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Home • Recipe • Donut • Custard Donuts
Published by Amy
Doughy little buns, stuffed full of delicious custard, before being rolled in a generous coating of sugar. Custard doughnuts are the top tier sweet treat.
When it comes to doughnuts, particularly of the filled variety, custard will always be my preference.
Don’t get me wrong, I do love a Jam Donut too – the flavour options you can get with them is truly endless. But when a choice of filled doughnuts are presented to me, custard always comes out top.
To make freshly baked custard donuts, you start with your dough. The dough is a rich yeast dough, made with milk, egg, butter, sugar, flour and yeast. You combine the ingredients, give them a good knead, then let the dough rest for a while.Once risen, you knock the dough back, before shaping into your individual doughnut balls.Another rise to get them nice and puffy, then your fry them too golden perfection.A little cooling time, then you can fill them with your custard of choice, before rolling in some excess sugar to finish.
There are a few steps to making custard doughnuts but none of those are particularly complex. The dough is the most time-consuming part of making fresh donuts, but that is due to the kneading and time taken to prove and rise your dough; it’s not that it is particularly difficult.Again, the cooking of donuts is fairly simple, although caution is required as it involves drying them in very hot oil.The most fiddly part of making fresh filled donuts is in the actual filling step. And that is more messy & trial-and-error, than it being particularly difficult.
Milk As donuts use a rich dough, you will need a little milk, butter/margarine, sugar and egg. Full-fat milk is preferable but it’s entirely up to you what kind you use. Dairy and soya are both good choices that I have had success with.
Butter or Block Margarine Butter will give the richest flavour to your donuts but margarine is actually what is used in most store-bought donuts, purely due to it being a cheaper ingredient. If using margarine, just be sure to opt for a block margarine, as opposed to a soft spread.
Strong Plain Flour Like many yeast-dough recipes, these jam donuts call for a strong flour. Strong flours give a slightly higher concentrate of gluten, meaning they bake with a stronger structure, which is perfect for catching the gas bubbles created from the yeast. A little bit of science in baking! A regular plain flour can be used in a pinch but you will need to knead it a lot more, to help make the most of the lesser amount of gluten.
Caster Sugar Again, with a rich dough a little bit of sugar is a must. And donuts are a sweet treat, so let’s make that dough extra indulgent! Caster sugar is preferable, as it’s finer texture mixes well with the other ingredients.
Instant Yeast There was a time when you could buy various types of yeast but nowadays, Instant Yeast is the most accessible. It also works brilliantly in many recipes but especially in Custard Donuts, as no extra measuring or preparation is required to activate it.
Free-range Egg An egg adds the final bit of richness you want in a squidgy little donut. The size of the egg is not crucial, just be sure to use free-range.
Custard When it comes to filling a custard doughnut, you of course need some custard! There’s a few ways to approach this… You can of course make your own custard from scratch, using eggs, milk and sugar. Alternatively, you can cheat a little and use a custard powder and make your custard this way. Or you can take my preferred route and use a ready-made custard! This can be “fresh” custard from the fridge at the supermarket, or simply a good old fashioned tin of custard.
• For evenly sized donuts, weigh your dough after knocking it back post-first-rise (step 5), then divide that number by twelve. Then weigh out each donut to that number, before rolling them into their balls.
• In the recipe, it suggests placing your dough-balls onto individual squares of greaseproof paper. This is a game changer!! You will then be able to move your donuts from tray/board to fryer with ease, and without compromising the structure of the now-perfectly risen dough.
• If you don’t already have a sugar thermometer, I highly recommend investing in one. This will allow you to closely monitor your oil temperature and ensure success whilst frying your donuts. Plus you can then use it to make our Scottish Tablet too!
• You can of course use a deep-fat fryer, if you have one.
• Using chop sticks to flip your donuts during frying is by far the easiest technique I have found.
• I cannot stress this enough… When working with hot oil, please please please be extremely careful. It is also worth having an awareness on how to deal with an oil fire before you start.
Dairy-free: You can easily make these dairy-free custard doughnuts by using a dairy-free margarine, a dairy-free milk of your choice (my preference is sweetened soya milk) and a dairy-free custard.
Nut-free: This donut recipe doesn’t use any nut ingredients but be sure to double check the allergens on each of your individual ingredients.
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Hello, I’m Amy, the voice-behind and creator-of Baking with Granny.
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