Baked Pumpkin Spice Donuts
For weeks before Chanukah, the stalls in Israel’s markets are stacked with fried sufganiyot (donuts) glistening with sugar and dripping with red jelly. I try to restrain myself, but they’re too good! To bring some Thanksgiving flavors into my life here in Israel, I made a baked sufganiyot that invite Thanksgiving nostalgia with a Chanukah treat. Sorry, Israelis, I know that baking donuts is a total insult, but it’s the only way I’ll be able to stomach Chanukah and Thanksgiving indulgences all in the same week!
- 1 packet active dry yeast (2¼ teaspoons)
- 1 1/3 cup slightly warm (not hot) milk
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup pumpkin puree
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 5 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ginger powder or 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- ½ teaspoon allspice
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Oil for greasing bowl
- Stir yeast into 1/3 cup of warm milk. Mix the remaining cup of milk with butter, sugar, pumpkin puree and eggs and then add to yeast mixture. In an electric mixer bowl, whisk flour, spices and salt. Mix in the wet ingredients. Beat the dough with an electric mixer dough hook for 3 to 7 minutes or knead by hand for about 10 minutes. If the dough is too sticky, add more flour.
- Once the dough is formed, it shouldn’t be too sticky and should pull away from your hands easily. Knead it a few times and place it an oiled bowl. Cover with a clean dishtowel and let rise in a warm place for an hour (similar to the process of making challah).
- When the dough has grown, hit it down and roll it into a ½-inch thick sheet on a floured countertop. Use a doughnut cutter if you have one. If not, use a large glass or 3-inch round cookie cutter (I used a wide mouth mug) to cut the dough into circles. Use a much smaller glass or cookie cutter to cut a hole in the middle of the circles.
- Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper and line up the circles on top with some space inbetween. Cover the dough circles with a cloth and let rise for 45 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake donuts for 8 to 10 minutes until tops are browned. When done, sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon and/or nutmeg, or enjoy plain.