These fragrant, fluffy donuts were a hit at a Hanukkah baking class I taught for preschoolers and kindergartners. Traditionally, sufganiyot are filled with jelly or custard. Like other Hanukkah staples, including latkes, they are fried in oil to symbolize the ancient legend that a small amount of oil, meant to last only one night, kept a lamp burning for eight days straight in the Temple of Jerusalem. These cake donuts (leavened with baking powder instead of yeast) are seasoned with freshly grated nutmeg, baked in the oven, and glazed with vanilla frosting – though I happened to enjoy the donuts without any glaze at all, as photographed above. While slightly unconventional for Hanukkah, they are absolutely delicious. My students especially loved grating whole nutmeg into the batter. Nutmeg, as I learned through a Google search just before class, is the seed of a tropical evergreen tree native to Indonesia. Its warm spiciness makes these donuts a perfect winter treat, regardless of whether or not you celebrate Hanukkah.
Baked Vanilla Nutmeg Donuts
Adapted from https://thestayathomechef.com/baked-vanilla-cake-donuts/
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup whole milk
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
Adapted from https://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/baked-vanilla-doughnuts-with-vanilla-glaze/e9571640-b3d8-4edb-8b43-fb48a973e984
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon whole milk
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a mini-donut pan with oil.
2) In a medium-size mixing bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
3) Grate a whole nutmeg, and add in a pinch.
4) Mix in egg, milk, and melted butter until combined.
5) Scoop dough into donut molds, filling about 2/3 full. Bake for around 10 minutes.
6) While the donuts are baking, make the glaze: mix powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla in a medium bowl, whisking until smooth.
7) When donuts have finished baking, remove from pan. Dip the tops of the donut in the glaze and decorate with sprinkles, if desired.
Yields around 8-12 donuts, depending on how high the molds are filled.