Most of us will be indulging this month. If you’re planning on making your own doughnuts, Tami Isaacs of Karma Bread shares her wisdom:
1. Knead to know
Properly knead the dough and get the surface of the raw doughnut really taut. This is crucial to give a ‘scaffolding’ for the gluten to develop into and hold its shape once fried.
2. Oil 'em up
Ensure the parchment on which you place the shaped doughnuts is well-oiled. It makes it easier to lift them off when you’re ready to fry.
3. Get a rise
Ensure they are properly proved (risen). They need to be really puffy, doubled-in size and billowy — almost to the point of collapse. You should just about be able to handle them.
4. Gently does it
Handle gently between parchment and pan, as that risen dough will be fragile!
5. Keep it clean
Use clean, sunflower oil, and ensure it’s the right temperature. Too hot and they’ll burn before cooking through; too cold and they’ll be oily. Aim for 190°C — the doughnuts should sizzle as they go into the pan.
6. Watch the heat
To get that lovely white ring around the side of your doughnut, the dough must prove properly and the oil temperature be just right. It will jump a little as it goes into the pan. Make sure you turn the doughnut halfway through frying, so it cooks evenly. Sometimes they turn over on their own.
7. Cool it
Hot doughnuts are fragile, so give them time to cool after cooking. Carefully place on kitchen paper on a wire rack to cool slightly. They should still be warm when you roll them in sugar, but fully cooled before you fill them.
8. Filling favourites
Get creative with your fillings. I do a range of flavours, from halva and stollen cream to tahini honey and jam. Having said that, simple jam and custard are still our most popular flavours.
9. Don't over fill
The ratio of filling to dough should be just right. No one wants to be searching for the stuffing, so be generous, but overstuffing with jam can end up looking like a massacre. Use a piping bag and nozzle or syringe to pipe in just the right amount.
Find out more about Karma Bread here.