Sunday, September 9, 2012

Mmm…Donuts (or alternatively, Going Back to Sleep Fantasy)

Last week I got on a kick to make homemade donuts (or is it doughnuts?  I think both are acceptable spellings…I’m going with donut since it’s shorter).  I was determined to make them this weekend and told my daughters of my plan.  I did some surfing to find a good recipe and then realized my recipe of choice required yeast and time for the batter to rise.  Ok, so I’m realizing this Friday night when we are at one of my favorite places, Target, buying ingredients. We have a playdate Saturday morning and a birthday party at an apple orchard Sunday morning.  A realistic, stress-free person would have just said, let’s try another weekend.  Me?  I’m determined to have homemade donuts.  So I pick Sunday as donut day.  I plan on waking up at 6:30am to combine the dry/wet ingredients so it could sit for 1 ½ to 2 hours.  Then the plan involved me sliding back into bed and sleeping until the girls woke up (they sometimes sleep in, Sundays being the more likely of the two days because we don’t do a mandatory nap on Saturdays anymore).  I expected I would wake up to the sounds of them watching toons downstairs around 8am.  Perfect.

So Saturday night I put the dry ingredients together just to have a few less steps to do Sunday morning at 6:30am.  I feel so organized.  Moody (3 1/2) helps me sift the ingredients and she’s happy, she got to help Mom.  Drama (6) gets pissed that she didn’t get to do anything.  “What can I do?” she asks.  My girls love to cook and bake and I have them help me all the time.  These are my most admirable patient moments in Studmuffin’s (husband) mind.  I tell Drama that she can help frost/sprinkle the donuts after I fry them.  She’s satisfied with my response and enjoys the fact that Moody doesn’t get to put sprinkles on (oh, these two love making the other jealous).

Studmuffin and I watch “Thor” Saturday night (my, my Thor is nice on the eyes!) and I go to bed around midnight.  This should not have been part of the plan but I do enjoy movie nights with my man.  Set the alarm for 6:30am – Studmuffin shakes his head at me.  He’s used to my stupid, grand ideas though so stays mum (one skill that may be contributing to our 12 year bliss).  I’m able to sleep, fantastic.  Alarm obediently goes off at 6:30am.  Radio lady is talking politics.  Studmuffin turns down the volume but keeps it on.  Weird, but he works in politics so maybe he wants news at 6:30am?  I get up.  Wow, this is going well!  Head downstairs and get to work.  Yeast dissolves slower in the milk than I thought but everything goes smoothly and it smells great.  As I push my most favorite kitchen item (my shiny black KitchenAid stand up mixer) under the cupboard light for a warm spot to sit for 1 ½ to 2 hours, I hear it.  I hear little footsteps.  It’s 7am.  Shoot.  This was not part of the plan.  I stand still as if that is going to will whichever princess is up to go back to bed.  The feet come down the stairs.  NOOOO!!! - I think but stay quiet.  Moody slides into the kitchen in her footies, holding her pillow.  There’s hope, she has her pillow, still looks sleepy.  “Will you snuggle with me?” she asks.  “Baby, you need to go back to bed.  I’m going back to bed.”  “BUT I WANT TO SNUGGLE WITH YOU!” she insists.  Don’t get her excited, don’t get her worked up or your chances of getting her back to sleep are over.  I agree and sit down in our rocking chair in the living room.  She snuggles in.  I am relieved, this could work.  Then…more footsteps.  I’m screwed.  Drama comes down.  She has her blanket.  She lays down on the couch and turns the tv on.  I decide any chance of sleep is going to happen on our huge beanbag type chair that I can’t seem to stay awake on ever.  I pull it out and lay down with Moody.  Of course Drama objects to the favoritism of the situation so I tell her to come sit with us, the thing is big enough for all 3 of us.  She does.  Neither could lie still and after elbows, knees¸ and heads knocking into me, I decide to leave them watching cartoons and try to head upstairs.  It’s about 7:30am at this time.  My prospects of any more sleep are nil but I so desperately just want to close my eyes and get a few more z’s.  I slip into bed – damn, it is cozy.  It’s dark and cool in our room.  I may be able to sleep!  Nope, Moody has followed me.  She gets into our bed and lays up against my back.  Ok, if she is still, this could happen.  She doesn’t.  “Meow!”  Cat enters the scene.  She jumps up on my side table and starts rustling around my make-up containers.  Seriously???  She comes onto the bed.  She steps on my hair, then my side.  I just lay still.  She finds a comfy spot and lies down.  Ok, that’s done, not bad.  Try, try, try to sleep.  Moody gets out of the bed.  She heads to the poorly located playroom next to our bedroom.  She comes back, “Will you get this dress on my Barbie?” She asks.  I play asleep.  Studmuffin tells her he’ll help.  She goes to his side and he takes it.  I feel his arms moving.  I open one eye and look over.  His eyes are shut and his fingers are fumbling with the Barbie.  I’m going to end up putting that dress on.  I continue to play asleep though just to see if a miracle happens and it does.  Moody is happy and returns to the playroom.  Yes!  She’s going to play quietly!  She finds the recorder.  I get up.  Operation Going Back to Bed is a FAIL.   

The following is the donut recipe I used – it came with the cool batter contraption I bought at Bed, Bath & Beyond that drops batter (can be used for donuts, pancakes, waffles).  I’ve always admired them at the Lions’ pancake breakfasts.

Raised Doughnuts (I see they used the longer spelling)

1 ¾ c flour
¼ t salt
2 T sugar
½ oz yeast
1 c lukewarm milk (reserve ¼ c)
1 T melted shortening
2 beaten eggs

½ c powdered sugar
2 t hot milk
¼ t vanilla

Sift flour, sugar and salt, let stand in a warm place.  Mix yeast with ¾ cup milk until it is dissolved.  Beat together melted shortening, yeast and eggs.  Add dry ingredients and beat until batter is smooth.  Let stand in a warm place for 1 ½ to 2 hours until it has risen.  Beat again until mix has a smooth flowing consistency.  Add additional milk if necessary.  Fill donut maker and deep fry at 375 degrees.  Turn to brown each side about 1 minute each side.  Cover with glaze.  Makes about 1 dozen.
The one thing I’ll do differently (other than pick a morning without other plans) is adding the extra milk at the end to get the right consistency.  The recipe says to add the ¼ cup remaining milk as necessary to make the batter a smooth flowing consistency.  Not sure what that meant at first but when I saw how thick the batter was after it was done rising, I saw it needed to be thinner in order to still be a batter.  It was more like a dough.  I added the milk and got a nice smooth consistency but then I let it sit while I prepped the oil.  In that time, it got too doughy again.  Using my cool dropper, I found the batter did not ooze out nicely in order to make good rings.  As you can see, I had varying shapes and girth.

My weird shaped donuts!

 Finished product - they were a hit with my family!

The donuts were fun to make and I do look forward to making them again and using what I’ve learned.  If I’m limited in time, I will try a cake donut next time.

Now I’m getting off this computer and taking a nap!!! 


  1. A nap did not occur. Such is the sleep saga of a parent.

  2. Those donuts look delish! Good job mama!


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