My godmother sent me my first doughnut pan all the way from Taiwan last month. It’s been pretty darn near impossible to find the thing locally so you can probably imagine how I felt the moment I opened the package and saw it. I was over the moon! Even though a moment later I realized the pan was way smaller than the normal size, I was more than happy to receive it. It’s so much better than not having a pan at all! (She also sent over a doughnut cutter for yeasted doughnuts but we can talk about that later on.)
I’m not such an avid doughnut-eater but I have wanted for the longest time to make some at home. I have some fascination over trying to figure out why the little suckers seem to draw so much attention. If any of you have ever seen the lines in any JCo branch all over Metro Manila you might understand what I mean. What is it about doughnuts that make people wait for the longest time and exit the store with boxes upon boxes piled up in their arms? Is it a phenomenon seen only in the Philippines? (I don’t recall any lines at all in JCo stores in other Asian countries I visited.) At some point I thought to myself, will making it help me understand this intense love for doughnuts?
There is some strange circular reasoning coming into play here. Bear with me please!
Funny story about my long search for doughnut pans. After months of leaving store after store with head bowed down in failure, I resorted to asking acquaintances living abroad for help. But after my pan arrived, by some ironic twist of chance, I actually chanced upon a Wilton doughnut pan as I was browsing through the Living Well Store in the SM Mall of Asia. This happened several weeks ago but I remember the scene like it was yesterday.
There were exactly two Wilton pans sitting quietly on a shelf and it was my brother Jason who saw them first. Bells of hallelujah started ringing in my head. Deep inside I did a little happy dance. It seems a bit weird and overly dramatic, but do you know that pleasant feeling of overwhelming surprise you get when you have given up the search for something and suddenly it appears quite unexpected before your eyes?
Yep, that’s the one! Life is full of awesome surprises sometimes! 😀
One thing I regret is not buying both pans. As of this writing I have not tried the Wilton pan yet because I actually made these doughnuts way before that fateful visit. However the difference in size of the pans was made more jarring when I got to compare them side by side.
As you can see, the pan from Taiwan is nearly just as tall as an iPhone 5. The doughnuts it produces is somewhere in the middle of a regular-sized one and a mini. I didn’t mind but it does mess a bit with the stated yields in the recipe. Also, having only this small one meant I had to pop out the first batch of doughnuts and quickly clean the pan, then I have to grease it again and refill it just to get the remaining batter into the oven. It does require quite a bit more work! Nonetheless, I don’t want to sound like an ungrateful ingrate. This doughnut pan is special because it came from someone I adore to bits. I was extremely excited about my first doughnut pan that I had to try it out immediately.
Interestingly enough there seems to be more to it than just baking them doughnuts in the pan. Overmixing the batter for cake doughnuts is a sin. There is also a proper way of piping the batter and a proper quantity when filling each empty slot in the pan to attain that perfect plump doughnut shape. I didn’t really think of any of these since… I mean, doughnuts. And cake doughnuts at that! How complicated could they be? Luckily I had the foresight to start out with two of my personal favourite flavours– you know, flavours I would probably still eat in case I mess the recipe up somehow. More luckily still, in this house anything green tea and lemon is usually a safe bet.
My two main problems with my doughnuts involved their texture and their shape. As I mentioned, I had absolutely zero ideas about how to go about piping the batter into the pan. Should I tap the pans on the counter to even out the batter after piping? Which direction should I pipe the batter in? Fortunately one of the recipes did come out well-shaped from the oven, and it was the Green Tea Doughnuts. I was satisfied enough with it to pass on the recipe. Most of the time, legit green tea treats can do no wrong in my eyes.
I absolutely loved the earthy colouring of these doughnuts. Matcha has become one of my favourite ingredients to work with of all time and I was very excited to bake with it again. I just love looking at the colouring of the pastries it creates. I got my matcha powder from the online store Matcha King. Strangely enough my doughnuts came out really dark, but nonetheless they were soft and enjoyable. And they smelled sooo goooood. <3
Matcha makes me bust out the cheesiest of my symbol emoticons…
The matcha flavour goes well with chocolate, specifically white so you can use that as a glaze if you prefer. Since I pretty much hate white chocolate- not going to sugarcoat it ya’ll, just thinking about it makes my throat ache- bittersweet is the way to go!
These doughnuts are best the day they are made, but it was fine after an overnight stay in the fridge until the next day. Warm or cold it doesn’t really matter, though they are a bit denser when cold. Personally I loved eating them freshly glazed, when the chocolate still oozed down the sides.
Green Tea Doughnuts
For the doughnuts
- ¾ cup 95 g cake flour (or make your own - see below)
- 2 Tbsp. 25 g sugar
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 Tbsp. 6 g green tea powder (matcha)
- 1 large egg, beaten
- ⅓ cup 80 ml milk
- 2 Tbsp. 35 g butter, melted
- 1 Tbsp. honey
For the Chocolate Glaze
- ¼ cup semisweet chocolate chips
- Sprinkles of your choice
Make the doughnuts
- 1. Preheat oven to 425°F (220°C). Lightly coat your donut pan with cooking spray.
- 2. Add the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and matcha in a large mixing bowl and whisk to combine.
- 3. Add the beaten egg, milk, melted butter and honey to the mixing bowl, and whisk until incorporated. The batter will be very liquid.
- 4. Fill the doughnut molds about 3/4 full either by scooping the batter into the molds of using a pastry bag with one corner snipped off.
- 5. Bake doughnuts for 8 minutes, or until an skewer inserted into comes out clean and the doughnuts spring back when lightly touched. Let cool in the pan for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack.
Make the chocolate glaze
- 6. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler, or in the microwave by 30 second intervals, mixing between intervals until the chocolate is smooth.
- 7. Dip the cooled doughnuts into the melted chocolate and top with sprinkles of your choice. Doughnuts are best consumed the day they are made.
My Mom kept pestering me about why the doughnuts weren’t fluffy but I told her that only yeasted doughnuts get that texture most of the time. I probably need to try one of those soon. Better yet I need to try and understand cake doughnuts a bit more as well.
Anyway, these doughnuts originally came with a rose-flavoured glaze, but I would find out during this day that “rose hip flavour” absolutely does not equal rose essence. I ended up tossing that very strong-smelling, metal-tasting batch of glaze in the trash. That was the last of my white confectioner’s sugar, so I simply whipped up a random brown sugar-vanilla glaze to top the doughnuts.
I was a bit disappointed to not be able to try out the rose glaze but I think this particular doughnut will do well with a lemon glaze. Should’ve thought of that instead. The good news is despite the dense crumb, I really really really liked the flavour of these doughnuts! Lemon is usually a winner for me especially when you can taste them so clearly in a pastry, and these exuded the scent and flavour of the yellow citrus I love so much. Yay lemons!
You can get the recipe from the Hummingbird on High blog! 🙂