My freedom is gone. Done. It’s over. It was ripped away from me faster than I could say “five more minutes.” My wee little holiday break went by so fast, I barely got a chance to enjoy it. Sadly enough, the Christmas decorations still aren’t totally put away. But in my own defense, I was busy. Sleeping.
I’m still not completely sure what happened today. Every since 7 am, it has all sort of been a blur. This is partly due to the fact that I decided to give up Diet Coke five days ago and have subsequently been suffering from migraines, caffeine withdrawal, and extreme irritability. From what I can remember, today consisted mostly of one professor with a thick Russian accent that I just know I will not be able to comprehend by the end of the semester. And for some reason, doughnuts and coffee were being handed out for free every corner I turned. But I resisted, knowing that I had a bowl of homemade brioche dough resting in my refrigerator, waiting to be thrown into a bath of hot oil and fried on up. It took every ounce of self-control that I possess not to shoot down the highway going 90 MPH to get to these Cinnamon Sugar Brioche Doughnuts a little bit faster. These fresh fried, pillowy two-biters are pure ecstasy. Like, probably better than actual ecstasy, but I don’t really care to find out. I fry small balls of brioche and roll the doughnuts in some cinnamon sugar. Then I shove them into my mouth. That is the proper procedure in which to eat these doughnuts, just FYI.
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 1/4 cups bread flour
- 1 1/2 packets active dry yeast
- 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup cold water
- 5 large eggs
- 2 3/4 sticks unsalted butter, at room temperature, cubed
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- Stir together the sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a small bowl and set aside.
- Combine the flours, yeast, sugar, salt, water, and eggs in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the dough hook. Beat on low speed for 2 to 3 minutes, until the dough starts to come together. Beat on low speed for another 3 to 4 minutes, until the dough is stiff and dry.
- With the mixer on low speed, add the butter, one piece at a time, mixing after each addition until the butter disappears into the dough. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat for another 15 minutes, until the dough becomes sticky, soft, and somewhat shiny. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat for another 2 to 3 minutes, until the dough makes a slapping noise against the side of the bowl. The dough is ready when you can gather it into a ball and pick it up in one piece.
- Place the dough in a large bowl and cover with plastic wrap, pressing the wrap directly onto the surface of the dough. Let rest in the refrigerator overnight.
- Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and roll out to a ¾-inch thickness. Using a floured 1-inch round cookie cutter, cut the dough into circles. Transfer the doughnuts to a large baking sheet and cover with a clean dish towel. Let rise in a warm, draft-free area for about 1 hour, until puffed.
- Meanwhile, pour enough oil into a large saucepan to come 2 inches up the side of the pan. Heat the oil over medium-high heat, until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350°F. Working in batches, drop the doughnuts into the hot oil and fry for 1 to 2 minutes, turning occasionally, until golden brown on all sides. Drain on paper towels, then immediately toss in the cinnamon sugar. Serve immediately.