Flour is a Boston-based bakery that has been met with much success around here. Partly because their Sticky Buns were featured on a Food Network Show, but mostly because locals just love their baked goods. My sister gave me the Flour cookbook a few years ago and I've been wanting to make their Vanilla Cream-filled Doughnuts for some time now. I've also been wanting to make Boston Cream Doughnuts (because those are my doughnut achilles heel) so when I came across the Vanilla Cream recipe I decided to make half the batch the way Flour does, and the other half topped with chocolate ganache to make Boston Cream. Best. Idea. Ever.
Vanilla Cream-filled Doughnuts & Boston Cream
Recipe adapted from Flour by Joanne Chang
Makes 9, 4-inch doughnuts and 13, 3-inch doughnuts
- This dough needs a lot of time, so be sure to plan for it to rise properly. For instance, I made the dough the night before at 6pm and the next day at 9am (that’s a 15-hour rise!) I was rolling it out and going to let it rise for another 2-3 hours. So if you want these for breakfast, plan on waking up much earlier because they can’t be filled until they are completely cooled.
- The pastry cream also needs to be cold, so it’s best to make this the day before so it’s completely set. While the doughnuts are cooling you can make the chocolate glaze.
For the dough:
1 package active dry yeast (2 ½ tsp)
2/3 Cup milk, at room temperature
3 ½ Cups all-purpose flour
1/3 Cup granulated sugar
2 tsp. salt
7 Tbs. butter, room temperature
Canola or peanut oil for frying
1 Cup granulated sugar
For the vanilla pastry cream filing:
1 ¾ Cup milk
½ Cup granulated sugar
¼ Cup cake flour
½ tsp. salt
4 egg yolks
2 tsp. vanilla extract
6 Tbs. heavy cream
For the chocolate glaze: (from the Samoa donut recipe)
4 oz. dark chocolate chips
½ Cup confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
pinch of salt
½ Cup heavy cream
½ Tbs. unsalted butter
For the dough:
1. In a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment, combine the yeast and milk. Let the yeast dissolve in the milk for one minute, then add the flour, sugar, salt and eggs. On low speed, mix the dough for 4-5 minutes.
2. Cut the butter into pieces and add one piece at a time to the dough, until all the butter is fully incorporated. Mix on medium speed for 3-4 more minutes. Once the dough is mixed, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 6 hours, or up to 15 hours.
3. On a floured work surface, begin rolling out the dough to about ½-inch thick. Use a 3 to 4-inch round cutter and arrange the doughnuts onto a floured baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap, or a kitchen towel, and place in a warm spot to rise for 2 to 3 hours. They should double in height and feel poufy.
4. When ready to fry, pour 2-3 inches of oil in a large, heavy bottomed pot and heat the oil to 350° F. While the oil is heating, prepare a large baking sheet lined with paper towels. Working in batches, gently place the doughnuts in the oil and fry on the first side for 2-3 minutes, or until brown, then flip and fry for another 2-3 minutes, or until brown. Using a slotted spoon, place the doughnuts on the paper towels to cool a bit.
For the vanilla pastry cream: (make in advance to cool)
1. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the milk to a simmer with small bubbles forming around the edge (not boiling!). While the milk is heating, in a medium bowl whisk the egg yolks and then add the sugar, flour and salt. Whisk until there are no clumps (the mixture will be thick).
2. Ladle one spoon-full of hot milk into the egg mixture, whisking to prevent curdling. Continue adding the rest of the milk, and then pour the whole mixture back into the saucepan over medium heat. Whisk vigorously for 3 minutes, or until the mixture comes to a boil and thickens. Boiling the mixture will thicken it and cook out the flour taste, but if it boils for longer than 10 seconds at a time, it will burn and become grainy. Remove the pan from the heat every 10 seconds, then return it back to the heat to keep it boiling and thick.
3. Once the mixture has reached pudding-like consistency, remove the pan from the heat and pour the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve. Stir in the vanilla, and then cover the pastry cream with plastic wrap, placing it directly on the cream to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate for 4 hours, until cold, or up to 3 days.
For the chocolate glaze:
10. Make the chocolate glaze by mixing chocolate, sugar, vanilla, and salt in a bowl. Bring cream and butter to a boil in a small saucepan and then pour the hot cream over the chocolate mixture. Let it sit for 2 minutes before whisking smooth.
Assembling the doughnuts:
*If making Vanilla Cream-filled Doughnuts* then pour 1 cup of granulated sugar into a small bowl and toss the warm doughnuts in the sugar to coat evenly. Place the doughnuts on a wire rack to cool completely.
Once the pastry cream is cold, right before filling the doughnuts, whip the 6 tablespoons of heavy cream until it forms stiff peaks. Fold the whipped cream into the pastry cream. You should have about 3 cups.
When the doughnuts are completely cooled, pour the pastry cream into a pastry bag with a large tip. Poke 2-3 holes around the sides of the doughnut and fill with about 1/3 cup of vanilla cream. Serve immediately.
*If making Boston Cream doughnuts* then once the pastry cream is cold, right before filling the doughnuts, whip the 6 tablespoons of heavy cream until it forms stiff peaks. Fold the whipped cream into the pastry cream. You should have about 3 cups.
When the doughnuts are completely cooled, pour the pastry cream into a pastry bag with a large tip. Poke 2-3 holes around the sides of the doughnut and fill with about 1/3 cup of vanilla cream. Dip the filled doughnut halfway into the chocolate glaze and place back on the wire rack to let the chocolate harden a bit (although it will stay softer since it’s more of a ganache). Enjoy!