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Cinnamon and Sugar Donuts and Happy Hannukah

A few months ago Danya and I were asked to lecture at the Blogo Conference, organized by the awesome women’s lifestyle website, Saloona [1]. It was there that we were first introduced to the lovely ladies of SisterMag [2], sisters Thea and Toni. SisterMag, based in Germany, is a woman’s digital magazine, focusing on topics like career, technology, fashion, lifestyle, traveling and DIY.

Thea and Toni gave one of the most beautifully designed presentations I had ever seen, that even before I checked out their magazine, I knew I liked their style. Directly from the conference we connected through Twitter, and now just a few months later, we have collaborated with SisterMag, for their Winter Holiday Edition, coming out next week.

We pitched to Thea and Toni the idea of doing a whole feature on fried foods, as homage to the food we eat during our winter holiday, Hannukah. They loved the idea and we ran with it. Here is just one of recipes that will be featured. Make sure to check the SisterMag [2] site next week to see the rest of the article.

Cinnamon and Sugar Donuts

These donuts remind me of my childhood in America. These are best when served warm. Good luck keeping them around for any longer.

Using a thermometer for this recipe is not mandatory, but it really does make the frying part much easier (knowing when the oil is too hot or too cold)!

Recipe Adapted from the donut queen herself, Lara Ferroni

Ingredients for about 10-12 donuts:

For the dough:

3 tablespoons active dry yeast or 2¼ teaspoons instant yeastor 25 gr. fresh yeast

1 cup whole milk, heated to 43°C

2½ cups bread flour, plus more for the work surface

2 tablespoons sugar

½ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 large egg yolks

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

Vegetable oil for frying

For the topping:

½ cup sugar

3 tablespoons cinnamon


1. Dissolve 2 tablespoons of the yeast in ¾ cup of the warm milk in a medium bowl. Add ¾ cup of flour and stir to create a smooth paste. Cover and let rest in a warm spot for 30 minutes.

2. Working with a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the remaining milk and yeast in the mixer bowl. Add the risen flour mixture, along with the sugar, salt, vanilla and egg yolks. Mix on low sweet for about 30 seconds. Add the butter and mix for another 30 seconds, until combined.

3. Switch to a dough hook and, with the mixer turned off, add remaining flour, about 1/4 cup at a time. On medium speed, knead the dough between additions until the dough pulls completely away from the sides of the bowl and is smooth and not too sticky. The dough will be soft and moist, but not so sticky that you can’t roll it out. (You may have flour left over.) Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 12 hours.

3. Line a baking sheet with lightly floured parchment paper. Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface to ½-inch thick. Using a donut or cookie cutter, cut out 3-inch-diameter rounds with 1-inch-diameter holes. You can re-roll the scraps and cut out additional holes.

4. Place the doughnuts at least 1-inch apart on the baking sheet and cover loosely with a clean dish towel. Let rest in a warm spot to proof until they almost double in size, 5 to 20 minutes, checking every five minutes. To check whether the dough has proofed, touch it lightly with a fingertip. If it springs back immediately, it needs more time. If it springs back slowly, it is ready.

5. While the doughnuts are proofing, heat a heavy-bottomed pot with at least 2 inches of oil until a deep-fat thermometer registers 360˚F (182°C). With a metal spatula, carefully place a couple of doughnut holes or doughnuts in the oil, being careful not to crowd the pot. Fry for 1 to 2 minutes on each side, until light golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon, drain on a plate lined with paper towels, and let cool slightly. Repeat with the remaining donuts and holes, keeping the temperature consistent.

6. In a bowl, mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Place mixture on a flat plate, and roll the warm donuts in the mixture until covered on both top and bottom. Serve warm.