Baking

A Great Discovery: Making Doughnuts with Yonni

After a short pause to overcome the joys of first trimester pregnancy, my appetite has returned along with my blogging. What a perfect time for a blog about food (especially since I can enjoy it again), and what better food than doughnuts! Yom nom, amiright? #imright.

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Photo credit: Discovery Coffee

I’ve been a fan of Discovery Coffee for some time now, and if you’ve ever visited you’ve surely seen their large and enormously delicious doughnuts from Yonni’s Doughnuts. They have a fantastic regular line up – Old Fashion, Earl Grey Cream, Honey Crueller, Apple Fritter, and each month they come up with a unique feature doughnut. Last week I stopped in and had a visit with Jess to learn how the doughnuts are made and to fry up some of my own.

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We started by rolling out the dough for cake doughnuts. By we, I IMG_2906mean Jess. She’s a pro. If you’ve ever worked with dough, you know it’s only a skill you can learn through trial and error. After lots of practice you come to have a feel for a good texture and consistency. The same goes for rolling the dough to the right thickness, and after making thousands of donuts, Jess has this mastered. Speaking of thousands, each week Discovery puts out 3000 donuts to supply their own cafés as well as Hey Happy, and that number only increases when spring and summer bring festivals.

IMG_2910Once the dough was rolled out and the doughnuts were all cut out and lined up, they went into the freezer, ready to be fried up the next morning. Why freeze them? With all those doughnuts going out, a little prep the day before is definitely necessary. Meanwhile, on the other side of the kitchen, puff pastry was being prepared and piped for cruellers. These beauties also come in a gluten-free variety.

Jess had already prepared the ingredients for yeast doughnuts, so we whipped up the dough in one of the huge mixers using a sourdough starter and a recipe that Jess perfected after starting at Discovery.

We let the dough rise for about 20 minutes, rolled it out and filled up the trays in preparation for the next day.


The left over dough was put to great use: apple fritters! Layered and tossed with apples and cinnamon, the dough is scooped onto trays, ready to be fried.

While we were waiting for the dough to rise, we rolled out some dough that had been proofing for cinnamon buns. This, of course, made me want to make my own cinnamon buns at home, but that’s another blog post. These buns were sliced and left to proof and absorb a butter mixture. Later they are baked and result in humongous sticky buns.

For my visit, we fried up a gluten-free crueller,IMG_7055 a cake doughnut and a few yeast
doughnuts. After just a few minutes in the fryer the doughnuts were ready for dipping. A little orange, caramel and old fashioned glaze as well as some chocolate ganache completed the deliciousness. Not all of the doughnuts made it home. If you’ve never had a doughnut fresh out of the fryer, I recommend doing your best to make it happen.

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You can pick up some doughnuts from Discovery Coffee at their two downtown locations or in James Bay and Oak Bay, at Hey Happy Coffee and at the upcoming Car Free YYJ event. Wychbury Ave will see you there too!

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