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From the Kitchen: Homemade doughnuts bring happy memories

This week, Joyce Walter provides three delectable doughnut recipes
doughnuts stock
Doughnuts (Shutterstock)

Long before commercial outlets opened to sell all kinds of doughnuts and sweet treats, homemakers had their own recipes with which to create a variety of deep-fried or pan-fried delicacies.

This week’s recipes come from the family recipe box and a favourite cookbook.

• • •

Mom’s Cake Doughnuts

1 cup sugar
2 1/2 tbsps. lard or butter
3 eggs
1 cup milk
4 tsps. baking powder
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. salt
3 1/2 cups flour (more or less)
6 lbs. lard

Mix sugar, lard, eggs and milk until smooth. Combine dry ingredients then add to egg mixture. Using too much flour will make doughnuts dry. Place dough onto floured board and roll out. Use a doughnut cutter to cut dough. Remove centres and set aside.

Melt lard in electric deep dryer or deep pan on medium high heat. Be careful of splatters. Drop doughnuts into hot fat. Use the end of a wooden spoon to turn doughnuts as they cook. Fry until light brown on both sides. Use end of spoon to remove from fat. Cool on brown paper placed over racks. Continue frying remainder of cut doughnuts.

Place centres into fat and fry until golden. Place immediately in a brown paper bag in which has been placed a mixture of cinnamon and sugar. Shake to cover then remove to cool on brown paper — doughnut holes before the term became popular.

Regular-sized doughnuts may also be dredged in cinnamon-sugar, if desired.

Note: the six lbs. of lard will be enough to cook five recipes of doughnuts. 

Let fat cool before disposal in a safe manner.

• • •

Sharon’s Mom’s Raised Doughnuts

1 envelope of yeast
1/2 cup water
1 tsp. sugar
1 1/2 cups milk
1/4 cup butter
3 eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. vanilla
5 cups sifted flour

Dissolve yeast in the water and add 1 tsp. sugar.

Scald the milk then add the butter and stir until it melts. Remove from stove and set aside to cool.

Cream the eggs, sugar, salt and vanilla. Add the milk and yeast mixtures and combine. Gradually add the flour until a soft dough forms. Place in a large bowl, cover and let rise. Work down once or twice. 

Transfer dough to a floured board. Roll out and cut with doughnut cutter. Let cut doughnuts rise for 30 minutes.

Fry in hot fat until golden brown. Glaze or shake into cinnamon sugar. Makes 4 1/2 dozen.

• • •

Mennonite Doughnuts

1 cup flour
2 tbsps. butter
2 eggs
1 cup rich milk
2 tsps. baking powder
1/2 tsp. soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. nutmeg
3 cups flour

Beat eggs, butter and sugar together. Dissolve soda in milk. Sift flour, salt and baking powder together. Add nutmeg and add to egg mixture. Beat well.

On a floured board, roll out as soft dough as can be handled. Cut and fry in deep fat.

Joyce Walter can be reached at

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