Chocolate doughnuts with caramelised white chocolate custard
Rich, delicious and best eaten fresh from the fryer. If you don’t have time to make the caramelised chocolate, simply stir through melted and cooled white chocolate instead.
MAKES 8 PREP 1hr, plus cooling and rising COOK about 1hr 10min
FOR THE DOUGHNUTS
• 175ml whole milk
• 25g unsalted butter
• 250g strong white bread flour
• 50g cocoa powder
• 10g fast-action dried yeast
• 150g caster sugar
• 1 medium egg
• Vegetable oil, to grease and deep-fry
FOR THE FILLING
• 300ml whole milk
• 1tsp vanilla bean paste
• 2 medium egg yolks
• 50g caster sugar
• 35g plain flour
• 2tbsp custard powder
• 175g good-quality white chocolate, finely chopped, see Cook’s tip
1 For the doughnuts, heat the milk and butter in a small pan over low heat to melt the butter. Cool until just warm.
2 In the bowl of a freestanding mixer fitted with a dough hook, mix flour, cocoa powder, yeast, 50g sugar and 1/2tsp fine salt to combine. Add the egg and cooled milk mixture. Knead on low-medium speed for 8-10min, until springy (the dough should be slightly sticky). Cover bowl and leave to rise in a warm place for 1hr, until doubled in size.
3 Meanwhile, make the filling. Heat the milk and vanilla in a pan until just steaming. In a bowl, mix the egg yolks, sugar, flour and custard powder to a thick paste. Gradually whisk in the hot milk. Return to the pan and cook, whisking constantly, over medium-high heat until thick. Transfer to a large bowl, lay clingfilm or baking parchment directly on to the surface and leave to cool.
4 Make the caramelised white chocolate. Preheat oven to 140°C
(120°C fan) mark 1. Scatter white chocolate on to a small, non-stick baking tray. Bake for 50min, removing from oven every 10min and stirring well (this will stop the chocolate catching), until a deep golden-brown colour.
Don’t worry if your chocolate goes lumpy, just keep going until smooth and caramelised. Leave to cool for
5min before stirring it into the filling. Re-cover and chill until needed.
5 Once the dough has risen, grease a large baking sheet. Divide dough into 8 equal pieces, roll into balls and space apart on the greased sheet. Loosely cover and leave to rise again for
30min, until puffed.
6 Fill a large, heavy-based, high-sided pan with oil so that it’s 5cm deep.
Heat oil to 160°C (check using a thermometer). Add 4 doughnuts at a time and cook for 3-4min per side, until puffed. Lift out with a slotted spoon on to kitchen paper, then gently toss in remaining 100g sugar. Cool. Repeat with remaining doughnuts, monitoring oil temperature as you go.
7 Whisk filling to loosen, if needed, then transfer to a piping bag fitted with a 1.5cm nozzle. Using a skewer, poke a hole into the side of each doughnut. Pipe in plenty of filling.
GET AHEAD Make filling up to 1 day ahead. Complete recipe to serve.