Last time i was in a Krispy Kreme i noticed the three guys in line in front of me were carrying guns under their vests. My mind couldn’t help but playing two possible scenarios, the first is that i was in the middle of a Donut robbery and the thieves were about to grab a stash of jelly donuts and run away. The second is those men were in fact NYPD undercover cops in need of a sugar fix before going to chase the bad guys. The suspense intensified as they placed the order. One of them pulled his gun… to get his wallet in his inside pocket (he had a large tummy!) and i got a peek at his badge. Pfffff. I admit i felt relieved when they left the store with a box of a dozen Boston cream. To be robbed is one thing i can live with but being left without a donut to spare would have me crying for help.
Of course the incident was forgotten after a few bites – until a few nights later i have this really weird dream where I get arrested by the Donut police, handcuffed and placed in a room furnished with just a chair and a blinding donut-shaped light put on my face. All i remember is the officer interrogating me (he looked like an italian landlord with a crazy eye) said loudly: “Hand over the French crullers, you scum!” to which my reply was “Yo mama!”. I have a bad cop/no donut policy even in my dreams. Thankfully my alarm clock rescued me from this creepy dream.
Later that day i put 1+1 together – the donut shop and the dream. I had previously placed a baked donut recipe from Pichet Ong’s new cookbook in my To Do list. A baked donut recipe!? A donut should be fried!! As you may know, donut is the main food group for police officers – therefore baking a donut is running the risk of being arrested and thrown in jail for bad conduct and not adhering to the rules. The bastards were chasing me in my dreams! But what the heck, i tried the baked version and it was good, a bit more chewy than your average donut but still very flavorful and much lighter and airier, the apple filling was both crunchy and juicy. Here you have it friends, try it, love it, hate it but don’t call the cops on me. Cheers!
Sweet Potato Donuts w/ Roasted Apple Filling
(makes 2 dozen)
Sweet Potato Donuts:
- 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1 inch-sliced
- 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
- 1/3 cup evaporated milk
- 1/3 cup buttermilk
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons butter for greasing the molds
Roasted Apple Filling:
- 2 apples, preferably Granny Smith, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch chunks
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 teaspoon butter
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Steam the sweet potato until soft and mash with a fork until smooth. Set aside.
Sprinkle the yeast over 1/4 cup warm water and let it sit until foamy, about 10 minutes.
Transfer the mashed sweet potato to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and add the evaporated milk, buttermilk, and 1/3 cup water. Mix about 3 minutes. Add the sugar and mix until dissolved, about 5 minutes. Turn the mixer to low and add the foamy yeast, then add the flour 1/2 cup at a time. Mix for 1 more minute. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise in a warm place until nearly doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
Meanwhile, make the filling: Toss the apples with the lemon juice, sugar and cinnamon. Set a large skillet over medium heat for 3 minutes, then add the apples and butter. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the apples are browned and slightly softened, about 30 minutes. Stir in the vanilla extract and set aside to cool.
Generously butter two 12-cups muffin tins, then sprinkle the molds lightly with sugar. Fill each mold with 3 tablespoons of the soft, wet dough, then press a piece of roasted apple into the center of each. Gently gather the dough together to cover the apple and pinch the top seam tightly. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and let rise for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350’F.
Uncover the donuts and bake until puffed and golden brown, about 20 minutes. Serve warm.