Whisky, Bacon, and Doughnuts. What a combination, and we're going to show you how to bring the three together in the most amazing way. But first, a little doughnut history lesson.
The true history of the humble doughnut is debatable. Let's face it, the concept of deep-fried dough isn’t exactly unique - various incarnations of this deliciousness have popped up across the globe over the years. Legend has it Dutch immigrants brought their ‘olykoeks’ (literally translated as ‘oil cakes’) with them when they began to settle in the US. Often, the gooey centre wouldn’t cook as fast as the outside, so to get around that they filled the centre with fruit and nuts, or other things that didn’t need to be cooked.
The story goes, American ship captain Hansen Gregory had another solution to the problem of the uncooked centre. In 1847, Gregory punched a hole in the middle of the dough before frying it. That way, he increased the surface area and knocked the uncooked centre out of the equation.
And that's why doughnuts have holes in them.
So, now let's make these doughnuts interesting. Bacon, as we know, is the chameleon of the food pairing kingdom — it’s versatile and seems to make everything better. Even more so when it's candied.
For the whisksy, we'd recommend going for something with a bit of smoke and coastal saltiness to compliment the bacon, so maybe grab something like an Ardbeg, Laphroaig, or Talisker. If you're not so into peat, a Tobermory or Bruichladdich would also work well.
Who's ready to get cooking? We are.
For the doughnuts
2 cups of flour
½ cup mashed potato
½ tsp salt
¼ cup sugar
1 cup milk
5 tsp yeast
Canola oil for frying
For the candied bacon
½ cup golden brown sugar
1 tsp cayenne pepper
10 bacon strips
For the whisky glaze
5 tbsp whisky
2 cups sugar
¼ cup heavy cream
Pinch of salt
1. First up, peel some potatoes and boil until cooked. Then mash them to fill ½ a cup.
2. Now it’s time to make the milk mixture. Pour the milk into a small saucepan and gently warm it up on the stove. You want the milk to be lukewarm, not hot, so keep an eye on it. Once it comes up to temperature, take it off the heat.
3. Add the yeast and a pinch of sugar. Stir it through and let the mixture sit for five minutes until it starts bubbling.
4. Grab a bowl and add in the flour, sugar, salt and potatoes. Then add the milk and 2 tablespoons of canola oil.
5. Knead the dough for three minutes by paddle or hand. Then cover it with plastic film and a damp cloth and let it rise for an hour.
6. Time to make the candy that bacon! Preheat your oven to 180 degrees. While it’s heating up, combine the golden brown sugar and cayenne. Stir until it’s a consistent texture — no clumpy bits!
7. Now, coat the bacon strips with the mixture and place them on a baking tray lined with aluminium foil. Pop it in the oven for 12 minutes, or until they’re nice and crispy.
8. Take the bacon strips out of the oven and let them cool down. Once cool, cut into bite-sized pieces.
9. Let’s get back to the doughnuts, shall we? Punch the risen dough. Lightly cover your bench and rolling pin with flour. Roll out the dough and then cut it into circles using a glass or a doughnut cutter. Then leave the dough to rise again.
10. Pour the canola oil in a deep cast-iron skillet and heat to around 100 degrees (the doughnuts only need to be covered in oil). Feel free to do a test run with the doughnut holes.
11. Place the doughnuts in the oil (3-4 at a time, depending on how big the skillet is). Flip them over every ten or so seconds until they’re golden brown. Then remove them with a heat-safe spatula and pop them on a rack to cool.
12. And now for the glaze. Get your whisky, sugar, heavy cream and salt and pop it in a bowl. Whisk until silky smooth.
13. Now for the fun part -it’s time to bring all of the elements together. Grab the bacon, glaze and the doughnuts. Dip the doughnuts into the glaze in a circular motion until the surface is covered evenly. Then sprinkle on the candied bacon. Do it quickly, before the glaze starts to set. You want the bacon to get stuck in the glaze.
All that's left to do now is pour yourself a well-earned dram and enjoy your creation - a delicious and decadent Sunday treat! Let us know if you make them, we’d love to hear what you think! Be sure to tag us in some photos on Facebook and Instagram, too.
We’ve adapted this recipe from The Whiskypedia.
Image: Baker By Nature.