Brittany’s Baking Stories: Don’t Give Up

March: Cake Doughnuts with Coffee Glaze

I resisted the urge to make a pun with the title. It will probably appear in this post. I have been craving cake doughnuts for a while and I haven’t found a place near me that makes them. So these doughnuts satisfied my craving and were pretty simple to make. I’ll probably make them again. 

Ingredients for cake doughnuts and three stainless steel bowls
Ingredients for the cake doughnuts

This is the first time I’ve had to redo something. While creaming the butter, sugar, vanilla, and applesauce, I realized something wasn’t quite right. I’d seen enough baking shows to know when a cream had split. This butter mixture was no good.

Split butter, sugar, vanilla, and applesauce in stainless steel bowl with the mixer handles in the image. Butter looks chunky like curdles and applesauce is separated from the mix instead of being blended in
Split butter, sugar, and vanilla. No bueno.

I was hesitant to redo it because I wasn’t sure if it was just the applesauce and I needed more vanilla extract for my glaze. If I redid this mix, I wouldn’t have any extract for my glaze. But after a few moments of going back and forth, thoughts of throwing everything out, and Google confirmations, I decided to remake the butter, sugar, vanilla, and applesauce mixture (and naturally forgot to take a picture). 

I believe I had left my butter out too long so it was too warm and that caused the mix to split. But my fridge is super cold so softening the butter meant using the microwave. I tried the soften feature on my microwave, but it didn’t fully get the job done. I tossed it in the microwave for 30 seconds and it was mashable. The new mix looked a lot better and I moved quickly so that the butter wouldn’t melt. 

Cake doughnut mix in a red bowl. The dough is tan with rainbow sprinkles throughout.
Cake doughnut sticky dough

The doughnut mix ended up being stickier than I imagined so it was a bit messy filling the pans, but I got it done.

Doughnut pan filled with raw dough
Before the oven!
Doughnut pan filled with raw dough
Yep, I made a dozen!

And they turned out pretty good. The bottoms looked better so I just flipped them over.

Baked golden brown doughnuts with rainbow sprinkles baked in the dough
A cool dozen.

I did turn some back over after using the coffee glaze on six of the doughnuts, but the glaze didn’t thicken. I used the internet’s substitute for vanilla extract: vanilla creamer. It made my doughnuts a little soggy, but the next morning they still tasted pretty good.

Some of the doughnuts are flipped over showing the golden brown side, the others showing the less golden brown top.
The glazed doughnuts.

The overall taste was good. It kind of tasted like vanilla Funfetti, but they weren’t overly sweet. And even though the dough was thick, they were light.

And this month’s writing tip is to revise! Revision is a writer’s best friend. Sometimes we feel like a story is done, but we could add a little more to it. Like, the story is good, but how do we make it better? It’s definitely a combination of going with your gut and studying the craft. If I hadn’t watched all those baking shows, who knows how the doughnuts would have turned out? From reading, taking classes, following storytelling in other formats (movies, TV shows), you can learn about writing and how to improve your own. And even if you get stuck, donut give up! (Told you I’d get the pun in.)

As always, you find this recipe in Black Girl Baking by Jerrelle Guy.

Until next month, happy baking and happy writing!

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