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I think I have shared with you that I totally spoil my kids on their birthdays…when it comes to food that is. A few days ago my oldest daughter turned in her menu. Here it is:

Breakfast: home made doughnuts
Lunch: YesterDog (local dive that has crazy good chili dogs)
Dinner: Penne Alla Betsy (Pioneer Woman recipe)
Birthday Cake: Triple Chocolate Bundt Cake (will share this recipe someday….hopefully soon)
I thought not bad, I can do this. Only thing is I have never made homemade doughnuts. My mom used to make them all the time. I sat and watched and devoured, but I never actually have done it myself. So I dug out my moms doughnut recipe which is called New England Doughnuts. Why New England? Not sure…cause I am pretty sure non of us ever lived in New England. I think I am just going to call them Doughnuts. Or I could call them Fat Balls, that’s what the local bakery calls my favorite doughnut in their display. I always hate saying”two fat balls please”. But I do it anyway……
You will need these ingredients to make zee doughnuts!

1/4 cup Crisco
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup mashed potatoes (no salt or butter added)
4 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 cup buttermilk or sour milk
approximately 4 cups of grease for frying (Crisco melted or vegetable oil)
You will need to start by boiling some potatoes. Yes I said potatoes. This is the hidden, secret ingredient. It’s fabulous I promise. It cuts down on the fat in the dough, making these doughnuts low-cal. Not really, but I like to think that way. You will need one cup of mashed potatoes, no salt or butter added.

Blend the Crisco, sugar, salt, and eggs together well or very good.

I hate to tell you this….you are going to have to haul out your sifter and sift all the dry ingredients together……if you don’t have one, well….umm then just forget I said anything about sifting.

Plop in the mashed taters.

Blend this together with your mixer for 3-5 minutes. Pick out any pesky lumps of potato that refuses to be squished into this lovely dough.

Alternate adding the sifted ingredients and the buttermilk to the sugar mixture. The dough will be very sticky…that’s OK, it will all be glorious…I promise. Just flour your counter…with lots of flour at least 3/4 of a cup.

There it is the dough ball. PLOP! Yup plop-her right on down on the bed of flour. Get your hands all floury and then pat it down into a round…..like so….

about a 1/2 inch thick, more or less.

Now you want to prepare your toppings. I got all crazy and did four. Cinnamon Sugar, Powdered Sugar, Traditional Glaze, and Chocolate Glaze. Printable Glaze Recipes here.

You don’t have to do all this. The Powdered Sugar were the simplest and they were the favorite…well next to the chocolate…I cannot tell a lie. I was trying to make it simple for you.

Now get your oil hot. 375 degrees. Or you can just to the dough ball test=take a pinch of dough plop it in there if it fizzles and floats to the top you are ready to fry your doughnuts, if it does nothing and sinks to the bottom…well then my friend you need to turn up the heat or wait a few more minutes and try the dough ball trick again.

I don’t have a doughnut cutter thing-a-ma-jig. I just have these biscuit cutters, I ended up using the one to the far right. It made the cutest little doughnuts EVER!

Here they are all waiting to get fried….see I tried to make a traditional doughnut up there on the top…but, it was lame.

There they are zee leetle ballz of dough floating around in zee hot greze. I don’t know why I am talking with zee French accent…it just seems like a goood sing to du.

Give the doughnuts a flip. You can flip them a couple times. Back and forth.
Until they are golden brown and have cooked for at least 3 minutes.

There is the set up. Pan with lots of paper towel for draining. Toppings in the background. then the rack set up for the finished doughnuts. Let the doughnuts drain for a minute, roll them around a bit to get all the access grease off.

Then dip and roll and dunk and smear all the good stuff on them.

WOW, if I may brag……I don’t think anyone would ever have known that this was my first doughnut making experience. The only big flub was the last 8 doughnuts I was not patient enough and they were not done on the inside…bummer.

There is the HAPPY Birthday girl. That smile makes this mess worth it 100x over!

Thats just part of the mess….the stove top was beyond photographing.

There is the inside. Perfectly, tender and cakey. Very moist! They were just as I remembered as a kid. I was worried they wouldn’t be. I hate that when you have this memory of something and then you go there or you make it and eat it and it’s not at all like you remembered. Not so with these lil pillows of perfection. Delicious…if I may say so myself.


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  1. My grandmother always made doughnuts when it snowed back in MD, but I've never tried and she didn't seem to use a recipe. Now that I live in TX, I'll have to come up with a new tradition. Maybe, doughnuts every time a hurricane blows by:)

  2. I'm too lazy to make those Sheil! Maybe you can make them for me on my Birthday! : ) Happy Birthday Ains-hope you had a great day!!

  3. My mom and I were drooling over your doughnut photos this morning. I think we might make them sometime. ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. likin' the french accent. Felt like I was wathing a cooking show. Potatoes…. who knew! You are a great mom! You make birthdays fun. Did I tell you mine is coming up?? ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Um…I think I may have to make an excuse to make those this weekend. Maybe a "happy its-not-finally-100-degrees-outside!" celebration?

  6. Looks yummy and not-as-hard-as-I-thought!! I don't have a sifter but I do have a mesh sieve that I use as a colander/sifter. Thanks for sharing!!