Yuzu-Curd Doughnuts

Since visiting Japan yuzu became my favorite citrus fruit with its amazing floral citrus fragrance that you can smell from across a room, and everytime I come across its unique smell I am reminded of the kitchen of Yoshimi Tanigawa in Kyoto where the juice and grated zest was used abundantly when we visited in the fall. While fresh yuzu is pretty hard to come by in the US  you can still purchase the bottled juice in most Asian markets, make sure to look for the unsalted version.

I wanted to capture the delicate citrus aroma in a big bold manner and there’s no better way to do that than with a curd. If you follow that reasoning there’s also no better way to enjoy a curd than in a doughnut. Some deep thinking went into this. Pfeww! A nice way to re-introduce and intensify the yuzu flavor is to make yuzu sugar with the grated zest from the citrus to coat the doughnuts. If you can’t find fresh yuzu you can always use a combination of orange, lime and lemon zest or Meyer lemons which are in season right now.

I don’t need to praise the mighty all-american doughnut since the whole world already agrees that fried dough is freakin’ fantastic with versions in almost every culture under different code names: zeppole, churros, beignet, spritzkuchen, loukoumades… A delicious sign that there’s hope for humanity.

  • Yuzu-Curd Doughnuts

  • Makes 12 doughnuts
    • Doughnuts:
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 1/4 cup warm water
    • 2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
    • 3 1/2 cups + 2 Tbs all-purpose flour
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
    • 3 eggs
    • 8 tablespoons butter, softened
    • Frying oil
    • Yuzu curd:
    • 6 egg yolks
    • 1 cup sugar
    • 1/2 cup yuzu juice (or combination of lemon, lime.. )
    • 1 stick butter, cut into chunks
    • Yuzu sugar:
    • 1/2 cup sugar
    • grated zest of 4 yuzu or 2 limes or lemons
    • Doughnuts:
    • In the bowl of a mixer combine the yeast, milk and warm water and let it sit for a few minutes. Add the flour, sugar, salt, and the eggs and mix on medium-low speed with the dough hook until the dough comes together, about 5 minutes. Add the butter, a tablespoon at the time, and continue to mix for 5 minutes more until the dough is smooth and shiny. Wrap the dough and refrigerate overnight.
    • Roll out the dough to a thickness of about 1/2 inch. Use a 3-inch round cookie cutter to cut 12 to 14 rounds. Arrange them on a floured baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and let them proof in a warm place for 2 1/2 – 3 hours.
    • Heat the oil to 350‘F. Fry the doughnuts in the hot oil about 2 to 3 minutes on each side. Transfer the doughnuts to a baking tray lined with paper towels. Wait 2 or 3 minutes to roll in yuzu sugar. Cool.
    • Dig a hole using a chopstick on the side of each doughnut and pipe some yuzu curd inside. Better eaten the same day.
    • Yuzu curd:
    • Add about 1 cup of water to a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer. Whisk egg yolks and sugar in a medium size metal bowl, about 1 minute. Add juice to egg mixture and whisk until smooth. Place bowl on top of saucepan. Whisk until thickened, approximately 8 minutes, or until mixture is light yellow and coats the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and stir butter a little at a time. Remove from the heat and cover by laying a layer of plastic wrap directly on the surface of the curd. Refrigerate.
    • Yuzu sugar:
    • Rub the sugar with the citrus zest with the tip of your fingers until fragrant.

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  • http://www.diaryofamadhausfrau.com Themadhausfrau

    What a unique and interesting idea for a doughnut filling. Love it!

  • http://atdownunder.com Vanille

    I would be curious to smell and taste this aromatic citrus.
    The doughnuts look so fluffy !

  • http://simmerdownfood.com noelle {simmer down!}

    I recently spent a ridiculous amount of money on a small bottle of yuzu juice at a Japanese market after reading so much about it online and wanting to satisfy my curiosity. It wasn’t labeled as salted, but upon tasting it I knew this was the case. :( Any clue what I could use it for?

  • http://vanillasugarblog.com vanillasugarblog

    all packed and ready to be shipped to ME!
    they came out perfect zenman

  • Csinkmistress

    These look amazing! I love citrus flavors so I’d bet yuzu could become an addiction for me…

  • http://whatsfordinner-fft.blogspot.com Culinarian

    I’ve never had Yuzu, but now I definitely want to try it. These doughnuts look fabulous (as do your pictures)!

  • Anonymous

    It can be expensive for sure depending on where you buy it. You can still use it for savory dishes, mix it with shoyu to make a ponzu sauce to serve with yellowtail sashimi, or use it to season a tartare. It’s great in hollandaise sauce and I heard it works well in cocktails with watermelon too.

  • http://almostbourdain.blogspot.com Ellie

    These are AMAZING!! Love the yuzu curd. I want to pick up one from the screen.

  • http://twitter.com/CherylDLee Cheryl Lee

    Well these sound just too damn tasty! Might have to head down to Little Tokyo to get some Yuzu juice soon.

  • Stefania

    Deliziosi sono molto belli, ciao

  • http://wildeinthekitchen.blogspot.com Vicki @ WITK

    Such a cool take on traditional filled donuts! I’ve never had yuzu, I’ll have to search my local asain market for them!

  • http://foodandscent.com Eugene @ Food and Scent

    you’ve done it again! they’re the most perfectly shaped doughnuts and yuzu is a great match. Wash that down with sparkling green tea soda et c’est la belle vie!

  • http://simmerdownfood.com noelle {simmer down}

    Ooh, I like all of those ideas, especially the cocktail one! Thanks.

  • http://profiles.google.com/michaelnatkin Michael Natkin

    Wow, they came out so beautiful! I’ve made the mistake of buying salted yuzu juice before, boy is that disappointing :(.

  • http://thrillainmassalia.blogspot.com/ windy marseille

    i was surprised to see quite a bit of yuzu (and also combava, aka kaffir lime) in the kitchens here in Marseille!

  • Jon

    I failed this recipe hard… after I let the dough refrigerate overnight, it was still a bowl of liquid goo. I wasn’t able to handle the dough much less cut it into rounds. It was just mush and didn’t hold its shape. Not sure what happened… not enough flour? I tried to follow the exact measurements.

  • Anonymous

    There’s only 3/4 cup of liquid and a few eggs for over 4 cups of dry ingredients + leavening in this recipe. It’s not possible that it turns into liquid goo. Are you sure you measured the liquids properly?

  • http://MyTastyHandbook.com Adelina Badalyan

    Never had yuzu but I am all for zest and citrus and these doughnuts look delicious!

  • Jon

    Hm, yes, I am sure I used just 1/4 cup of water and 1/2 cup of milk… can’t imagine why, but I couldn’t roll out the dough the next day, it pretty much poured out and was liquid. My batter ended up being where you couldn’t touch it without it coating your hands in goop, even after the night in the fridge. Maybe I just need to try again!

  • Anonymous

    Not sure what could have happened but I stand by the recipe as it is exactly how I made them. It should create a tender, buttery dough similar to brioche.

  • Jessica

    Congrats on having this posted in Foodbuzz! I follow your blog regularly, and oddly enough, just after having read this recipe, i checked Foodbuzz for my daily fix of wonderful recipes and there it was! The doughnuts look scrumptious.

  • http://breadetbutter.wordpress.com/ Su-yin

    Oh man, these look amazing. Ah the things I would do to try one of these babies!

  • http://www.ouichefnetwork.com Oui, Chef

    We are huge fans of yuzu (and donuts!) here in the Oui, Chef kitchen. We first came across it when making Nobu’s Creamy Spicy Shrimp which calls for a splash of the juice in the aioli made for the shrimp. Tough to find the fresh fruit here, but I have bottle juice for the curd and will fake the zest for the sugar! – S

  • Elin

    Congrats….this doughnut is a winner alright :) Yuzu curd for this doughnut…you are a genius zenchef !!! :)

  • http://profiles.google.com/foofoofoodie The Harried Cook cooks

    How beautiful are those doughnuts!!! And I love the idea for the yuzu curd filling! Congrats on Top 9! :)

  • http://www.eaternalbliss.com Rachel

    Gorgeous! I could probably eat all 10 in one sitting. You’ve taken doughnuts to a whole new level of sophistication.

  • http://www.culinarythymes.com Eyster

    These look amazing.

  • Rachel (S[d]OC)

    Love of fried dough is hope for humanity? I’m sure Homer Simpson agrees wholeheartedly!

    I have had a yuzu soda once (yummy) but dont’ recall having it in anything else. A doughnut would be an excellent way to do it.

    You should spring this doughnut on someone and not tell them what’s in it. They think it’s an ordinary lemon cream doughnut and WOWEE what a surprise inside.

  • http://labonnebouche.wordpress.com/ Emilia

    I have to try your recipe. Yuzu curd sounds so good, I love yuzu’s distinct flavour and your doughnuts look simply amazing.

  • http://kitchen-confidante.com Liren

    There certainly is hope for humanity, when it comes to doughnuts! Love the way you think, and I can just imagine how amazing the yuzu curd tastes as a filling!

  • http://profiles.google.com/kitchenresource Chandani Shrestha

    I have always wanted to make doughnut at home. Yummy!!

  • http://profiles.google.com/kitchenresource Chandani Shrestha

    I have always wanted to make doughnut at home. Yummy!!

  • Jon

    No worries, I probably misread my measurements… plan to try again this week.

  • http://www.concretepolishingmagazine.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=76:terazzo-polishing-part-one&catid=9:featured-articles&Itemid=2 Terrazzo Polishing

    Thanks for such a remarkable submit and also the review, I am completely impressed! Keep stuff like this coming.

  • http://www.ledelicieux.com/ Jennifer (Delicieux)

    I love yuzu but would never have though of including them in custard in a doughnut. What a wonderful idea!

  • http://www.azeliaskitchen.net Azeliatorres

    lovely idea.

  • http://joyjoycreativeoutlet.blogspot.com Joy

    I love love this recipe. I didn’t think you could combine lemon and lime to make yuzu. I have been looking everywhere for the juice.

  • Rebecka Evans

    Yum! I love your fluffy Yuzu filled donuts! I’ll be frying up a batch this weekend!

    I have the opportunity to review two new herbal beverages from Marx Foods this week featuring Yuzu. I can’t wait to taste the Yuzu drink! Happy cooking!

  • https://kokken69.blogspot.com shirley@kokken69

    I have been wondering about these ‘midnight’ donuts :). Without even having to taste them, I already know that they are worth losing sleep over! I would buy them in a heartbeat if I see these in the store! Say, have you tasted Mister Donut when you were in Japan?

  • Hebblewhite N

    these look fantastic but the dough unfortunately did not work for me. As another commentator said the dough was extremely difficult to handle, even after refrigerating overnight. Once left to rise the dough just kind of spread out and when i tried to fry them (using a thermometer) the quickly burnt on the outside but the inside was left uncooked. not sure what i did wrong!

  • Anonymous

    If the dough didn’t rise, it means the yeast didn’t activate. Maybe the yeast was too old? The ingredients too cold?

  • Anonymous

    Nooo.. I totally missed out on Mister Donut in Japan. I did go to MOS burger, though. hehe. I need to go back.

  • snippets of thyme

    So many people are making donuts! I am just going to have to jump in and try this out. I tried to fry oysters a while back and didn’t let the oil get hot enough. That was yucky. But, but, but….perhaps donuts!

  • Amelia from Z Tasty Life

    oh for a bite of these… I just discovered the fresh, crisp, tart, citrusy flavor of yuzu recently and this seems sublime

  • Anonymous

    Can I get a dozen to-go? 😉

  • Mere Amateur

    These look delicious! It’s just impossible to get any form of Yuzu here. I have passion fruit curd leftovers from a Pavlova experiment, I properly love doughnuts! Thank you for the inspiration! Big fan btw

  • http://profiles.google.com/tzakiel Jon Van Dalen

    I made this again, and used a bit less liquid (my eggs are large) and measured very carefully. It came out fine!. Delicious – I did find that the donuts were much better eaten immediately. The next day, they were very dense and hard. (I suppose that’s unavoidable for homemade donuts)

  • Vanessa

    I think Yuzu-Curd Doughnut is new to me, but I’m impressed by how they look in the photos! Pastry lovers would never snob this. I’ll be frying up a batch with my kids, but we only use our old cast iron pan, like always. I hope this doesn’t fail this recipe. Thanks for sharing something about Yuzu.
    Vanessa http://www.yoursmartkitchen.com

  • http://aapplemint.com Kajal – Aapplemint

    OMG those look absolutely irresistible, I have my hubby over my shoulder here drooling over these … n says make ’em for me now !
    C’mon over Stephan … i need help and some Yuzu’s !!

  • http://lick-my-spoon.blogspot.com Sukaina

    so glad to have stumbled across your blog. your ughnuts look perfectly formed and beautiful images. I have never tasted yuzu let alone heard of it so you have me intrigues. will look out for it in the supermarket.