This donut recipe with whole wheat flour are a healthier baked version of the classic donuts. Make two types of donuts, chocolate donut with a delicious chocolate glaze and cinnamon donut with a sprinkle of cinnamon, sugar sprinkle.
First warm ½ cup milk and take it in a mixing bowl or pan. Do note that the milk should be warm and not hot.
Then add sugar and instant yeast. Mix very well.
Next add 1 cup of whole wheat flour.
Mix very well with a spoon. Cover the pan with a lid or kitchen towel and allow to leaven for 20 to 30 minutes.
After leavening, you will see that the dough mixture has become stringy and has air pockets in it.
Then add the remaining 1 cup of whole wheat flour, butter, vanilla extract and a pinch of grated nutmeg.
Mix first and then begin to knead the dough. Add ¼ cup more of the milk (milk can be warm or at room temperature). Add milk as required while kneading.
Knead to a smooth, soft and supple dough. The dough should be softer than a roti or naan dough. If dough feels tight then add more milk. Note that when you add more milk, it will look like the dough has become sticky and is covered with milk, but continue to knead and the dough will absorb the remaining milk.
Do note that the dough has to be soft and supple. If the dough is not soft, then the donuts will also not have a soft texture. Overall I have added ¾ cup milk. Depending on the quality of flour, you can add ¾ to 1 cup milk or more if required.
Cover the bowl and keep the dough to leaven for 45 minutes to 1 hour. The dough will double. Warmer temperatures are more conducive for leavening and fermentation.
If using dry active yeast or fresh yeast, then keep for 1:30 minutes to 3 hours. Timing will vary depending on the temperature conditions.
While donut dough is getting leavened, prepare the glaze toppings.
Making Chocolate glaze
In a bowl, take the powdered sugar or icing sugar, cocoa powder, vanilla extract and milk.
Mix very well and keep aside. If the glaze looks very thick, then you can add 1 tablespoon more milk.
Making sugar and cinnamon sprinkle
Take fine or super fine sugar or powdered sugar or icing sugar in a bowl or plate along with the ground cinnamon powder.
Mix very well and set aside.
Rolling, Shaping and Leavening Donuts
Line a tray with parchment paper or butter paper. Alternatively you can grease the tray very well with oil or butter.
Gently and lightly knead the dough once more. Then sprinkle some flour and roll the entire dough to a circle having ½ to ¾ inch width.
Keep and press the donut cutter on the dough. Do this on all the rolled dough.
If you do not have a dough nut cutter, then take a lid and press it on the dough. Then take a small lid and keep in the centre of the cut round dough. Remove the small centre piece and you get the donut shape.
Remove gently and keep the donuts on the lined tray. Also keep the small centre pieces.
Gather the remaining dough and bring it together. Roll and again cut the dough. Make donuts this way with all of the dough
Cover and allow for the second rise for 15 to 20 minutes or until they double in size. With dry active or fresh yeast, keep for 30 minutes to 45 minutes or for more time if needed until the donuts double in size.
Before baking donuts, preheat the oven with both top and bottom heating elements on at 180 degrees celsius. Keep the baking tray in the centre of the oven.
Bake donuts for 15 to 25 minutes. Timing will vary depending on the oven size, design and actual temperature in the oven.
Bake till the tops are golden. Do not over bake as then the texture becomes dry.
Remove the baked donuts with a spatula and place on a wired rack. If some donuts have got baked and some are still not, then remove the ones which are baked and keep on a wired rack. Continue to bake the remaining ones for some more minutes
Let the donuts become warm or cool slightly. Then proceed to the next step of glazing.
Melt 2 tablespoons butter in a steel bowl or a steel plate by keeping it on a low flame on the stove top. Do not touch the plate or bowl as it will be hot.
Place the donuts upside down in the melted butter.
Then place the buttered side in the cinnamon, sugar mixture and gently move the donut on the sugar mixture so that the sugar and cinnamon sticks to the butter. Remove and keep donuts on the wired rack with the sprinkled side facing upwards.
For the chocolate glaze, place the doughnut upside down in the glaze and coat evenly.
Remove and keep the chocolate glazed side upwards on the wired rack.
I also sprinkled some desiccated coconut on a few chocolate donuts. This is an pptional step.
Serve donuts warm or at room temperature. Leftovers can be refrigerated. They will become dense once refrigerated. So while serving, you can warm doughnuts in an oven or microwave oven or let them come to room temperature.
Flour: For a very soft texture use all-purpose flour instead of whole wheat flour to make the donut dough. You could also include an equal mix of whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour. If using all-purpose then add less milk when kneading.
Milk: Make a lighter version by adding water instead of milk. You can also use plant-based milk like almond milk, oats milk or cashew milk.
Butter: Make a vegan donut, by including vegan butter or a neutral tasting oil. Do not use any nut butter like peanut butter or almond butter as the taste and flavor will change.
Cocoa powder: If you do not have cocoa powder, you can use hot chocolate mix or hot cocoa mix. Simply mix the desired quantity of hot or warm water to the hot cocoa mix to get a thick to medium consistency glaze.
Scale: This donut recipe can be scaled to make half a batch and can be doubled too.