This recipe is for Polish Yeast doughnuts (or donuts) and are part of the traditional Fat Tuesday celebration preceding the lent fast in North America.... however if you're like me, you don't need an excuse to eat a doughnut. ;)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. salt
8 Tbsp. salted butter melted
1 3/4 cups warm milk
4 eggs beaten
2 packages (1 1/2 tbsp.) active dry yeast
1/4 cup vodka
1 tsp vanilla
4 1/2 cups Frankie's All Purpose Flour
Oil for frying
Fillings (as desired)
Directions: Mix together sugar, salt, butter, milk and eggs. Stir until smooth and well combined. Stir in yeast and allow to sit for at least 5 minutes, or until yeast is dissolved. Stir again and add vodka and vanilla.
Place mixture in the bowl of your electric stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, add 1 1/2 cups Frankie's All Purpose Flour and stir on low until smooth and combined. Set aside in a warm place and allow to proof for 1 - 2 1/2 hours. This should rise and collapse - that's ok. Add remaining 3 cups of flour and beat on high until thickened, about 4 minutes. Mixture should resemble drop cookie dough and be VERY sticky.
Turn out onto floured surface and coat the surface of the dough (surface only - don't knead the flour into the dough) with flour. Roll/pat out dough to 1/2 inch thickness and cut with a floured cutter. Place on a parchment sheet covered cookie tray. Brush off any remaining flour and sprinkle/spray doughnuts with water. Cover lightly with plastic wrap and allow to rise in a warm place for about 30 minutes.
Preheat oil in a heavy pot to 350F. Oil should be at least 1 to 2 inches deep for optimal results. Make sure your oil is heated evenly. Fry doughnuts 1 or 2 at a time for 2-3 minutes, flipping when the bottom of the doughnut is golden brown and cook the other side for 1 to 2 minutes. If your oil is too hot the internal dough will not cook when the outside is done. Watch your oil carefully. Drain cooked doughnuts immediately on paper towels to absorb excess oil.
Top with powdered sugar and fill with your favourite filling. I filled mine with a piping bag and gave each doughnut a tablespoon squirt in each.