apple cider doughnuts

apple cider doughnuts

It’s going to be 95 degrees here today, but I’m trying to force it to feel like fall anyway. It isn’t just the temperature; there are no trees here to change colors, the air is always dry and crisp, and the only place to buy pumpkins and apples is the grocery store. I often prefer living in the desert, even with months of over 100-degree days in the summer, but every fall, I miss upstate New York.

I especially miss the cider mill I lived near when I was there, which was almost a fall festival of its own, every day. I loved stopping there and choosing one each of six different apple types, which made the best apple pies I’d ever eaten. In the weeks before Halloween, they’d cover most of the lot with pumpkins, not to mention the barrels of squash of every variety. Inside, you could watch them pulp the apples into cider on one side of the building, and on the other, they were frying doughnuts. Brushing fallen sugar off of our shirts after biting into fresh donuts became a yearly tradition.

You can’t buy jugs of fresh cider here or the donuts made with it, but I can make my own doughnuts using pulpy storebought apple juice. By reducing the apple cider/juice until it’s syrupy, you can increase the apple flavor of the doughnuts without increasing the stickiness of the dough. Concentrating apple juice and frying apply donuts smells like fall, and, in a pinch, that will have to epitomize the season in the desert.

One year ago: Burritos

Two years ago: Green Chile Rellenos

Ingredients

  • I especially miss the cider mill I lived near when I was there, which was almost a fall festival of its own, every day. I loved stopping there and choosing one each of six different apple types, which made the best apple pies I’d ever eaten. In the weeks before Halloween, they’d cover most of the lot with pumpkins, not to mention the barrels of squash of every variety. Inside, you could watch them pulp the apples into cider on one side of the building, and on the other, they were frying doughnuts. Brushing fallen sugar off of our shirts after biting into fresh donuts became a yearly tradition.
  • Printer Friendly Recipe
  • Apple Cider Doughnuts (slightly adapted from The Hearth Restaurant via Smitten Kitchen)
  • Makes 18 doughnuts and 18 doughnut holes
  • Despite generally being anti-shortening, I tried it for frying this time. However, I wasn’t happy with it; it started smoking well before it reached proper frying temperature. The doughnuts also seemed to absorb more fat than usual.
  • 1 cup apple cider
  • 3½ cups (16.8 ounces) flour, plus additional for the work surface
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (7 ounces) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • Vegetable oil or shortening for frying
  • Topping (optional): ½ cup granulated sugar + 2 teaspoons cinnamon
Read the whole recipe on The Way the Cookie Crumbles