Doughnuts. Is there anything they can't do? ~ Homer Simpson
I read an article yesterday on the Top 10 Worst Foods for You. Number one was Soft Drink, which I hmm'ed and nodded at with gravitas, quietly smug that I don't drink fizzy drinks. But then I got to number two which was pork crackling which made me decidedly less smug and then came number three: Doughnuts by which point I found myself huffing with indignation. Have they considered Deliciousness and Good-For-The-Soul-ness I argued to my screen??
Doughnuts have got to be one of my many food Archilles heels. A Boston Creme takes me to my happy place. I once signed up for the local gym and rewarded myself after every session with half a dozen Dunkin' Donuts. Needless to say I gained rather than lost any weight.
Despite my love of doughnuts, I've never tried making them before. All that waiting for the yeast to rise and then deep frying just seemed like too much of an effort when you can pop up to the mall for a doughnutty fix. I was also convinced that the so called Baked Cake Doughnuts could only be a poor substitute for the almighty yeast/fried variety.
So how did I come to make these Cinnamon Sugar Mini Doughnut Muffins?
I actually found the recipe as "Baked Mini Churro Bites" which I made for my tutorial group at uni since I was having a hankering for churros, they were quick and easy, and used ingredients I already had in the pantry.
To be honest, I wasn't thrilled by the first batch. They were more doughnut muffins rather than churro-esque and I felt they weren't quite sweet enough, but they did however get rave reviews from fellow students.
I've since made them again with some slight adjustments to the recipe and I'm happy to say I've been converted. They are so easy to pop in your mouth and that cinnamony sugary hit is as delicious as it is comforting.
The best thing about them is how easy it is to whip up a batch but things can get a little messy when you are doing the coating so make sure you have your sleeves rolled up! Having said that, it's a treat getting to lick the sugary buttery goodness off your fingers when it's all done. Mmmmmmm doughnuts.
Cinnamon Sugar Mini Doughnut Muffins
adapted from a recipe by Sweet Tooth
Makes around 30 mini doughnut muffins
1 1/2 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp grated nutmeg
1/4 cup caster sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
80 g unsalted butter, softened
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 large egg
1/2 cup milk
Cinnamon sugar coating
60 g unsalted butter
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Extra: 1/2 tsp cinnamon + 1 Tbsp caster sugar
1. Preheat the oven to 180oC. Grease two 24 cup mini muffin trays (only need 6-8 cups from the second tray) really well with melted butter.
2. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg and set aside.
3. In a separate bowl, cream butter and sugar until fluffy and light. This might take up to 2 minutes. Add vanilla and the egg and beat until really fluffy (another 2 minutes).
4. Add in 1/3 of the flour mixture and beat on low until just combined. Then add 1/2 the milk, beat on low till combined. Then the second 1/3 of flour, mix, then rest of milk, mix, and finishing off with the rest of the flour.
5. Scoop heaped teaspoonfuls onto your prepared mini muffin trays. Bake at 180oC for 14-16 minutes (use a toothpick to check if it is done - should come out clean with poked in the middle.
6. While you are waiting for the doughnuts to bake, melt the butter in a little bowl. In a separate little bowl or plate mix cinnamon and sugar together.
7. As soon as the mini doughnuts are done, tip them out on to a cooling rack and while they are still hot, brush/dip them in the melted butter and then coat in cinnamon sugar and place back on the rack to cool. I liked sprinkling a little extra cinnamon and sugar on top once they were done to up the cinnamoniness. These are great warm or can keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days.