Parsnip Donuts with Bergamot & Honey Glaze

Ahhhh doughnuts. America's go-to morning treat. America alone makes over ten billion doughnuts a year, so how could we not take a stab at these snack staples. We've had amazing doughnuts and doughnuts that taste like lard, leaving a nasty film on your mouth. We set out to make the best doughnut we've ever had. A doughnut so good that the guilt disappears. According to our sugar and gluten coma from taste testing, I think we've created just that.

We roasted the parsnips the day before we set out to make the dough. It was one of those things we could do while we went about our day, saving us a step the day we made the dough. It is a yeast risen dough, so we made it the night before we planned on frying them up! In the morning we drank our coffee and put on a record while we made the glaze. The dough seemed virtually weightless when we checked on it in the morning a sure sign of a great dough.

We were scrambling for a biscuit cutter of some sorts to punch the donuts and we settled for the top ring of a large mason jar lid. It worked PERFECTLY!

We were scrambling for a biscuit cutter of some sorts to punch the donuts and we settled for the top ring of a large mason jar lid. It worked PERFECTLY!

We were screwed last minute for a hole puncher so we used the back of a pastry tip and it worked great!

We were screwed last minute for a hole puncher so we used the back of a pastry tip and it worked great!

The dough at this point, is literally light as air. 

The dough at this point, is literally light as air. 

We keep the glaze room temp. Dipping the fresh fried donuts into the glaze almost "wakes" the glaze back up so that it can coat all of the fresh fried dough! Roll those suckers all around in the glaze, being sure to coat all the sides. We used chopsticks to make it easier to handle. 

We keep the glaze room temp. Dipping the fresh fried donuts into the glaze almost "wakes" the glaze back up so that it can coat all of the fresh fried dough! Roll those suckers all around in the glaze, being sure to coat all the sides. We used chopsticks to make it easier to handle. 

 The glaze consists of honey from our neighbors bees and floral Bergamot orange, giving it a distinctive aroma that you will not find in other doughnuts. The flavor of fresh local parsnips are almost "minty" in a way. The marriage between the two is so damn delicious and addictive. 

Once the glaze is set, it is perfectly stuck to the donuts, and it doesn't stick to your fingers. 

Once the glaze is set, it is perfectly stuck to the donuts, and it doesn't stick to your fingers. 

As we tore into these bad boys they were so soft. We looked at each other even before eating them in anticipation with what was to follow

Parsnip Donuts

3 medium or 2 large parsnips (peeled)

2 1/2 cups whole milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil (plus much more for frying)

1/2 cup sugar

2 tsp active dry yeast

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

6 cups of A.P. flour (and a little more for work surface)

1.5 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground cardamom 

 

  1. Wrap the parsnips in foil and roast in 400 degree oven until completely soft. 
  2. Place in a food processor with 1/2 cup of the milk and puree until smooth. Set aside to cool. You will need about 2 cups for this recipe. 
  3. Combine the 2 cups of milk, oil, and sugar in a medium sauce pan and bring to a simmer over medium high heat to melt the sugar. Let the mix cool down to about 100 degrees, and add the the yeast. Stir to combine. Make sure that the milk mixture is not too hot, so that you don’t kill the yeast. This is important. You also want to make sure that the mixture is nice and warm, if it is too cold so that the yeast can do the damn thang!
  4. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, add the parsnip puree and the slightly beaten eggs. Mix well.
  5. Stir in 5 cups of flour a little at a time and reserve the other cup for later on. Mix the dough until combined, then cover and store in a warm place for about an hour or until the dough doubles in volume. 
  6. Combine the remaining cup of flour with all of the spices, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk well.
  7. Knead the seasoned flour mixture into the dough until smooth. Cover and rest for another 30 minutes.
  8. On a floured surface, knead the dough a couple of times until it is smooth. Roll out the dough to 1/2 inch thick and cut out donuts with a floured biscuit cutter of your choice. Cut holes out of the donuts (obviously) Once the donuts are all cut out, let them rest for about 20 minutes until they are light and airy before frying. (You can also re-work the dough scraps into a ball and roll out for more donuts! Just try not to overwork the dough. Don’t be “that guy”)

 

For the Honey & Begamont glaze

400 grams confectionary sugar

100 grams whole milk

4 grams kosher salt 

1/4 cup Raw Honey

2 Bergamot (or meyer lemons) (Microplane for zesting)

1. Whisk all of the ingredients together until combined. Then zest the bergamot into the glaze and mix well. 

Now Fry Those Bad Boys Up!

Set the temp of the fryer to 360 and fry in small batches. Do not overcrowd the fryer, let them cook for about 2 minutes per side (depending on size) until golden brown. Drain on a paper towel and dip in the glaze, then set on a wire rack to cool. 

 

 

 

Parsnip Cake with Bacon Fat Buttercream & Maple Sugar Pecans

I obviously love parsnips. The thought of making a carrot cake recipe using parsnips seemed to be a good idea. Parsnips can be drier than a carrots, so I was careful to add a touch more butter and vegetable oil, to make up for the difference. It worked out fine. In fact, it was a complete hit. Parsnips take over a hundred days to grow from seed and they are well worth the wait. 

There is something about the fresh parsnips that you buy at a farmers market that are light years away from the ones you buy in the grocery store. The ones I have grown have a very distinctive flavor, like a cross between parsley, carrots and mint. We played off of these flavors in this recipe by adding dried ginger and ground star anise to the cake batter.

The maple sugar pecans were definitely something we wanted to add for texture and flavor. We made some bacon for breakfast that morning and had leftover rendered fat. It just seemed appropriate to carefully add that light, smoky flavor to the buttercream. This is a very simple cake to make! The buttercream has just a good amount of cream cheese in it too because, well, cream cheese rules.  

It's good to make sure that the cake is chilled before frosting the layers. More info in the recipe below!

 

Parsnip cake side shot 3.jpg

Parsnip Cake Recipe

2 1/2 cups all purpose-flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground star anise 

1/2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg

1 stick butter

1 1/4 cup sugar

3/4 cup brown sugar

4 large eggs room temp

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp vegetable oil

3 cups (packed) grated parsnips 

To Make the Cake

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350 f.

Cut the bottoms and sides of a springform cake pan with nonstick cooking spray or butter and line with parchment paper on the bottom. 

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices into a medium bowl.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment ( or in a large bowl, using a hand-held mixer ) beat the butter and sugars on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 4 minutes

Whisk together the eggs, vegetable oil, and vanilla in a small bowl, pour the mixture into the creamed butter, and beat until smooth, two to three minutes. Scrape the bowl and beat for one minute. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients in two batches, mixing for two minutes after each addition. Scrape the bowl. Fold in the parsnips and mix until incorporated, about 1 minute.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan, spreading it evenly. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until the cake appears firm and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the cake cool for about 10 to 15 minutes in the pan on cooling racks, then remove and cool completely on the rack. Wrap the cake in plastic wrap and refrigerate until you are ready to assemble. 

 It is best to decorate or frost the cake while the cake is cold. 

For the Bacon Fat Buttercream

12 oz ofcream cheese, softened

3 oz rendered bacon fat (room temperature)

1 stick of butter, softened

2 tsp grated lemon zest, microplane works best

1 Tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar 

To Make the Frosting

In the bowl of the stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large bowl, using a handheld mixer), beat the cream cheese on medium speed for about 3 minutes, scraping down the sides.

Add the butter, juice, zest, vanilla and bacon fat and beat until smooth.

Scrape the bowl and reduce the speed to low, then slowly add the confectioner’s sugar and beat until smooth.

We sliced the cake into thirds lengthwise and frosted between the cake in layers with an offset spatula. 

Parsnip Donuts with Honey Bergamot Glaze

Ahhhh doughnuts. America's go-to morning treat. America alone makes over ten billion doughnuts a year, so how could we not take a stab at these snack staples. We've had amazing doughnuts and doughnuts that taste like lard, leaving a nasty film on your mouth. We set out to make the best doughnut we've ever had. A doughnut so good that the guilt disappears. According to our sugar and gluten coma from taste testing I think we've created just that.

We roasted the parsnips the day before we set out to make the dough. It was one of those things we could do while we went about our day, saving us a step the day we made the dough. It is a yeast risen dough, so we made it the night before we planned on frying them up! In the morning we drank our coffee and put on a record while we made the glaze. The dough seemed virtually weightless when we checked on it in the morning a sure sign of a great dough.

We were scrambling for a biscuit cutter of some sorts to punch the donuts and we settled for the top ring of a large mason jar lid. It worked PERFECTLY!

We were scrambling for a biscuit cutter of some sorts to punch the donuts and we settled for the top ring of a large mason jar lid. It worked PERFECTLY!

We were screwed last minute for a hole puncher so we used the back of a pastry tip and it worked great!

We were screwed last minute for a hole puncher so we used the back of a pastry tip and it worked great!

The dough at this point, is literally light as air. 

The dough at this point, is literally light as air. 

We keep the glaze room temp. Dipping the fresh fried donuts into the glaze almost "wakes" the glaze back up so that it can coat all of the fresh fried dough! Roll those suckers all around in the glaze, being sure to coat all the sides. We used chopsticks to make it easier to handle. 

We keep the glaze room temp. Dipping the fresh fried donuts into the glaze almost "wakes" the glaze back up so that it can coat all of the fresh fried dough! Roll those suckers all around in the glaze, being sure to coat all the sides. We used chopsticks to make it easier to handle. 

 The glaze consists of honey from our neighbors bees and floral Bergamot orange, giving it a distinctive aroma that you will not find in other doughnuts. The flavor of fresh local parsnips are almost "minty" in a way. The marriage between the two is so damn delicious and addictive. 

Once the glaze is set, it is perfectly stuck to the donuts, and it doesn't stick to your fingers. 

Once the glaze is set, it is perfectly stuck to the donuts, and it doesn't stick to your fingers. 

As we tore into these bad boys they were so soft. We looked at each other even before eating them in anticipation with what was to follow

Parsnip Donuts

3 medium or 2 large parsnips (peeled)

2 1/2 cups whole milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil (plus much more for frying)

1/2 cup sugar

2 tsp active dry yeast

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

6 cups of A.P. flour (and a little more for work surface)

1.5 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground cardamom 

 

  1. Wrap the parsnips in foil and roast in 400 degree oven until completely soft. 
  2. Place in a food processor with 1/2 cup of the milk and puree until smooth. Set aside to cool. You will need about 2 cups for this recipe. 
  3. Combine the 2 cups of milk, oil, and sugar in a medium sauce pan and bring to a simmer over medium high heat to melt the sugar. Let the mix cool down to about 100 degrees, and add the the yeast. Stir to combine. Make sure that the milk mixture is not too hot, so that you don’t kill the yeast. This is important. You also want to make sure that the mixture is nice and warm, if it is too cold so that the yeast can do the damn thang!
  4. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, add the parsnip puree and the slightly beaten eggs. Mix well.
  5. Stir in 5 cups of flour a little at a time and reserve the other cup for later on. Mix the dough until combined, then cover and store in a warm place for about an hour or until the dough doubles in volume. 
  6. Combine the remaining cup of flour with all of the spices, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk well.
  7. Knead the seasoned flour mixture into the dough until smooth. Cover and rest for another 30 minutes.
  8. On a floured surface, knead the dough a couple of times until it is smooth. Roll out the dough to 1/2 inch thick and cut out donuts with a floured biscuit cutter of your choice. Cut holes out of the donuts (obviously) Once the donuts are all cut out, let them rest for about 20 minutes until they are light and airy before frying. (You can also re-work the dough scraps into a ball and roll out for more donuts! Just try not to overwork the dough. Don’t be “that guy”)

 

For the Honey & Begamont glaze

400 grams confectionary sugar

100 grams whole milk

4 grams kosher salt 

1/4 cup Raw Honey

2 Bergamot (or meyer lemons) (Microplane for zesting)

1. Whisk all of the ingredients together until combined. Then zest the bergamot into the glaze and mix well. 

Now Fry Those Bad Boys Up!

Set the temp of the fryer to 360 and fry in small batches. Do not overcrowd the fryer, let them cook for about 2 minutes per side (depending on size) until golden brown. Drain on a paper towel and dip in the glaze, then set on a wire rack to cool.