My purchase of a deep fat fryer understandibly initiated an immediate flurry of doughnut making activity. Doughnuts have become quite the in thing recently, and it wouldn’t be Saturday without watching the quite amusing sport that has become the race for a sought after St John Bakery custard one via Twitter; rumour has it they are believed to be stocked in Selfridges any day now (has anyone actually seen one there yet?). I still dream of the plum and custard, and marmalade and custard versions resplendent at Hawksmoor, though they’re even trickier to hunt down within the restraints of every day life. Having my own doughnut making device creates the prospect of piping hot, freshly made, deep fat fried, sugar encrusted sweet dough literally whenever I want (I KNOW!).
Rather pleased with my first attempt and invention of the Negroni doughnut I was keen to make more, and with two batches of dough resting in the fridge, there was no stopping me. In my mind the myriad of ingredients, flavours and filling possibities is endless and I already have a burgeoning list of ideas jotted down in my trusty notebook. Near the top of that list is an easy choice; the rather romantic pairing of cardamom and rose, beautifully aromatic and evocative of warm dusky evenings in some warm and far flung location; sadly my South East location is far from exotic but I can dream can’t I? These dainty bites help with transporting my mind at least and served in little bowls they make an excellent nibble with a few martinis (which also help to transport the mind I find…); I had Millers gin to hand, but a Hendricks martini, infused as it is with cucumber and rose, would be perfect and re-inforce those delicate rose flavours.
I just took a batch of my original dough and kneaded in the cardamom, but you could incorporate the spice earlier on for an even more aromatic effect. On this particular occasion I wanted something small to nibble with drinks but if I were to elaborate and make larger doughnuts I think they’d be truly sensational with a pistachio based filling; either a sort of pistachio paste in smaller ones or a custard in more regular sized doughnuts.
Take one portion of dough or make from scratch using the same recipe taken from Dan Lepard’s book Short and Sweet.
Remove the seeds from 3 or 4 green cardamom pods per quarter original batch of dough. Pound them in a pestle and mortar until you have a powder, then knead into your dough.
Divide your dough into small pieces (I had 6 or 7 I think), roll those into balls and leave on an oiled plate to rest for around 40 minutes.
Heat your oil to 180 degrees and fry until golden, this won’t take long at all so keep an eye on them, knocking them around (carefully) so they are cooked evenly.
Toss them directly into a bowl filled with sugar and crushed dried rose petals.
Serve in bowls scattered with more (not so crushed) rose petals.