Powdered Cake Doughnuts

powdered cake doughnuts | apt 2b baking co
powdered cake doughnuts | apt 2b baking co

I am back in New York after a fun few weeks on the road, catching up on things, including my vegetable consumption that I may have let slip a little bit while I was traveling....but that doesn't mean that I can't talk doughnuts with you today. Specifically, perfectly tender-crumbed, excessively powdered cake doughnuts like these guys.

Doughnuts are one of those treats that really are 1 million times better when they are warm and fresh, and the best way to make that happen is to pull out your biggest pot, a quart of oil, and get to work at home. Most cake doughnuts some together just like cookie dough (this one is even simpler than cookie dough!), and once you get over the fear of frying, they are super easy to make. These doughnuts (by way of  Stella Parks, who you may know as the Brave Tart)  are gloriously powdered, made with the legendary Hostess Donette in mind, and they do not disappoint.

I took most of this batch to a picnic where everyone was happily covered in powdered sugar by the end of the afternoon, and ate a couple hunched over the sink – which is a move I usually reserve for one of summer's perfect peaches, juices dripping down my arm. I highly suggest either :)

I'll be back soon with more summer book event announcements, and lots of rhubarb things as soon as I get some film for my camera. Have a nice holiday weekend, US friends!


makes about 1 dozen doughnuts and holes

very, very slightly adapted from Serious Eats

Stella originally made these as little bitty donettes, like the ones from the convenience store, but I went with more traditional sized doughnuts and holes. Also, she recommends frying in coconut oil for a lot of great reasons, but I couldn’t find refined coconut oil at my local market (and didn’t want to wait to order it online!) so I fried my doughnuts in coconut oil. Visit the original post on Serious Eats for lots more in depth info about this recipe and some troubleshooting tips from Stella!

3 1/2 ounces granulated sugar (1/2 cup/100g)

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 ounce unsalted butter (2 tablespoons/30g), melted

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 large egg yolks

4 ounces plain, unsweetened nonfat Greek yogurt (1/2 cup/110g), at room


6 1/2 ounces low-protein, all-purpose flour (scant 1 1/4 cup/185g)

Refined coconut oil, enough to reach a 2-inch depth; about 32 ounces (1L) in an 8-inch pot (I couldn’t find refined coconut oil, so I used peanut oil)

4 ounces powdered sugar (1 cup/115g)

Whisk the sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl.

In a large bowl, stir the melted butter, vanilla, egg yolks, and yogurt (or sour cream) together. Add the flour mixture and stir to form a soft dough.

Turn the dough out onto a well-floured surface and knead the dough until it is easy to handle, add as much flour as necessary to the dough during this process.

Roll the dough to about 1/2-inch thick and use a pastry brush to brush off excess flour. Use a doughnut cutter to cut as many doughnuts and holes as possible. Gather the scraps and cut another round of doughnuts and holes.

Melt the coconut oil in a microwave then pour into an 8-10-inch stainless steel pot to a depth of at least 2-inches. Heat the oil to 365ºF over medium heat. Line a baking sheet with paper towels and put the powdered sugar in a fine mesh sieve.

Fry the doughnuts, being careful to not crowd the pan, for about 45 seconds on each side or until deep golden and cooked through. Transfer the doughnuts to the prepared baking sheet and sprinkle generously with powdered sugar. Enjoy warm if possible! Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature for about a day.

powdered cake doughnuts | apt 2b baking co

Chocolate-Orange Challah with Saffron from Food with Friends

chocolate-orange challah with saffron | apt 2b baking co
chocolate-orange challah with saffron | apt 2b baking co
chocolate-orange challah with saffron | apt 2b baking co
chocolate-orange challah with saffron | apt 2b baking co
chocolate-orange challah with saffron | apt 2b baking co
chocolate-orange challah with saffron | apt 2b baking co

Gathering over a meal is just about my favorite way to catch up with old friends or get to know new ones so I knew I would love Leela Cyd’s new book Food with Friends before I even opened it. Then, when I did recipes like pistachio rose clouds, socca cakes with labneh and fennel, coconut tapioca pudding (you know I love tapioca!) with roasted necartines and chard empanadas with pistachio cream drew me right in. The recipes and photography in this are inspired by both Leela's life in California and her adventures all over the world - all equally colorful and joyful. Leela's tone is warm and inviting, and the photos are dreamy in a way that makes me want to host as many tea parties, potlucks, and picnics as I can this Spring and Summer. 

I marked so many recipes in this book to try, but I’m on a bit of a bread baking spree lately so for this post I made the chocolate-orange challah with saffron. It is a gorgeous spin on a classic challah - filled with sweet chocolate and orange, tinted with saffron.

Chocolate-Orange Challah with Saffron

makes one 10-inch Challah bread

reprinted with permission from

3/4 cup whole milk

large pinch of saffron threads

1/3 cup olive oil plus more for greasing the bowl

2 1/4 teaspoon (1 envelope) dry yeast

2 large eggs

2 egg yolks

1/3 cup agave nectar

1 teaspoon fine sea salt

2 teaspoons grated orange zest

4 to 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup roughly chopped dark chocolate

flaky sea salt for garnish

pearl sugar for garnish

In a small saucepan, bring the milk almost to a boil. Add the saffron, cover, and remove from the heat. Let the milk steep for about 1 hour. Grease a large bwol with olive oil and set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the steeped milk and yeast. Allow the yeast to bloom for 5 minutes, until it produces a creamy liquid with bubbles on top. Whisk in 1 whole egg, the egg yolks, oil, agave syrup, fine sea salt, and orange zest. Adding 1 cup at a time, mix the flour into the wet mixture until a shaggy dough has started to form. Change to the dough hook and knead the dough on low speed until the dough is a smooth, soft texture, 5 to 7 minutes (or if you’re kneading by hand, work the dough for about 10 minutes). Place the dough in the greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled in size, 1 to 2 hours.

Punch the dough down and divide into 4 equal sections. Spread each portion into a 12-inch long rectangle about 1 inch thick, top with the chocolate shards, and roll each rectangle into a rope.

Shape the challah - (Yossy's note: there are some photos in the book to help weave and shape the challah: here is an online photo tutorial to help) 

Set the shaped dough onto a parchment lined baking sheet, cover it lightly with a tea towel and allow it to rise for 1 hour. Preheat oven to 375ºF. In a small bowl, beat the remaining egg with 1 teaspoon water. Brush the loaf with the egg wash and sprinkle with flaky salt and pearl sugar. Bake the challah for 35 to 40 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool completely on a wire rack, then slice and serve.

Food with Friends is out March 29, check it out! Thanks to Leela and Clarkson Potter for the sneak peek.