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Help! Why are my homemade "Craft" doughnuts bad?

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Help! Why are my homemade "Craft" doughnuts bad?

New Havener | Feb 1, 2006 03:41 PM

I wonder if anyone here can help me with my crummy (excuse the pun) homemade doughnuts.

I made them last night using a recipe from Karen DeMasco, the pastry chef at Craft in NYC. I've had the doughnuts (at the restaurant) and they're amazing, so I know the recipe's good. Mine, however, were pretty bad - oily, with a sort of crunchy outer layer and too dry inside. I know I overcooked the first batch, but then I started experimenting with cooking times on subsequent batches, and even the ones that I took out when they were just golden had a chalky quality to them - whereas DeMasco's doughnuts at Craft have a perfectly moist internal texture and a delicately crisp outer layer.

I guess my problem is that I don't know what the important variables are when you're making a deep-fried pastry like this - could my oil have been too hot (I fried them at 375 degrees)? Not hot enough? Also - the dough was incredibly sticky and I had to use a lot of flour to be able to roll it out and get the uncooked dough off of the slab - did I maybe use too much? What's the ideal stickiness level for uncooked doughnut dough?

Any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated. I was so disappointed when I bit into the first hot doughtnut...

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