Amber Wilson’s cookbook, For the Love of the South is a delight. It is one of the most strikingly beautiful books I’ve seen recently. The photography and recipes are romantic, sultry, so Southern, and yet, they are entirely approachable. When I first flipped through the pages, I wanted to make everything, but these jelly doughnuts grabbed me the most. I adore a great doughnut and she delivers. Her dough is scented with lemon zest, then filled with blackberry preserves, but there are a number of other homemade fillings to choose from. I’ve since made these doughnuts several times and filled them with everything from pastry cream (vanilla and coconut), lemon curd, whipped milk chocolate mascarpone, and coated them in ganache, all from my Zoë Bakes Cakes book. So, I turned them into the cake they were meant to be! 😉
You can watch me make Amber’s jelly doughnuts on my instagram story and she’s generously allowed me to share the recipe with you here.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons rapid rise yeast
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm water
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
- Peanut or other oil for frying
Superfine Vanilla Sugar
- 1 cup sugar
- Vanilla seeds scraped from 1 pod
- To make the dough: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the flour, sugar, salt, yeast, eggs, lemon zest, and water. Mix on medium speed for about 8 minutes or until the dough pulls away from the sides and forms a ball.
- Allow the dough to rest for one minute, then continue mixing and slowly add the butter. Once the butter is incorporated, turn to high speed and mix until glossy and smooth, about another 5 minutes.
- Put the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover loosely with plastic and let rest until doubled in size, about 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Knead the dough in the bowl, then cover and refrigerate overnight or up to 24 hours.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and dust with flour. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces, shape them into balls and then place them on the prepared baking sheet. Cover with plastic and let rest until doubled in size, about 2 hours.
- To make the superfine vanilla sugar: blend 1 cup sugar with vanilla seeds scraped from 1 vanilla pod. Set aside.
- To fry the dough: In a heavy-bottomed medium pot, heat about 3 inches of oil over medium heat until it reaches 360°F on a thermometer. Line a plate with paper towel. Once the oil it hot, carefully slide the dough into the oil. Only put a couple in at a time, so they have plenty of room to float. Allow to fry for about 2 minutes, then flip them over to cook the other side. Drain the doughnuts on the paper towel for a minute, then dredge the doughnut in the vanilla sugar. Repeat with the rest of the dough.
- Once the doughnuts have cooled slightly, pierce the "seam" of the doughnut with a paring knife, creating a pocket for the filling. Use a pastry bag with a round tip (make sure it is big enough for any fruit to fit through) or use a gallon-sized plastic bag as Amber does. Fill each doughnut.
- Top the jelly doughnuts with a fresh blackberry and serve immediately.
Thank you to Amber Wilson for sharing this fantastic jelly doughnuts recipe and for sending me her lovely new book. The book was a gift from the publisher, but the opinions of it are all my own!