Prep 1 hr
Cook 30 mins
from Faye Levy's International Jewish Cookbook. - "Fluffy doughnuts without holes similar to these are known by many names; I've seen them as Bismarck Jelly Doughnuts, krapfen, and in France as boules de Berlin (Berlin balls). Probably Austrian bakers brought them to Israel and now they rival potato pancakes in popularity as Hanukkah food. Other common flavorings for these doughnuts, besides the brandy used in this recipe, are vanilla, grated lemon rind, cinnamon, and nutmeg."
- 3⁄4 cup water, lukewarm
- 2 (1/4 ounce) envelopes active dry yeast
- 1⁄4 cup granulated sugar
- 4 cups all-purpose flour, plus
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, more if necessary (optional)
- 2 large eggs
- 2 large egg yolks
- 7 tablespoons margarine or 7 tablespoons butter, unsalted nondairy, at room temperature
- 2 tablespoons brandy
- 2 teaspoons salt
- vegetable oil, for deep-frying
- 1⁄4 cup apricot preserves or 1⁄4 cup strawberry preserves
- confectioners' sugar, sifted, for sprinkling
- Pour 1/2 cup lukewarm water into a small bowl. Sprinkle yeast on top and add 1 teaspoon sugar. Let stand 10 minute.
- Spoon flour into mixer bowl or another large bowl. Make a well in center and add remaining sugar, eggs, yolks, margarine, brandy, remaining water, and salt. Mix with mixer dough hook or wooden spoon until ingredients are blended. Add yeast mixture and mix with dough hook at low speed or with spoon until ingredients come together to a dough. Beat at medium speed, scraping down dough occasionally, for 5 minutes; or knead by hand for 5 minutes. If dough is very sticky, add 2 tablespoons flour. Knead 5 to 10 minutes more until very smooth.
- Put dough in a clean oiled bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until doubled in volume.
- On a floured surface roll out half the dough until 1/4 inch thick, flouring dough occasionally. Using a 2 1/2 to 3-inch cutter, cut the dough in rounds. Put 1/2 teaspoons apricot or strawberry preserves on center of half the rounds. Brush rim of round lightly with water, then set a plain round on top. With floured fingers, press dough firmly all around to seal it. Transfer this "sanwich" immediately to floured tray. If it has stretched out to an oval, plump it gently back into a round shape. Continue with remaining dough. Cover pastries with a slightly damp cloth and let rise in a warm place about 30 minutes.
- Knead the scraps of dough, put them in a n oiled bowl, cover with a damp cloth, and let stand for about 30 minutes.
- Heat oil to 350F degrees; if a deep-fat thermometer is not available, heat oil until it bubbles gently around a small piece of dough added to it. Add 4 doughnuts or enough to fill pan without crowding. Fry doughnuts about 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Pat tops gently with paper towels to absorb excess oil.
- Make more doughnuts with scraps if you like; they won't be as lights but will still be good.
- Serve warm or at room temperature, sprinkled with confectioners' sugar. Don't serve these immediately because the jam is boiling hot.
These were really easy to make and the texture turned out great but I did not find them that flavorful; I would definitely add more sugar and spices to the batter.