.  Store in an airtight container for up to three days.


  1. Oh yum! What a fabulous fall treat. There's something about apple cider donuts that always screams fall to me, and I would certainly classify these as donuts, particularly if they have that familiar taste. I went to the apple orchard recently and came back with a whole bunch of these that were promptly made into bread pudding.

    1. Bread pudding with apple cider donuts? I am SO stealing that idea!

  2. Love the recipe !! These look awesome to me - if u r not happy you can mail it to me :)))

    1. Thanks, Simi! I'm thinking about getting new (bigger) pans and having another go at it. The obsessive-compulsive in me wants them to look as good as they taste!


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