Homemade Chinese Doughnuts

This Homemade Chinese Doughnut recipe is reminiscent of the ones you get from the Chinese buffet dessert table but made from scratch in less than 1 hour.
My grandpa, my dad’s dad, LOVED Chinese buffets. I could never understand why whenever we tried to organize a family dinner his first choice, and subsequently the place we ended up at, was almost always a Chinese buffet. Even for special occasions! Whether it was the food or the senior citizen discount he received, I will never know. Sadly he lost his battle to leukemia January 1st 2015, which was a rough start to the year for us. Those little things about him, like the fact that he loved Chinese buffets or that he was the only person to still call me “young lady” seem to stand out the most to me still.
Randomly last week I had a strong craving for Chinese doughnuts, the ones that seem to be in the dessert section of every Chinese-American buffet. I have no idea just how traditional or authentic these are to actual Chinese culture, but it was the only reason my brother and I were willing to make so many family trips to Chinese buffets as kids. We LOVED those damn doughnuts. Who wouldn’t? Fried balls of dough coated in sugar? It’s a kid’s dream, and apparently still my dream dessert to this day. So I decided to make them at home.

  • 2 cups (255 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 6 tablespoons (85 grams) cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 3/4 cup (170 grams) whole milk
  • Canola oil for frying
  • Granulated sugar for coating
  1. Pour 2 inches of canola oil into a heavy bottomed pot with a deep-fry thermometer attached. Heat to 350°F.
  2. Meanwhile, in the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Add the butter and pulse several times to cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse meal. You can also do this by hand with a pastry blender. Stir in the milk until combined.
  3. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and dust the dough with flour. Gently pat the dough out until it’s a 1/2-inch in thickness. Use a 2-inch round biscuit cutter to cut out circles.
  4. Fry the doughnuts a few at a time, being careful not to overcrowd the pot. Fry until golden brown and cooked through, about 2 minutes per side, being careful not to let them burn. Let drain on a paper bag (or paper towels) to soak up the excess grease.
  5. While still hot, generously coat each doughnut in granulated sugar. Serve. Doughnuts are best served the day they are made.
You can find complete recipes of this Homemade Chinese Doughnuts in handletheheat.com
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