One perk of being a food blogger is the occasional freebie. When I was asked to check out a Martha Stewart enameled cast iron pot, I was all over it. The email came at the perfect time. I’d been dreaming about making doughnuts at home, but didn’t have the right pot for the job.
I got the smallest size: a 3 quart round casserole (in orange) and it worked great. The pots go all the way up to 8 quarts, but for doughnuts, the smaller size worked best because it was big enough to fry a few at a time, and you don’t need as much oil as you would with a larger pot.
When it comes to making yeast doughnuts, you’ve got a few choices: make them from scratch, using a recipe like this one that takes 2 and a half hours, or buy a package of buttermilk biscuits from the grocery store, pop them in the oil, and have fresh doughnuts in about two minutes.
I think it’s already obvious which method I tried.
I found cans of Pillsbury buttermilk biscuits for 2 for $1 at Grocery Outlet. Each can had 5 small biscuits in it, which I ripped in half and formed into balls. You can also get a round cookie cutter and punch out the center, but come on, it was Saturday morning and I hadn’t even had my coffee yet.
Then, heat some vegetable oil in the pot over medium heat, until it reaches just over 300 degrees F. Go over that temperature and you risk discoloring the pan, and burning your doughnuts. Not good. I’ve read that using a non-stick pot isn’t the best choice for deep-frying because high temperatures can damage the coating, so an enameled pan like this one is a good choice. Just make sure you take a close look at the enclosed instructions; these pots are a little more delicate than most.
Fry the doughnuts for about 1 minute on each side, using chopsticks or tongs to gently flip them over.
When they’re cooked, you’ve got a few options. I coated some of the doughnuts in white sugar and cinnamon (by rolling them around in bowl with about 1/3 cup of sugar and a tsp of cinnamon). You can also whip up a quick glaze, using these recipes from Serious Eats. I tried the chocolate version, which was tasty, but it worked better as a dip. You’re going to want to eat these doughnuts right away, because they’re at their peak when they’re still hot. Once they cool, the texture changes and they taste too oily.
Trust me, this will not be a problem.