Hot Cross Doughnuts
TOTAL TIME: 4 HOURS
MAKES: 20 MINI DOUGHNUTS
80 mL warm water
3.5 g dried yeast
250 g bread flour, plus extra for dusting
75 g caster sugar, divided
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
¼ tsp mixed spice
¼ tsp cinnamon
50 g butter, chilled and cubed
1 large egg, lightly beaten
20 g plain flour
2 drops almond essence
20 mL water
1 L sunflower oil
Add warm water to a jug and then add the yeast. Stir and set aside for approximately 5 minutes, until the mixture is frothy
Sift flour into a large bowl. Add 25g caster sugar, salt, nutmeg, mixed spice and cinnamon and stir to combine. Add butter and use your fingers to rub the butter into the flour mix until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the egg and the yeast with a wooden spoon until the mixture comes together.
Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead the dough for approximately 10 minutes or until the dough is smooth on the outside and springs back when pressed.
Place dough in a lightly greased bowl and cover with a piece of oiled plastic wrap.
Set aside to prove in a warm spot, until it has doubled in size, approximately 1 to 2 hours.
Knead the dough again for 2 minutes on a floured surface and then divide the dough into 20 equally sized pieces. Shape each piece into a smooth ball. Divide balls between 2 lightly greased baking trays, leaving room for them to expand. Cover with oiled plastic wrap and set aside to prove in a warm spot until they have doubled in size.
Mix together a paste of 20 g plain flour, almond essence and 20 mL water. Place this paste into a piping bag fitted with a plain nozzle (if you don’t have a piping bag snip use a freezer bag, snipping bthe corner off). Pipe a cross onto each doughnut.
Put sunflower oil into a large, deep saucepan and using a kitchen thermometer heat oil to 160C. Use a slotted spoon to lower doughnuts into the hot oil. You will need to work in batches so that you don’t overcrowd the pan. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes until the doughnuts are golden brown. Remove from oil and drain on paper towel for a minute before rolling in the remaining sugar.