Tuesday, May 1, 2007

May Day: Raspberry Doughnuts & Mead

vadelmamunkit & sima / hallonmunkar & mjöd

Raspberry Doughnuts & Mead

There are two kinds of fried sweet goods traditional for May Day over here, doughnuts and May Day fritters (tippaleivät/struvor), which Americans at least would recognize as funnel cakes. The fritters are really more authentic, but as I don't have an army to feed and happen to prefer doughnuts, the choice had to be made.


This was my first time making jam-filled doughnuts, so some research had to be done into how to accomplish this miracle of haute cuisine. In the end, it turned out to be surprisingly simple.


As for the mead, every year I astound myself by managing to not blow up bottles or wind up with a flat sugar syrup instead of this wonderfully refreshing fizzy delight. I wouldn't call this foolproof, because I've seen the former happen (my mother is still traumatized fifteen years after the fact). I do believe the recipe comes from the side of the bag of brown sugar, except I use more lemons.

Raspberry Doughnuts & Mead

Raspberry Doughnuts
makes about 35 smallish doughnuts

2 eggs
150 ml sugar
2 tsp salt
1 tbsp ground cardamom
500 ml lukewarm milk
50 g fresh yeast
150 g butter, softened
~1½ l flour

raspberry jam

1-1½ l oil for frying

Beat the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy. Dissolve the yeast in the warm milk and blend with the egg mixture. Blend salt and cardamom with about half of the flour and stir into the liquids. Work in the softened butter, then add the rest of the flour, a little at a time until you have a soft, springy dough. (You may need a bit more flour than specified, but try to use as little as you can as this will make the doughnuts softer.) Cover and let rise for about 40 minutes, until doubled in size.

Divide the dough in two, roll out to a thickness of about a cm (scant ½-inch), and cut out circles with a cookie cutter or glass. Flatten these a bit, dot a teaspoon or so of jam onto half of the dough rounds, then top each with another round and pinch the edges of the two rounds together firmly. With a cookie cutter (or glass), trim off the edges so you have a neat, round jelly-filled disc. Repeat with the other dough-half and then the scraps. Cover with a towel and let rise while you heat the oil.

Fry in hot oil for about a minute and a half on each side, until nicely browned. Drain on paper towels, then toss in a plastic bag with some caster sugar to coat.

The jam inside these is VERY HOT. Let them cool properly before trying to eat.

250 g soft brown sugar
250 g caster sugar
2 large organic lemons
4 l water
1 ml fresh or dry yeast

Dissolve the sugars by bringing them to a boil mixed with about a liter of the water. Add the rest of the water to the sugar mixture together with the juice and peel from the lemons (large strips are easier to deal with later on). Wait for the liquid to cool to lukewarm, then sprinkle on the yeast and stir. Let stand at room temperature for about 24 hours, stirring occasionally, then pour (strained through cheesecloth) into clean bottles with tight-fitting caps. Before closing the bottles, drop a few raisins in each and sprinkle on about a tsp of sugar. Let stand at room temperature for about 3 days or in the fridge for 5 (safer). Serve cold.


Astrid said...

Beautiful post, consistent with your practice of covering original subjects with esthetic photos and detailed recipes. Just a question: any tips on avoiding exploding bottles? That sounds a bit scary!

Helene said...

I was just thinking about making doughnuts! Great post, and beautiful shot!

Brilynn said...

Those jam doughnuts are bery impressive! I've thought many times of doing it but haven't gotten around to it yet.

joey said...

This sounds like one of my favorite snacks from the Netherlands - Oliebollen! :) I love fried dough things :) I will have to try them filled once...

Eva said...

I love jam-filled doughnuts! Unfortunately, since I haven't got my mum's deep-fryer and special pastry-bag-nozzle at my disposal anymore, I haven't had the guts to try it again. Very sad, indeed...

deinin said...

Astrid, thanks! I think it's just a question of making sure you put just as little yeast in as it says. And if you keep the bottles in the fridge, they'll "brew" more slowly so the pressure won't build up in the same way.

Helene, thanks! I only make doughnuts once a year, usually, although this year I did reserve the oil in case I want to fry some other sweets later.

Brilynn, thanks! I always thought it'd be really tricky, but it worked like a charm.

Joey, yes, I think it's pretty much the same thing.

Eva, I don't have either of those things, and I've never managed to injure anyone or -thing while making it. Go for it!

Freya and Paul said...

The photos are beautiful! I could bite into one of those doughnuts right now!

ylimuuli said...

Sinut on haastettu:

1) Osallistu Toukokuun ruokahaasteeseen osoitteessa: http://monkeyfood.net/toukokuun-ruokahaaste/

2) Haasta kisaan ainakin yksi bloggaaja, jonka haluat mukaan kokkaamaan.

Kauan eläköön bloggaus, kokkaus ja reilu kilpailu!

Meeta said...

Hi! I am new to your blog and am pretty hooked already! These donuts sound really great. In Germany they are sold in the bakeries quite commonly but I think there is nothing like making a batch of these yourself - so satisfying in every way.

tara said...

My Father-in-Law was just asking if I had a good recipe for doughnuts. I do believe I can now say "yes!" These look simply gorgeous.

JennDZ said...

Wow, those donuts look beautiful! Nice photography!

Anonymous said...

My grandmother used to make this kind of donuts with sugar on them.. and buttercream inside.

Det är alltid så fina bilder här, är du fotograf? *bara nyfiken*


deinin said...

Freya (and Paul) they were so great. The problem is, of course, that making them is a bit of a hassle and so you wind up with a huge batch once a year instead of four decent-sized ones spread out.

Ylimuuli - kovasti mietitään haastevastausta!

Meeta, they're very common here, too, but not nearly as good as freshly home-made (they also tend to be pretty gigantic). And welcome!

Tara, I hope you get a chance to try them!

JennDZ - thanks!

Ullis - oooh, buttercream. I never even thought of that. I bet they were fabulous. (Och nej, jag har inte det minsta utbildning i fotografväg. Innan jag började matblogga fotade jag mest mina katter. Nu har jag blivit så bortskämd av stillastående motiv att kattbilderna inte blir alls lika bra längre...)

SteamyKitchen said...

What a very cool technique using the glass to shape the donut. May I order a half dozen with a cup of coffee please?! :-)

deinin said...

Steamykitchen - hah! It was mostly a question of not having cookie cutters in a suitable size, but it did work very smoothly.

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