Doughnuts soft and fluffy like a cloud, filled with most delicious homemade fillings. Crunchy, fluffy, creamy. Following my Grandma’s recipe and proving doughnuts for several hours to develop the right kind of flavor and texture – we could not even expect different than a perfect result.
I took a twist on those traditional Slovak doughnuts usually filled with apricot jam or not filled at all. This time I experimented with Peanut Butter & Chocolate spread and Strawberry cream. Homemade, of course. And it was a fantastic combination.
The whole trick and secret of great doughnuts (same as with any yeast-based dough) is a proper proving and of course good quality of ingredients, especially butter and flour. Long enough proving will ensure a delicate, well-risen dough that is easy to work with, that provides a fluffy and soft crumb and that fries into a brown & crispy crust without absorbing too much oil.
As always, you can use fresh or dry yeasts and as usual, I used a fresh one (fresh yeasts need less time to prove the dough). If you’d be using dry yeasts (not instant) the general rule is to use 2.5 x less of dry to fresh yeasts because dry yeasts are 2.5 x stronger (more concentrated) than the fresh one.
For the filling, I used two easy-to-make fillings. Traditionally, we fill our Slovak doughnuts with jam – Raspberry or Apricot or we eat them unfilled with savory meals like Sour Cabbage Soup. This time I filled my doughnuts with two different kinds of filling, but the list of filing options is endless and you can experiment with options like lemon custard, coffee cream, or ricotta filling. Yum
(for 6 big or ~ 10 small Doughnuts)
250g AP Flour (or any fine flour)
180g Milk, whole
2 Egg Yolks
20g Fresh Yeasts or 8g Dry Yeasts
Pinch of Salt
Chocolate & Peanut Butter Filling
250g Milk, whole
20g Corn Starch
50g Dark Chocolate
2 Tablespoons of Peanut Butter
Strawberry Cream Filling
1 Tablespoon of Strawberry Preserve
60g Sour Cream
Pinch of Cinnamon (optional)
Oil for Frying
- First, we activate the yeasts making so-called pre-ferment. In a small bowl combine together 80g of Milk with 10g of Sugar and heat this mixture up (in a microwave or on the stovetop). Milk should be warm and sugar fully dissolved. Now add your Yeasts (fresh or dry) into milk and if you’re using fresh yeasts, try to dissolve them completely using your fingers. Cover this bowl with a clean towel or plastic wrap and let it sit at room temperature for 20-30 minutes
- After 30 minutes, in a separate big bowl (or bowl of your standing mixer) combine together 250g of Flour, 20g of Sugar, a pinch of Salt, 2 Egg Yolks, 100g of Milk and your yeast mixture that now should be nice and frothy
- Start kneading either with your hand or with a hook attached to your standing mixer on low speed until nicely incorporated. It will take around 5-7 minutes and your dough will be sticky. Now add 50g of Softened Butter chopped on small cubes and keep kneading for another 5 minutes. Butter should get nicely incorporated into the dough and the dough should be still sticky but shiny and elastic. Cover the bowl with the dough with plastic cover and let your dough rest at room temperature for at least 1 hour, ideally up to 2 hours or until double in size
- Dust a work desk with some flour and take your very fluffy dough carefully out of the bowl. Keep adding flour, tablespoon by tablespoon, until you’re able to work with the dough without sticking to your fingers (you shouldn’t add more than ~ 50-70g of flour though). After you incorporate some more flour, divide the dough into an equal 6 (or if you like smaller doughnuts – 10) pieces and shape a nice round from each piece. Cover your doughnuts with a clean towel and let them rest at room temperature for another 30 minutes. Doughnuts will double its’ size
- Heat up oil in a small saucepan on small-medium heat. I prefer using a small saucepan so I don’t need to use too much oil. Test if your oil is hot enough by dropping a small piece of the dough into it – if it simmers, it’s ready. Now slowly, place the doughnut into the hot oil – the side of doughnut that was facing up during the proving should go into the oil first. Fry your doughnut until brown-ish (some 3 minutes), now flip and fry on the other side (another 2 minutes). If your doughnuts are browning too fast, you need to lower the heat. Transfer the doughnut on a napkin to soak excess oil and then sprinkle some sugar on each side of the doughnut. Do the same thing with the rest of doughnuts
- Make a hole on the side of each still warm doughnut using a stick (for example Chinese sticks for sushi) to make some space for the filling. Now insert a piping bag and fill the doughnut with a filling of your choice – be generous with a filling and enjoy your homemade Slovak-style doughnuts
- Bring to boil 200g of Milk and in rest 50g of Milk dissolve a Corn starch and Sugar. Once the milk is boiling, pour in a corn starch mixture while stirring or whisking constantly to avoid lumps. Keep cooking this what we call pudding or custard for a minute to thicken it up. If needed, add more corn starch dissolved in a little bit of milk – you want to get a thick custard. Divide this hot custard into two parts. Add 50g of Dark Chocolate into one part and keep stirring until chocolate melts completely. Add 2 tablespoons of Peanut Butter and mix roughly (chunks of peanut butter in your chocolate filling taste delicious). Let both creams cool down completely (first at room temperature, later transfer into the fridge)
- After white cream (one without the chocolate added) cooled down completely, add one tablespoon of Strawberry Jam and 60g of Sour Cream and mix it all together until well incorporated (do not blend)
- Transfer your well-chilled creams into a piping bag and pipe generous amount into individual doughnuts