Well, I’d just like to mention what fun I had with Trick-or-trEat, and hope you all did, too.
Sometimes I miss the place where I grew up so badly it physically hurts. At times, I feel exiled, doomed to visit there for short stints at a time, only to be shipped back, all to soon, to wherever I am living.
In the fall, when things are most beautiful in New England, I feel the stab most acutely, and do my best to enjoy the season where I am. This year, I think God has sent me a gift—cut me a break in light of the chaos in my life: the leaves in Utah have been almost as beautiful as they are in Massachusetts.
But, oh, how I miss the cranberry bogs, the smell of burning pine, the endless tangles of bittersweet, 18th Century houses. And long drives on lazy Saturdays through winding back roads that lead to the ocean.
I can’t think of a better way to drown out homesickness than with a warm, custard filled, chocolate glazed doughnut? Can you?
So I made some, and named them after my home.
vanilla bean boston cream doughnuts
vanilla bean filling (recipe follows)
1/4 (60mL) warm water
1 package (1 scant tablespoon) yeast
4 cups (600g) flour, plus more when needed
3/4 cup (145g) sugar
1 cup (250mL) warm water
2 eggs, lightly beaten
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon salt
8 cups oil for frying
ganache glaze (recipe follows)
1. Make vanilla bean filling first (recipe follows) and refrigerate until ready to use. In a small cup measure, combine 1/4 cup warm water with yeast and a pinch of sugar. Let dissolve. It is ready to use when bubbles form on the surface.
2. In an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine flour, sugar, 1 cup of warm water, eggs, butter, and salt. Let it run in the machine on low for 10 minutes, until the dough is smooth and elastic. Turn out onto a floured board and knead for a minute more by hand, adding just enough flour to keep it from sticking to the board. Return dough to the bowl and cover with a towel until doubled in bulk.
3. Bring oil to 325-350 degrees (180 degrees celsius). Roll out dough until thin. Cut with a 3 inch round cookie cutter. Gently lower 2 or three rounds of dough into the hot oil. Fry on both sides until golden brown, about 1-2 minutes on each side. Remove to paper towels to cool.
4. When doughnuts are cool, fill a large pastry bag fitted with a Bismark tip (the long skinny one) with vanilla bean pastry cream. Insert the tip into the side of the doughnuts, and fill with pastry cream. Swirl the top of the doughnuts in the warm ganache glaze and serve.
*This lovely person is my friend Ana. She let me take her picture when she was helping out at our doughnut party.
for the vanilla bean filling:
4 large egg yolks
1/3 cup (63g) granulated sugar
3 tablespoons all purpose flour
4 tablespoons cornstarch
1 1/2 cups (350mL) milk
1/4 cup (60mL) heavy cream
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together egg yolk and sugar until the mixture is thick and light yellow. Stir in flour and cornstarch until smooth.
2. In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, combine milk, cream, and vanilla bean. Heat until almost boiling. Ladle about a third of a cup of the hot liquid, and while whisking, add to the bowl of egg yolks and sugar. Add a little more of the hot liquid, and pour the entire egg yolk mixture into the saucepan. Remove the vanilla bean.
3. Whisk constantly over medium heat until it boils. Whisk constantly for another minute or so until the mixture is very thick and hard to stir. Take off heat and stir in vanilla extract. Cover with plastic wrap and cool. When bowl is no longer hot, refrigerate until ready to use.
for the glaze:
1/3 cup (70mL) heavy cream
1 cup (170g) chocolate chips
1 tablespoon honey or corn syrup
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1. In a medium sized cereal bowl, bring heavy cream to a boil in the microwave, about 30 seconds. Pour in chocolate chips, honey, and vanilla. Let sit for five minutes.
2. Whisk everything with a fork until smooth. Store leftovers in refrigerator until ready to use. I like to eat it with a spoon, or microwave it again as a hot fudge sauce.