Doughnuts with sour apple jam and goat milk caramel

By James Ramsden •

Doughnuts have caused quite a fuss recently, with hybrid versions of the delicacy popping up all over the place.  James shares a fun project recipe for an apple filled doughnut served with a delicious goat milk caramel.

Everyone’s got their knickers in a twist about doughnuts at the moment. First it was the cronut, that now-fabled union of the croissant and the doughnut. Its shrewd inventor, unlike so many of those before him, thought to trademark the innovation, making himself a bob or two in the process.
Bea Vo wasn’t so aggressively self-serving. For several years her tea shop, Bea’s of Bloomsbury, had been serving the duffin – a cross between a doughnut and a muffin, as you probably gathered – when Starbucks announced its ‘very own’ version, with exactly the same name. Hmm.
The controversy lay not in the idea – which Vo happily concedes wasn’t hers in the first place – but in the fact that Starbucks used the name, which a quick Google will show is and has been associated with Bea’s for some time, and in the fact that, just like Vo, they use buttermilk and nutmeg. Fishy, eh?
Anyway, this version is, as far as I can tell, and broadly speaking, my own. I say that. Goat milk caramel is a well-established Mexican number, and the doughnut recipe is based on this one, but I’m going to stick my neck out here and say the sour apple filling is all mine. This was for Bonfire Night, see, and I wanted a toffee apple vibe without having to make toffee apples.
This is a project recipe, not a quickie, but is fun and not too demanding. Do it in advance and reheat, if you like.

Doughnuts with sour apple jam and goat milk caramel

Makes 12


For the doughnut
100ml milk
50g unsalted butter
200g strong white bread flour
7g fast action yeast
4 tbsp caster sugar
Pinch of salt
1 egg, beaten
2 litres vegetable oil
½ tsp cinnamon
For the filling
1 Bramley apple, peeled, cored, roughly chopped
2 tbsp caster sugar
2 tbsp brandy (optional)
For the caramel (optional)
1 litre goat milk
125g caster sugar
¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda, dissolved in 1 tbsp water

To make the doughnuts: Put the milk and butter in a small pan and gently warm to melt the butter. Mix the flour, yeast, half the sugar, and salt together. Make a well in the centre and add the warm buttery milk and the beaten egg. Bring together, then knead for 8-10 minutes on a lightly floured surface.

Transfer to a clean bowl, cover with clingfilm, and leave to rise in a warm place for an hour, or until doubled in size.
Meanwhile, make the apple sauce by putting the cored apple, sugar and brandy in a pan (if not using brandy, use water), cover and simmer over a gentle heat until the apple is collapsing. Beat until smooth.
For the caramel: put the milk and sugar in a large-ish pan over a good heat and stir to dissolve the sugar completely. When it comes to a boil, take off the heat and add the bicarb, stirring to stop it fizzing over. Return to a medium heat and simmer, stirring regularly, until thick and caramelly. This will take about an hour. Sorry.
By this point your dough will be looking perky. Turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 12 pieces. Shape these into balls, then put on a lightly greased baking tray. Clingfilm again, and leave in a warm place for another 45 minutes. Nearly there…

Heat the oil in a large pan to about 170C. In batches of 4, drop in the doughnuts and fry for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden. Dry on kitchen paper.

Mix the rest of the caster sugar with the cinnamon and roll the doughnuts around in it.
Fill a piping bag with the apple sauce and pump a good squirt into the doughnuts.
You can leave all this to cool and reheat later, or serve immediately with the goat milk caramel. Either way, it’s better warm. Enjoy. 

Inspired?  For more doughnut recipes visit Great British Chefs collection.



James Ramsden

James Ramsden is a 27-year-old food writer and broadcaster. He has written about food and cookery for the Guardian, the Times, the FT, delicious., Sainsbury's Magazine, London Evening Standard and many others, and presents the Lad that Lunches on BBC Radio 1. His supper club, the Secret Larder, is one of the most popular in London and was described by one journalist as "harder to get into than the Ivy."

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