Today is my husband’s birthday, and to celebrate, I started his day with a mega breakfast: coffee, fresh mango-carrot-orange juice, bacon, Gruyere-chive baked eggs, and . . . Thomas Keller’s cinnamon-sugar doughnuts.
This recipe is from Thomas Keller’s The French Laundry Cookbook. At his acclaimed restaurant in Napa Valley, Chef Keller serves these doughnuts for dessert with cappuccino semifreddo (“Coffee and Doughnuts”). However, not (yet) owning this “gourmet guidebook,” I first saw this doughnut recipe on one of my favorite blogs, Not So Humble Pie, and I have been waiting for a special occasion to use it. Since Brandon is a bit of a doughnut fanatic (who isn’t?), I thought that his turning a year older deserved a bowl full of doughnuts.
I started the dough for the doughnuts last evening. They do need a full night to proof, but for the most part, the recipe was surprisingly easy. After making the dough in my stand mixer*, I put the covered mixing bowl in the refrigerator and woke up an hour before I wanted to serve the doughnuts to roll out the dough and allow them to rise.
I realize that this recipe may seem a bit intimidating. It requires using yeast and deep-frying: two “scary” tasks. However, I am always a little nervous when making yeast dough, and—full disclosure—I’ve never deep-fried anything before. In the end, I don’t know what I was worried about. I followed the recipe to “a tee,” and the doughnuts turned out perfectly airy and light. Brandon was a very happy birthday boy—that is, until he had to go to work. Continue reading