Wednesday, June 22, 2016

A Send Off and Kid Approved Baked Donuts!

A faculty member invited me along with another professor over to his house for dinner, a couple of Saturdays ago. The dinner was in honor of his advisee who is moving on to a faculty position in August. When I asked what I could bring, he suggested a dessert. Not a problem, except, I was not in a baking mood. I decided I'd hit up Harris Teeter on the way for some Greek fro yo and call it a day.

But something inside me was restless.

As I laid in bed the night before, I remembered that I bought some donut pans from World Market. I'd wanted to make a donut recipe for a while now, and thought this was the perfect excuse to break them in. Donuts it was!

I didn't feeling like buying any extra ingredients which meant that I was going to have to find (or make) a recipe that called for things I already had on hand. Fortunately, I had all the baking staples (eggs, milk, flour, and butter).

Spoiler alert: This might be my favorite healthier baked goods recipe yet (tied with my pumpkin triple chip bars recipe).

These donuts are incredibly simple, perfectly sweet, moist and fluffy, and full of flavor. What's even better is that you're not plagued with tons of leftover goodies. The recipe makes 8 nice sized donuts. It's the perfect amount and you can easily scale it up if you want to make more.

Baked maple cinnamon donuts

1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon of sea salt
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons of unsalted butter (melted and cooled)
1 large egg (room temp)
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk (bring to room temp; I used the So Delicious brand)
1/4 cup cinnamon maple syrup*
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1 teaspoon of maple extract (found at Target)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray donut tin with nonstick cooking spray
In a medium sized bowl combine the flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and sea salt.
In a separate bowl mix the egg, brown sugar, butter, milk, maple syrup, and extracts.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.
Pour the batter into a large ziploc bag and cut the tip. In a circular motion pipe the batter into the donut pan and fill about 3/4 way.

Put in the oven and bake for about 9 minutes.
Baked maple cinnamon donuts
Let them cool in the tin for 2 minutes before placing them on a wire rack. These taste amazing straight out of the oven. I'd say give them maybe 5 minutes to cool from the time you take them out of the oven and have at it!

*I found this at TJ Maxx but it you can't find it don't fret. 100% pure maple syrup will work perfectly fine.

Why should you make these?
Because I said so! Just kidding:) But seriously, don't you trust me??
These donuts are baked (not fried), use white whole wheat flour, are delicious, and fluffy.

If that's not enough, here's the real endorsement:
When I've baked healthier treats in the past, they've always been for adults. I've found that most adults have at least a tinge of political correctness. Even if they don't like something they'll still be nice about it. This time, the faculty member's son would be eating these and kids don't hold back. If they don't like something you'll see it written all over their face, they may outright tell you, or most horrifying, they'll spit it out.

When he first saw the donuts he got pretty excited and I got pretty nervous lol. I didn't know if these better for you donuts could live up to the high, sugary expectations of an 11-year old boy. As we were sitting at the table talking after dinner, he made a declaration that it should be time for dessert and his parents laughed and agreed.

He headed straight for my donuts, and my heart started pounding.

He unwrapped the plate, picked one up, and took a bite. There I am holding my breath looking for any sign of emotion. It felt like an eternity!!! After he finished his first bite, he said he loved it. I let out a substantial exhale.

Bonus: Someone else brought a chocolate cake with chocolate icing from Harris Teeter which he turned down (what?!) in lieu of seconds of my donuts.

If that's not an endorsement, I don't know what is.

So there you have it. My first foray into donut making was a huge success.
I can't wait to give it another go.

Hope your humpday has been happy!
If not, just make these and it will be:)

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