Rose Rausch's Austrian Doughnuts

Rose Rausch's Austrian Doughnuts

Some tips on keeping Rose's Austrian Doughnuts heavenly:

• Don't rush the rising. The doughnut should be light to the touch.

• If you lift doughnuts from the cookie sheet into the fat with a spatula, the doughnut will keep its shape better.

• The fat must be hot before frying the doughnut. Drop in a doughnut hole - if it sizzles, the oil is ready.

• A doughnut rod is handy for turning the rolls in the hot oil. You can make a rod by tapering the end of a wooden dowel.

• A light doughnut will have a ring of white around its middle. It will float atop the oil. If it drops to the bottom because it didn't rise enough or the fat wasn't hot enough, you've created a sinker.

• If doughnuts aren't to be eaten that day, they should be wrapped in airtight bags and frozen. If you are holding them over until the morning, they can be freshened by microwaving for 20 or 30 seconds, then re-sugared.

- Suzanne Martinson, Post-Gazette

  • 1/2 cup lukewarm water

  • 2 teaspoons sugar

  • 2 tablespoons yeast

  • 1 3/4 cups lukewarm milk

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened

  • 4 large eggs

  • Approximately 7 cups flour

Mix water, 2 teaspoons sugar and yeast (2 packets of dry yeast) and set aside until mixture foams.

Beat together milk, sugar, salt, butter and eggs. Add yeast mixture; mix. Add flour, 1 cup at a time; with mixer's dough hook, beat 2 minutes on low, then 7 minutes at medium, or until dough comes clean from side of bowl. (If you don't have a dough hook, dough can be mixed with a regular mixer or by hand. In our recipe test, we added about another 1?2 cup of flour to make the right consistency.)

Grease large bowl with butter and shape dough into ball, turning dough until coated. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight to let rise. (Dough can be kept in refrigerator up to a week.) Dough will more than double in size.

The next day, split dough into two pieces and knead each piece about 100 times to warm it. (Ours was quite sticky and it required additional flour to work it.) Good dough will appear blistered when it has been sufficiently worked.

Roll dough to 1/4-inch thick (ours was a little thicker) and cut with a large doughnut cutter, water glass, drinking cup or small bowl. The class used a 5-inch bowl as a pattern to cut around and a gallon jug lid for hole in doughnut. (The recipe works for regular size doughnut cutters, too.) Let dough rise. It should feel light to touch and be about an inch thick. (At home, our dough doubled in about an hour.)

Heat fresh vegetable oil in heavy frying pan - oil should be about 2 inches deep. (We used a nonstick electic frypan.) It will take 20 minutes to a half-hour to heat oil; flame should be medium to low. To check for proper temperature: drop a doughnut hole into oil. If it bubbles and sizzles, oil is ready. If not, continue heating.

Fry doughnuts until lightly golden (about 11?2 minutes on each side.) Flip over. A doughnut rod is a nice tool for turning; use slotted spoon to handle doughnut holes. (Note: Leftover dough can be shaped into pretzels and fried.)

Drain doughnuts on paper towels. After they've cooled, put sugar in bowl, roll doughnuts in it. (If they are too hot, sugar melts.)

Makes 2 to 3 dozen doughnuts, depending on size.

- Rose Rausch


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