The best homemade yeasted doughnuts are impossibly rich and light all at once. Yes, they require a little effort to make, but there’s no comparing them to the mass-produced doughnuts sold in franchises everywhere.
Why This Recipe Works
To get the tender texture that we were after in our doughnut recipe, we preferred all-purpose flour to bread flour, which made dense, tough doughnuts reminiscent of bagels. When we tested different fats for frying, we were surprised by the results, ultimately preferring vegetable shortening over peanut oil and lard, because it yielded doughnuts with a clean flavor, airy texture, and the golden, lightly crisped surfaces that we sought. We also discovered that the frying temperature was almost as important as the frying medium itself in our doughnut recipe: too cool and the doughnuts soaked up too much oil and became greasy, too hot and they burned on the outsides before the insides were done.