I know, fried things in my “HEALTHY” January?
I am sorry, but then I am not, because of one, the Super Bowl and then two, Valentines Day. These two-days make these doughnuts one hundred percent acceptable.
Oh AND, it’s Friday.
My reasoning is totally solid, right?!
To be honest, these doughnuts happened because I failed miserably at three other desserts – all in one day, and even though I have been planning these doughnuts for a while, I needed something that I knew would be good and I needed them now!
And come on, you know that homemade doughnuts…with cream AND chocolate, are never gonna let you down.
Originally, I was thinking how perfect these snowballs would be for the Super Bowl because they are small hand-held bites (and they are fried which makes them beyond perfect football food), but then I was thinking, that Cabernet hot chocolate sauce make these equally perfect for Valentines Day.
Even more perfect if you are single like me and need something to help with the full on loneliness of yet another single V-Day. Doughnuts just make things better on so many levels.
OK, and now that you have all had way too much personal info for today let me tell you about these vanilla cream filled Cabernet hot chocolate snowball doughnuts. First the cream, I didn’t even know I liked cream filled doughnuts until I made these, but um yeah, cream filled doughnuts rule. It’s like pudding in a doughnut, but it’s kind of better than pudding because it’s maybe a tad lighter? I don’t know, but it’s good. And even though it’s vanilla cream (not chocolate), I still love it. There is something so cozy about the flavor of vanilla. Kind of reminds me of being a kid and eating those pudding cups after school. Mine where usually chocolate, but sometimes the chocolate were gone and vanilla was all that were left – still cozy and comforting. I love that feeling, if I could have, I would have stayed a kid forever.
Well maybe more like seventeen forever. Not yet an adult, but still old enough to do many adult things. It’s the perfect age, which is probably why there are a billion and one country songs about being Seventeen.
Sorry, it appears my brain is ready for the weekend and my cousins have me thinking about all these crazy things they are currently texting me about. Need to focus.
These doughnuts are actually pretty classic, the hot chocolate sauce is just a fun addition. At first I was just going to stuff these with the hot chocolate sauce and then dust with powdered sugar, BUT then I saw a photo of these delicious looking cream filled doughnuts and I switched gears. Cream in the middle, chocolate for dipping – works for me!
I did want to use powdered sugar, but then I realized I didn’t have any, so I went with some lemon infused sugar instead. I think it was pretty awesome. Lemon and chocolate are surprisingly delicious together.
You do whatever you prefer. Either way these are going to be good.
Vanilla Cream Filled Cabernet Hot Chocolate Snowball Doughnuts.
- 2 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
- 1 cup warm milk I used 2%
- 2 1/2 cups bread flour
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 large egg yolks
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter softened and cut into cubes, 1/2 stick
- Canola oil for frying
- sugar for rolling
- 8 ounces bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate
- 3/4 cup milk (again coconut would be awesome!)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons Cabernet wine or 2 teaspoons vanilla
- pinch of salt
To make the doughnuts, in a medium bowl, combine 1 tablespoon of the yeast with 3/4 cup of the warm milk and stir to dissolve the yeast. Add 3/4 cup of the flour and stir to create a smooth paste. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the flour mixture rest in a warm place for 30 minutes. Once 30 minutes have passed, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the remaining 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon of yeast with the remaining 1/4 cup milk. Now add in the rested flour mixture along with the tsp of vanilla and the 3 large egg yolks. Mix on low until the ingredients are incorporated and the dough is smooth, about 30 seconds. Turn off the mixer and add 1 cup of flour, along with the 2 Tbsp. sugar and the 1/2 tsp. salt. Mix on medium until the dough starts to come together, about 30 seconds. Add the butter and mix on medium until it's incorporated, about another 30 seconds. Remove the paddle attachment from the mixer, and switch to the dough hook. Start adding the remaining flour, 1/4 cup at a time, and knead the dough on medium until it completely pulls away from the side of the bowl and is smooth and not too sticky, about 1 minute. The dough will be very soft and moist but not so sticky that you can't roll it out. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rest in a warm place for 1 hour. After one hour, gently press down on the dough to remove any gas bubbles. At this point you can either roll the dough out or chill the dough, covered, for up to 24 hours.
During this time, make the cream. Place the milk and vanilla bean in medium sauce pot set of over medium-low heat. Bring the milk to a low simmer and allow the vanilla to infuse the milk. In a mixing bowl whisk together the egg yolks and sugar, whisk in the flour until smooth. Once the milk is hot, add about 1/3 cup of the hot milk to the egg mixture and quickly whisk to combine. Add the egg mixture to the rest of the milk, whisking consistently to prevent the eggs from curdling. Continue to cook the mixture until very thick and creamy, about five minute. Remove from the heat and strain the cream through a fine mesh strainer, discard the vanilla bean. Cover the cream with plastic wrap and place in the fridge to cool.
Now take the heavy whipping cream and whisk it until stiff peaks form, about 5 minutes on high speed. Remove the cooled vanilla cream from the fridge and fold it into the whipped cream. Refrigerate until until ready to use.
When ready to roll out the dough, line 2 baking sheets with parchment. Lightly flour a work surface and roll out the dough to a 1/2-inch thickness. Cut the dough in 15-20 squares and then roll each square into a ball. Arrange the doughnuts on the prepared baking sheet, leaving at least 1 inch between doughnuts. Cover the doughnuts loosely with plastic wrap and let them proof in a warm place, about 20-30 minutes.
In a heavy-bottomed large pot or deep fryer, heat at least 2 inches of oil until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350 degrees F. Working in batches, use a slotted metal spoon or spatula to carefully place the doughnuts in the hot oil. Fry, flipping once, until light golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes per side. When done, transfer to a the wire rack. Make sure to return the oil to 350 degrees F. between batches. Let the doughnuts cool slightly (about 2-5 minutes) before filling. Then cover in sugar.
To make the hot chocolate sauce, warm the milk and heavy cream over medium-low heat until bubbles start to show and it begins to lightly and slowly boil. Add the chocolate and whisk until smooth and fully incorporated. Remove from the heat and stir in the Cabernet wine and butter. Transfer to a fondue pot heated over a low flame. Or use a cast iron sauce pot and keep the pot over the lowest flame possible. If the sauce begins to feel a little stiff, add a tablespoon of heavy cream and stir.
Now pierce the base of each doughnut with a piping tube and pipe a little cream filling into each doughnut. Serve warm with the warmed hot chocolate sauce for dipping. Grab a cold milk. Enjoy!
Now it’s time for some serious snowball action.