When I had my Hexbugs party on Sunday, I needed to come up with some fun snacks. I brainstormed based on some of the ideas provided to me, but I wanted to do finger foods that I knew little picky eaters would enjoy. I made my grocery list on Saturday when I was at a special breakfast with Mister Man. As I sat facing the donut case – filled with all sorts of treats – inspiration struck.
I wanted to make something that was reminiscent of bugs, and I had almost forgotten about my little pumpkin donuts that I make. I haven’t made them in years, but they’re so easy and so yummy, I’m not sure why. My husband has already suggested that I make more and just start selling them – and that’s not a suggestion he typically makes after enjoying what I make.
Even better? After frying them, my friends who came over were surprised, as there was no greasy smell in my house. I’m not sure if that’s because I was sure to keep the oil from getting too hot or if it was because I was using new oil, but yay to no icky smells in my house from cooking.
3 T butter, room temperature
1 c sugar
2 egg yolks
1/2 c plain yogurt
1 c pumpkin puree (NOT pumpkin pie filling!)
1 t vanilla
1/2 t baking soda
4 t baking powder
1 t salt
1 t Cinnamon
1/4 t ground cloves
1/2 t nutmeg
3 1/2 c flour
1 c sugar
4 t cinnamon (in addition to 1 t used above)
Heat two inches of oil in a large pan (I love cast iron as it doesn’t vary the temperature as greatly). You want it between 365 and 375 degrees. In a separate small bowl, combine the 1 c sugar with 4 t cinnamon and mix well. This will be your dipping mixture once your donuts are cooked.
Cream the butter and sugar until lightened and the mixture comes back together. Add the eggs (and yolks), yogurt, vanilla, and pumpkin puree. Mix until well combined. Add the baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon (1 t only!), cloves, nutmeg, and flour. Mix until just combined. It will still be sticky.
On a well-floured surface, begin dollops of dough into 1/2 inch round snakes. Use a knife or bench scraper to cut off small bits of dough. Add the bits of dough to the oil a few at a time. Let them cook on one side for twenty to thirty seconds, then flip them over using a spider or a chopstick. Cook for another twenty to thirty seconds on the other side, then drain on a plate lined with paper towels.
Once the donuts have cooled a bit, roll them in the cinnamon sugar mixture until nicely coated. They taste best when freshly made and still warm. It’s possible that I ate these (and almost just about only these) for lunch and dinner on Sunday. This makes a ton of donuts, so make sure you have a crowd coming to enjoy them. I have also frozen them with decent luck – I heat them in the oven at 200 degrees briefly to rewarm them.