Donut balls are round bite sized mini donuts. These tiny treats also known as donut holes. They were originally made from the center piece of dough in traditional ring donuts (when made using a doughnut cutter). In case you were wondering why donut is called a donut? It may have something to do with these treats. They were referred to as fried nuts of dough because of their size hence dough nuts. While donut balls can be an economical method of using up all dough for when making doughnuts with a doughnut cutter they are tasty enough to warrant their very own recipe.They remind me very much of gulgula (Indian fried balls) which I recommend as the yeast free alternative for donuts balls. This donut recipe is an eggless one. Donut balls can be filled or coated in powered sugar or dipped in chocolate or a sugar glaze. Even stuck on a stick to make donut pops.
What Is Donut Ball Dough Made Of ?
Like most donut recipes, the doughnut ball is also yeast based. It is made with a combination of flour; yeast, butter and milk which help activate the yeast. Dairy free alternatives would be to activate the yeast in a sugar water solution rather than yeast.
How to Make Donut Balls
Donuts, like most bread recipes, can be daunting at first. I know from my own experience that they often result in many flopped attempts, but they do get better with practice. The secret to making perfect donuts at home is twofold, the ingredients, especially the type of flour used and kneading and proofing of the dough. Kneading refers to mixing then folding and punching the dough. For best results donut dough should be needed for at least 15 minutes by hand.
The next step is ‘Proofing’ or rising the dough. After kneading the dough needs to rest with a covered with a damp cloth for an hour or so. Then shape into desired shapes. The dough needs to rest an additional 30 minutes or so in a warm place. To test if the dough has proved press with your finger. If the springs back into shaped, it Is not ready, but if it holds its shape it is ready for frying.
To make Donut Balls make the dough according to instructions. Shape by taking a small piece then roll into balls. For more even size, roll dough and use a bottle cap or cookie cutter then shaped into a ball. For a more detailed guide to making perfect yeast dough, read my last post on how to make soft buns every time.
How to Cook Donuts
Donuts are often fried more than they are baked. For optimum results always fry in hot oil. The oil must be hot to ensure that the donut balls are not drenched in oil. Test to see if the oil is ready by placing a small piece of dough in the frying pan. If the dough rises to the top then the oil is ready for frying. Once fried, allow to cool then decorate as desired. They can be dusted with cinnamon, cocoa, castor or icing sugar.
What Flour to Use for Making Doughnuts
I have the best results when using a combination of strong flour (bread flour) and plain flour (cake flour). Bread flour tends to bind better with yeast resulting in s softer fluffy texture. For a more detailed explanation see my previous post of types of flour used in baking. It is also not impossible to make donuts with just one type of flour. In this instance the kneading of the dough plays an important role.
How to Make Donut Pops
These cute pops are a donut spin off from the popular cake pop trend. They are bite sized donut treats -an ideal alternative to making large ring donuts, especially when you have a donut craving! and don’t want the hassle of making a large batch.
To make donut pops, dip in melted white chocolate and top with sprinkles. I used 150g melted white chocolate. I find this type of chocolate quite temperamental, use a double boiler, or small pot within a large pot to melt over hot water instead of direct heat, otherwise you will end up with hard chocolate. To assemble donut pops, fix donut balls onto a lollypop stick or straw or toothpick. Dip in chocolate, top with sprinkles. Alllow chocolate to set before serving. I recommend setting in the fridge. I also stick pops into an apple or lemon to keep them upright while setting.
Easy Donut Ball Recipe
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 cup warm milk
- 7g instant yeast
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- pinch of salt
- 40g butter
- 300 ml vegetable oil for frying
- for cinnamon flavoured add a teaspoon of cinnamon
- 4 tablespoons castor sugar or icing sugar for sprinkling
- Melt all butter. Set aside.
- Heat the milk until warm (not boiling just warm)
- Add sugar to milk. Stir until sugar is dissolved.
- Add yeast. Stir. Cover yeast and milk mixture, set aside for 5 to 10 minutes.
- Sift flour and salt. Make a well in the flour.
- Add melted butter. Add yeast mixture.
- Combine until a soft dough forms.
- Don’t add any additional liquid or flour. Knead until a soft dough forms.
- Place dough in a bowl. Cover with a clean cloth, set aside. Leave to proof until the dough doubles in size, this should occur after 30 minutes or so.
- After 30 minutes punch down the expanded dough. Shape into balls 1-2 cm. Alternatively roll dough flat and use cookie cutter of bottle cap to cut out shapes. Roll in palm to form small balls.
- Place on a tray.
- Cover and allow to rest for another 30 minutes.
- Heat a heavy based pan with vegetable oil.
- Test to see if oil is ready by placing a small piece of dough in the oil. If it rises to the top then it is ready. Add few balls into the oil at a time.
- Fry until golden brown. Remove from oil, drain on a sheet of paper towel.
- Once cool, sprinkle with dust of choice, castor sugar, icing sugar or cinnamon or make into donut pops.
Did you make this recipe?
More Donut Recipes on this Blog
Indian Donut Recipes
Cream Donut Recipes