Apple Cider Donuts Recipe (and giveaway winner!)

apple-cider-donuts

Now that snow is falling and the weather is shifting from pleasantly crisp to bitter cold in Chicago, I thought I’d give apples one last hurrah before breaking out the peppermint and gingerbread. This recipe from Cheers to Vegan Sweets is classic and unadulterated apple cider goodness. If you’ve ever wished the apple orchard cider donuts were vegan, this recipe is for you.

I don’t mess around with donuts; these cake donuts are fried, not baked. A soft and pillowy donut with a crunchy cinnamon sugar coating can really only be achieved by deep frying. If you’re a little anxious about frying, just remember that your kitchen will smell like a donut shop for several hours after making the donuts.

Apple Cider Donuts

From Cheers to Vegan Sweets
Makes 12 donuts

For the donuts:

2 small apples, chopped into 1⁄2-inch (1.5 cm) pieces
1 cup (235 ml) apple cider
1 cinnamon stick
11⁄2 cups (300 g) sugar
2 tablespoons (25 g) vegan shortening
2 tablespoons (28 g) vegan margarine
1⁄2 cup (115 g) vanilla flavored non-dairy yogurt
1 teaspoon (5 ml) vanilla extract 4 cups (500 g) flour
2 teaspoons (9 g) baking powder 1⁄4 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons (4.5 g) cinnamon
1⁄4 teaspoon nutmeg
1⁄2 teaspoon salt

For the glaze:

2 cups (240 g) powdered sugar
1⁄2 cup (120 ml) apple cider, warm 1 cup (200 g) sugar
2 teaspoons (4.5 g) cinnamon
Vegetable oil for frying

To make donuts: Place apples, cider, and cinnamon stick in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer uncovered for 9 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat, remove cinnamon stick, and purée the apples, leaving a few chunks, to make 1 cup (245 g) of thick applesauce.
Cream together sugar, shortening, and margarine. Add applesauce, yogurt, and vanilla.
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and salt in a separate bowl. Gradually mix into the wet ingredients.
The dough should be very thick. A sticky dough won’t hold its shape while frying, so if the dough seems watery or sticky, add flour 1⁄4 cup (31 g) at a time until it reaches the right consistency.
Using a spatula, spread dough into a 10 x 14-inch (25.4 x 35.5 cm) rectangle that is about 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick onto a baking sheet lined with parchment, cover with plastic wrap, and chill for at least 2 hours.
Once the dough is chilled, prepare your deep fryer or large pot with at least 2 inches (5 cm) of vegetable oil and heat to 350°F (180°C). Toss a small piece of dough in the oil. If it bubbles and rises to the top, the oil is ready.
Cut out donuts with a 3-inch (7.5 cm) cookie or donut cutter and make holes in the centers with a smaller cookie cutter or your finger. Fry 2 to 3 donuts at a time for 1 to 2 minutes on each side until golden. Transfer to a wire rack set over a baking sheet lined with paper towels or paper bags to catch oil drips.

To make glaze: Stir the powdered sugar with the cider in a small bowl, whisking until it forms a smooth glaze.
Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a shallow bowl. Submerge donuts in the glaze and let the excess drip off, then transfer to cinnamon sugar mixture and coat completely.

And last, but not least, I’d like to announce the winner of the giveaway…Megan Conner! Please email me your mailing address, Megan. Congrats!

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Cheers to Vegan Sweets super giveaway!

Hi everyone! I am back in action today with a super giveaway. This is Seitan Beats Your Meat’s very first contest and giveaway, so I decided to make it a good one! The main prize is a copy of Cheers to Vegan Sweets and it’s filled with lots of other goodies and reading material!

seitan-beats-your-meat-giveaway

The package contains the following items:

  1. A signed copy of Cheers to Vegan Sweets. All the drink-inspired vegan desserts!
  2. An 8×10 limited edition archival inkjet food photo print. Luster-finish professional photo paper. Signed and dated on the back. It’ll fit in an 8×10 frame for your kitchen!
  3. A copy of Vegan Candyland. Caramels, Tootsie Rolls, and Kit Kats, oh my!
  4. A 6×8 signed ‘Super Bun‘ print from The Sweet Bunny Project, a wonderful non-profit that raises money to find homes for rabbits, covers medical expenses for bunnies in need, and educates the public about bunny care and health.
  5. Some postcards, and anything else I decide to put in there when I’m packing it up (maybe a drawing of a cat or a panda or a donut)

The giveaway is open NOW. Get your entries in before Tuesday the 26th at 12 a.m. and I’ll make a post revealing the winner on Tuesday. It’s free to enter (and there’s at least one way for everyone to enter, even if you don’t use social media) and the prize is a sweet, valuable package!

To enter, please use the widget below and leave a blog post comment (using a valid email address so I have a way to contact you if you win!).

*Due to shipping costs, this giveaway is US only. I’m sorry! However, Cheers to Vegan Sweets is an international release, so you can find it online or your local bookstore! Also, I’ll be sure to post about any international giveaways on Twitter and Facebook if they happen.

11/25/13: The giveaway has ended. Check back tomorrow for the winner!

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Cheers to Pumpkin Beer Pancakes

Now that it’s October, you’re probably prepared to face an overabundance of pumpkin-themed posts and photos in your blog readers and on social media. For me, the pumpkin craze is a reminder of the impending doom that is winter, which makes me swear, every year, that I need to move far away from the Midwest ASAP and never experience seasons again. But if there’s one thing I enjoy about fall and winter, it’s snuggling up with a blanket, a fluffy animal, and a hot beverage while reading a book or watching TV. I guess pumpkin fits right in that picture in the form of tea, baked goods, or one of my personal favorites: pancakes.

vegan-pumpkin-pancakes

What makes pumpkin pancakes even better? Adding pumpkin beer to them. I made them for breakfast earlier this week, and have been eating leftovers for the past few days. They taste like pumpkin pie, and the beer adds fluffiness and flavor. The original recipe is from Cheers to Vegan Sweets.

I used Trader Joe’s pumpkin ale this time, but I’m waiting to get my hands on Lakefront Brewery’s Pumpkin Lager from Milwaukee, which I bought every year when I lived there.

Pumpkin Spice Beercakes

Adapted from Cheers to Vegan Sweets

Ingredients

2 cups white flour or whole wheat pastry flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 tablespoon cornmeal
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
½ teaspoon ginger
¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
⅛ teaspoon cloves
¼ teaspoon salt

¾ cup pumpkin puree
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
12 ounces (one bottle) pumpkin beer
1 tablespoon margarine

Instructions

Combine the flours, baking powder, cornmeal, brown sugar, spices, and salt in a large mixing bowl. Stir together the dry ingredients with a whisk.
Make a well in the middle and add the pumpkin, agave nectar, vanilla, milk, beer, and lemon zest. Mix until just combined.
Preheat your pans at medium heat. Rub some margarine on one of the pans and melt the rest in the other. Pour melted margarine into the pancake batter and stir until combined.
Pour about ¼ cup of batter (or any size you’d like) onto each pan. Flip when bubbles start to form and hold their shape. All pancake batters cook a bit differently, so feel free to check the underside of your pancakes while they cook so you can brown them to your liking. Repeat until all the batter is gone.

pumpkin-beer-pancakes

In other news, Cheers to Vegan Sweets is starting to ship out this week! If you ordered a signed copy from me, or pre-ordered on Amazon, you will be getting your book very soon. There is also an upcoming opportunity to win a copy, and a book party in Chicago next weekend…read on!

Cheers to Vegan Sweets

Want to win a copy of Cheers to Vegan Sweets?

Join me for a Twitter chat through @QuarrySpoonBlog on Tuesday, 10/15 at 1 p.m. EDT. Follow the conversation by searching #spoonchat, and ask all of your cooking and baking questions! The #spoonchat will last one hour and one participant will leave with a brand new copy Cheers to Vegan Sweets*.

*Well, you’ll get it in the mail a few days later.

quarry-spoon

Come to the book party!

If you’ll be in Chicago on October 19th, come to a book release party at Upton’s Breakroom at 2pm! Have lunch at the cafe (check out the menu…you can’t go wrong with Chicago-style Italian Seitan sandwich or Bacon Mac!) then come sample some desserts and get your very own autographed copy of Cheers to Vegan Sweets! RSVP on the Facebook event page. See you there!

uptons-breakroom