Apple cider is almost as iconic as colored leaves. It shouts cheerfully “Fall is here! Fall is here!” As families flock to pick apples, orchards often offer the ever-popular treat: apple cider flavored donuts.
The common recipe is easy to spruce up and make real food friendly at home, and of course, it's best enjoyed with a warm beverage for dunking!
Soaked Apple Cider Donuts
- 3-1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour (or spelt flour)
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- 3/4 cup Sucanant or Rapadura
- 1 cup butter
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1-1/2 cups apple cider, preferably unpasteurized OR 2/3 cup boiled apple cider (available at Whole Foods)
- cinnamon sugar (1 cup Sucanant or Rapadura mixed with 2 tablespoons cinnamon)
Adapted from Yankee Magazine.
Boil the 1-1/2 cups apple cider down to approximately 2/3 cup on the stove. This should take around 25 to 30 minutes. In a pinch, you can just use 2/3 of a cup of regular apple cider, but the donuts will not be nearly as tangy. Combine the flour, buttermilk, and boiled apple cider. Cover and let soak overnight. In the morning, add the rest of the ingredients in order. It may take a bit of effort to get the right consistency after soaking. Add a tablespoon at a time of milk or water if needed to achieve a batter that isn’t too thick. I typically add 2 more tablespoons of liquid.
Oil and flour a donut pan and fill 2/3 of the way full with batter. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 to 18 minutes until a knife comes out clean. This my preferred way.
A note about the donut pan: I realize donut pans are not ideal (they are usually nonstick), but I prefer my donuts baked because they aren’t quite as heavy. This is only a once-in-a-while treat, so I am fine with this. If you want a more traditional approach, heat coconut oil and fry donuts, flipping when the first side is brown.
To make muffins instead of donuts, grease pan or use liners. Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 22 to 25 minutes. These don’t hold up as well and don't have the same texture as donuts. But they turn out all right!
When donuts/muffins are still warm from baking, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.
Have you made or had apple cider donuts before? What's your favorite treat for picking apples?
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