Cinnamon Sugar Pretzels – (with a savoury variation too)

I’ve always meant to make pretzels but never got round to it, until now! I’m doing a lockdown cookbook challenge lockdowncookbookchallenge on Instagram whereby one of us picks a random cookbook from the shelves and I have to cook at least two recipes from it. Why don’t you join? it’s really fun, a great way to get inspiration and the nudge you need to dip into some of those less used cookbooks.

One of the recent picks was Scandilicious by Signe Johansen, its a cookbook I really like but one that I haven’t picked up in years. By dipping in I can immediately remember recipes I’ve tried and see the ones I’ve page marked but never got round to trying. It’s a great way to fire up that imagination. Pretzels was just one of those and so here is my adapted recipe, made into a sweet sugar and cinnamon coated creation to bring a smile to everyone’s face. Think the taste of a doughnut but in a healthier, slightly chewier format – delicious!

I’ve added a tip at the end to make savoury pretzels too – I made a batch of 12 and had 4 sweet, 4 salty and 4 coated in poppy seeds – combining a sweet treat with some lovely fresh rolls and freeze brilliantly – win win! ūüôā

Cinnamon Sugar Pretzels

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut=free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegan and vegetarian)

makes 12

500g strong bread flour

1 tsp salt

1 tbsp fast action dried yeast

2 tbsp maple syrup or golden syrup

1 tbsp oil

250-300ml water

2 tbsp bicarbonate of soda

2 tbsp dairy-free margarine, melted

3 tbsp caster sugar

2 tsp cinnamon

(for savoury, generous sprinkling of crystal sea salt or a  handful of poppy seeds)

  1. Pour the flour and salt into a bowl, add the yeast.
  2. Pour in the syrup, oil and 250-300ml water, bring together to a soft but not sticky dough and then knead until silky smooth and bouncy. This will take up to 10 minutes. Cover and leave to prove. You want the dough to double in size and this will take 1-2 hours.
  3. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Centigrade fan/220 degrees non fan
  4. Divide the dough into 12 even pieces roll into loose balls, cover and leave to rest for 10 minutes.
  5. Take each ball, roll into a sausage shape and then twist into a pretzel knot. Keep the made knots covered with a tea towel.
  6. Bring a saucepan of water to the boil, pour in the bicarb and then add the pretzel knots in threes cooking for 30 seconds on each side. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and place on a baking sheet. Continue until all the knots have been boiled in the bicarb mix.
  7. For savoury pretzels sprinkle them whilst they are still damp with the salt and/or poppy seeds. For sweet leave ungarnished.
  8. Bake for 12-15 minutes until they have risen and have a lovely burnished bronzed appearance.
  9. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.
  10. To make the sweet pretzels: mix together the sugar and cinnamon. Brush each cooled pretzel with melted margarine and then roll in the cinnamon suagr until they are completely coated. Eat as soon as possible and try not to lick your lips!

 

Krispie Kreme Doughnuts – no dairy or eggs here.

Where do you stand with Krispie Kreme doughnuts? Most people can’t seem to get enough of them, in fact at our workplaces and schools they seem to be the luxurious treat of choice. I find them a bit too sickly and sweet!

Since my girls can’t have them and they see their friends excitedly tucking in, I decided that I had to make a home made variation. It’s good to know what everything is like isn’t it? I chose to make mini ones which was actually a good plan as it avoided the sweet overload whilst still getting the Krispie Kreme effect.

I personally think these are even better than Krispie Kremes- the dough is light and airy and the glaze give a pleasing sugary shell which shatters nicely when you bite in, and also serves to keep them fresh until the next day – genius!

Enjoy ūüôā

Krispie Kreme Doughnuts

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

makes about 18-20 mini doughnuts

2 tbsp caster sugar

1/2 cup water

1 tsp dried yeast

1 tbsps melted dairy-free margarine

1 and 1/2 cups plain flour

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking powder

for the glaze:

2 cups icing sugar

2 tbsp dairy-free milk

1 tbsp golden or maple syrup

  1. Sift together the flour and baking powder. Stir in the caster sugar. Add the yeast to one side of the bowl and the salt to the other.
  2. Pour in the melted margarine and water
  3. Bring together to form a dough, knead until smooth.
  4. Cover the bowl and let rise for an hour or two
  5. Roll out the dough to about 1 inch thick and cut out circles or rings with cutters.
  6. Place on a floured baking sheet. Cover and leave to prove for an extra 15 minutes
  7. Bring a pan of flavourless oil up to heat (360 degrees Centigrade Рit’s the right temperature when a piece of bread bubbles on contact)
  8. Deep fry 2-3 doughnuts at a time until well browned all over. this will take a minute or two on each side.
  9. Drain on paper towels
  10. Make the glaze by heating all the ingredients in the microwave for 30 seconds, then whisking until smooth.
  11. Roll the warm doughnuts in the glaze until fully covered, then place on a wire rack to set.
  12. Eat as soon as possible!

Maple glazed spiced doughnuts

 

maple glazed spiced doughnuts, dairy-free egg-free nut-free

I love getting requests and this week I was asked¬†for doughnuts, which gave me the perfect opportunity to get all experimental with flavours and designs –¬†bliss!

I’ve had a really good quality bottle of maple syrup in the cupboard for a while and it’s been begging me to be used in other ways than poured over waffles (recipe coming soon!) or yogurt, so that had to feature, and a maple syrup glaze sounded rather tempting! Since maple syrup has a mellow sweetness I’ve given the actual doughnuts a subtle spice to give an overall warm cosines – it is still wintery¬†after all, so any warmth and goodness is most welcome.

I’m particuarly pleased with this riff on my usual baked doughnut recipe – the flavours work really well and the maple glazed has a wonderful soft bite which is perfect for a doughnut. I was worried that they’d look a little anaemic as the icing is a syrupy tan colour on a golden doughnut, so a sprinkle of adornments definitely adds to the overall look.

maple glazed doughnuts, dairy-free egg-free

Maple Glazed Spiced Doughnuts

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

vegan maple glazed doughnuts

Makes 20 doughnuts

3 cups self-raising flour

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1/2 cup soft brown sugar

1/4 cup caster sugar

Pinch of salt

1/2 cup dairy-free margarine, melted

5 tbsp of aquafaba (water from a tin of chickpeas or beans)

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp mixed spice

1 cup dairy-free milk

  1. Grease your doughnut pan¬†(or follow the instructions here if you don’t own one)¬†and preheat the oven to¬†220 degrees centigrade
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients. Combine the wet ingredients and pour into the dry. Gently mix until fully combined.
  3. Pipe or spoon into the tin
  4. Bake for 7-10 minutes until well risen and a knife comes out clean. Remove  from the tins and cool.

baked dairy-free egg-free donuts

for the icing:

2 cups icing sugar, sifted

50g dairy free margarine, melted

 

100ml maple syrup

  1. Whisk together then use to coat the doughnuts and sprinkle with decorations.

vegan maple glazed donuts

Biscoff Filled Spiced Doughnuts

 

lotus filled vegan doughnuts

Are doughnuts the ultimate naughty, sweet treat? There’s something about them that screams crazy overindulgence – the sugar, the filing, the fact they’re fried! And, it’s national doughnut week [if I was looking for an excuse to make some more!]

dairy-free donuts

Little S is off on a school residential trip this week, it’s the longest she’s ever been away from home, and we’ve really been missing her and her¬†amazing positive energy that keeps us all buzzy and upbeat! Also, we’ve obviously been worried about food – the centre were very on the case and reassured me before she went, but you can’t help wondering if she is actually eating anything, or brave enough to trust someone else’s food….

Anyway, she’s home tomorrow (at last) and so I just had to create a special treat to welcome her back home, where she belongs. And so evolved this batch of super ‘naughty but nice’ Lotus spread filled (or jam for any traditionalists) spiced doughnuts, a proper treat to great the smallest member of the family back home ūüôā

egg-free doughnuts

These beauties are proper handful sized doughnuts, spiced with wonderful Speculaas Spice and then filed with smooth Caramelised Lotus Biscoff spread keeping the mellow spiced theme Рutter delight!

dairy-free filled doughnuts

 

Filled Spiced Doughnuts

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

makes about 8

1 cup water

1/2 tbsp dried yeast

2 tbsps melted dairy-free margarine, such as Pure

3 cups plain flour

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp speculaas spice or cinnamon

1/4 cup caster sugar

1/2 cup smooth Lotus Biscoff spread or seedless raspberry jam to fill

1/2 cup caster sugar, to roll in

lotus filled egg-free doughnuts

  1. Mix together the water and melted margarine
  2. Sift together the flour, salt, baking powder and cinnamon
  3. Stir in the 1/4 cup caster sugar
  4. Pour in the water mixture and bring together to form a soft dough
  5. Cover the bowl and let rise for an hour or two
  6. Roll out the dough to about 1 inch thick and cut out circles or rings with cutters.
  7. Place on a floured baking sheet. Cover and leave to prove for an extra 15 minutes

vegan fried donuts

  1. Bring a pan of flavourless oil up to heat (180 degrees centigrade Рit’s the right temperature when a piece of bread bubbles on contact)
  2. Deep fry 2-3 doughnuts at a time until well browned all over
  3. Drain on paper towels
  4. Roll in the sugar whilst still warm.
  5. To fill the doughnuts ‚Äď once cool, make a small hole in one side and pipe in some lotus spread or raspberry jam.

vegan fried donuts

Sugar coated baked cinnamon doughnut rings

dairy-free cinnamon sugar doughnuts

Iced doughnuts are one thing, but sugar coated rings are the stuff of memories and traditions ( well for me anyway!) – it’s those sugar coated rings that are used for traditional party games such as eating doughnuts without licking your lips and without hands when they’re hanging in strings – to me they seem more evocative.

egg-free sugar donuts

I was so happy with the results from by baked doughnuts, that I rushed out and bought a doughnut tin; I just couldn’t resist making more doughnuts and this time in perfect little rings! While this recipe may only be a small riff on the original baked doughnut recipe, I think it’s worth posting – the added cinnamon gives a lovely warmth, but careful don’t add too much or the delicate doughnut taste will be lost forever! Most recipes I’ve come across brush the bake doughnuts with butter (dairy-free in my case, obviously!) before rolling in sugar (has to be caster in my opinion) but I found that gives a greasy feel¬†which I wanted to avoid. So I brushed my doughnuts with a thin water icing of 4 tbsp of water to 1/2 ¬†cup icing sugar) and then rolled them in the caster sugar. This gave a lovely, slightly crisp exterior and ensured the sugar to stayed in place.

These doughnuts keep ok, they’re definitely best eaten on the day made as they tend to soften and the sugar on the outside starts to seep into the middle, but if you’re happy with a softer doughnut then they’re good for a couple of days ( if they last that long!)

Mini Baked Cinnamon Sugar coated Doughnuts

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

vegan baked sugar coated doughnuts

Makes 20 mini doughnuts

3 cups self-raising flour

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

3/4 cup caster sugar

Pinch of salt

1/2 cup dairy-free margarine, melted

5 tbsp of aquafaba (the water from a tin of beans or chickpeas)

1 tsp cinnamon

1 cup dairy-free milk

  1. Grease your pan, place foil tubes in the centre of each and preheat the oven to 220 degrees centigrade
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients. Combine the wet ingredients and pour into the dry. Gently mix until fully combined.
  3. Pipe or spoon into the tin
  4. Bake for 7-10 minutes until well risen and a knife comes out clean. Remove  from the tins and cool.

baked doughnut rings, egg-free

for the coating:

1/2 cup icing sugar

4 tbsps water

1/2 cup caster sugar

1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional)

coating doughnuts in sugar

  1. Mix together the water and icing sugar to form a thin icing. Pour the caster sugar and cinnamon (if using) into a shallow bowl.
  2. Brush each doughnut with a thin coating of the water icing and then coat in the sugar
  3. Leave to set on a wire rack

dairy-free sugar coated donut

Dairy-free Baked Mini Doughnuts

 

vegan baked doughnuts

I don’t know about you, but for us, other people eating doughnuts seems to crop up a lot! They feature as the treat of choice in so many scenarios – from the highlight of school match tea to that Halloween game of dangling them on strings and trying to eat them with no hands . I’ve made ‘proper’¬†doughnuts before with¬†great success, but you really don’t want to eat or make deep fried dough too regularly, so here is a¬†great baked doughnut recipe idea to have to hand.

I’ve made baked doughnuts before too and although¬†they were perfectly passable,¬†they weren’t as fantastic as I’d hoped. This recipe instead is far better, the doughnuts don’t stick (bonus!), they’re light and fluffy but also distinctly doughnutty rather than cakey. ¬†They are an absolute joy to eat and make! And the secret? Well it’s a dose of good old aquafaba to replace the usual eggs in a doughnut batter and it works a treat, giving a fantastic rise and thankfully no hint of beanyness in sight!

I know the aquafaba direction has gone from simple meringues to general egg replacement ¬†– however, I haven’t always been convinced. The cookies I’ve tried with aquafaba haven’t been as good as my egg-free versions and you certainly don’t want to use too much in any recipe. This recipe is ¬†an exception, the aquafaba really, really improves it.

I don’t have a doughnut pan so I improvised with foil tubes placed in the centre of muffin holes – they may not be as perfect but they’re still doughnuts with holes!

homemade doughnut tin

Mini Baked Doughnuts

(dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

Makes 20 mini doughnuts

3 cups self-raising flour

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

3/4 cup caster sugar

Pinch of salt

1/2 cup dairy-free margarine, melted

5 tbsp of aquafaba

2 tsp vanilla

1 cup dairy-free milk

  1. Grease your pan, place foil tubes in the centre of each and preheat the oven to 220 degrees centigrade
  2. Mix together the dry ingredients. Combine the wet ingredients and pour into the dry. Gently mix until fully combined.
  3. Pipe or spoon into the tin
  4. Bake for 7-10 minutes until well risen and a knife comes out clean. Remove  from the tins and cool.

baked mini donuts, nut-free

For the icing:

pink iced doughnuts, egg-free, dairy-free

2 cups icing sugar, sifted

2 tbsp dairy free margarine, melted

2 tbsp dairy free milk

Food colouring

1/2 tsp vanilla

  1. Whisk together then use to coat the doughnuts and sprinkle with decorations.

vegan iced donuts