Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Mini Double Chocolate Cake Donuts

As you're reading this, I am relaxing somewhere on the island of Grand Cayman.  Yes, my friends.  I am on va-ca-tion.  I'm sure I'm loving it.  Most of that probably also has to do with the fact that it's barely spring in the Northeast and it's definitely much warmer down here.

Unfortunately, the, uh, "preparation" I needed to make it here and hang out in public in my bathing suit required me to pack up these delicious baked donuts and remove them from my kitchen the same day that I made them.  Because it makes sense to bake chocolate donuts even when you can't eat them.  That's practical, right?  Sure.

To be completely honest, I did have to taste test a few of these suckers.  I'm always skeptical about the freshness factor of baked donuts.  I don't think they taste as good a day or two after they're made.  Since I sent these donuts out in three different batches, I had to taste three of them to make sure they were still as good as when they were made.  I do have a reputation to keep, you know!  (They were fine, by the way.)

You also don't have to make these into mini baked donuts.  You could use a regular-sized donut pan, but seeing as I don't have any of those, mini donuts it is!

Mini Double Chocolate Cake Donuts
slightly adapted from Joy the Baker
makes 18 mini donuts or 10 regular donuts

For the donuts:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1) Place a rack in the upper third of the oven.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Spray a mini donut baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

2) In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, and brown sugar.
3) In a small bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, egg, melted butter, and vanilla extract until combined.

4) Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and fold the batter together until all of the ingredients are well combined.  Make sure all the flour on the bottom of the bowl is also incorporated.

5) Pour the batter into a large plastic storage bag.  Seal the bag, then cut a small hole in a bottom corner of the bag.  Squeeze the batter through the hole to allow for easy filling of the prepared donut pan.  Each donut mold should be about 2/3 full.

6) Bake the donuts for 10-12 minutes, or until a toothpick or knife inserted into one of the donuts  comes out clean.

7) Remove the donuts from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before inverting the donuts onto a wire rack to cool completely.  Allow the donuts to cool completely before glazing.  Repeat the baking process until all of the batter is turned into donuts.

For the chocolate glaze:
  • 1 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • big pinch salt
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons whole milk
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • donut toppings (sprinkles, sugar crystals, etc)

1) In a medium bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and salt.

2) Add 2 tablespoons of the milk and all of the vanilla extract.  Whisk to combine.  The mixture may be thick.
3) Add milk, a tablespoon at a time, until the glaze is thick but still pourable.

4) Dip each donut into the chocolate glaze.  Shake off any excess glaze.

5) Return to the wire rack and sprinkle with any toppings desired.  Allow the donuts to rest for several minutes so the frosting is able to harden slightly.  Donuts are best served within two days of baking.

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