Friday, December 21, 2012

December Donuts - Week #3: Baked Gingerbread Donuts

It might sound weird, but I am a little sad the boot camp I started before Thanksgiving is over. Does that make me sound crazy?  I sort of got in to the whole waking up at 5:15 am to workout at 5:45 am for an hour: running, doing squats, lunges, push-ups, etc.  Plus, you know, not feeling guilty about indulging in things like these donuts in the middle of the morning at work after making them when I got done working out.  FYI I am totally still trying to decide between making a classic cinnamon sugar donut or a chocolate salted caramel donut as the week 4 donut.  What do you think?  I might just have to do both.

So these donuts...once again I was able to prep these the night before, which made it so much easier to bake these after boot camp and before heading to work.  Out of the 3 donuts I brought to the office, these might have been my favorite.  Then again I am totally a sucker for gingerbread anything and well cream cheese frosting.  I might be on just a little bit of a kick this holiday season, since there has already been gingerbread tiramisu and I am planning on gingerbread cinnamon rolls by the end of the year.  These donuts came out super light and fluffy, and full of flavor!  The cream cheese glaze adds a great tangy flavor to go with the spicy-cinnamon flavor of the donut.   Definitely worth a try!  Enjoy!

The night before I pre-measured all of the dry ingredients and stored them in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

I also measured out the yogurt, molasses and milk in small container, storing it in the refrigerator.  As well as the apple sauce and brown sugar in another.  Then the only thing I had to measure in the morning was the canola oil and add the eggs.

Whisking together the dry and the wet ingredients in two additions.

Straight out of the oven.  Let these donuts cool a bit in the pans.  Treat them like you would a 9" cake that needs to cool a bit so that it comes out of the pan without falling apart.  

I totally ate my breakfast while these were cooling.

Time for a little glaze making action.

Pretty, Pretty donuts.

Gingerbread Donuts with Cream Cheese Glaze: (recipe from Healthy Food for Living)

*makes approximately 11/2 dozen donuts
canola oil cooking spray
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon allspice
2 eggs
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
4 tablespoons unsulfured molasses
6 tablespoons milk
6 tablespoons nonfat or low-fat plain yogurt
3 tablespoons canola oil

Cream Cheese Glaze:
1/2 block (4 oz) 1/3 fat cream cheese, at room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4-6 tablespoons water

1.  Preheat oven to 350°F.

2.  Lightly coat molds of a mini doughnut pan with cooking spray.

3.  In a medium bowl, whisk together flour through allspice; set aside.

4.  In a large bowl, whisk together egg, brown sugar, applesauce, molasses, milk, yogurt and oil.

5.  Add dry ingredients to wet, and stir just until moistened. Divide batter among the prepared molds, filling each 3/4 full. [You may also spoon batter into cooking spray-coated muffin tins].  Bake until the tops spring back when touched lightly, about 5-7 minutes. Late donuts cool in the pans for 8-10 minutes.  Then, carefully remove doughnuts from pan and let cool for a few minutes on a wire rack. [If using a standard muffin tin, extend baking time to about 10-12 minutes; for mini muffins, bake for approximately 7-9 minutes].  While donuts are cooling prepare the glaze.

6.  In a small bow, using the back of a fork, mash the cream cheese until smooth.  Then stir in the vanilla extract and one cup powdered sugar until combined.  If the glaze is too dry to fully incorporate the powdered sugar, add in two tablespoons of water.  Then mix in the remaining cup of powdered sugar, and one tablespoon of water at a time until glaze has reached desired consistency.  (You want the glaze to be runny but still opaque, so that when you dip the donut in the glaze it easily does a nice even coating.)

7.  Once the donuts have cooled completed, dip each into the glaze and sprinkle with just a little cinnamon on top.  Serve and Enjoy! (Definitely best eaten on the same day.)

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