Cinnamon Sugar Doughnut Holes with Apple Compote

My friend Lee Kushnir sent this to me a while ago. I can’t believe it took me so long to try it. The recipe makes about 24 doughnut holes which turns out not to be enough because they are so good out of the pot that they don’t make it to the table. Don’t skip the apple brandy or liqueur in the apple compote, it gives it a nice flavor that is hard to pinpoint but warms and spices the dish. Thanks Lee!

1 stick unsalted butter or margarine
1/4 cup superfine sugar
1/2 cup cold water
Pinch kosher salt
1 cup flour
4 medium eggs
3/4 gallon peanut or vegetable oil, for deep-frying
1 cup superfine sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1 tablespoon unsalted butter or margarine
6 large Golden Delicious apples
2 tablespoons Apple Brandy, Brandy or Apple liqueur
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup superfine sugar
1 vanilla bean, split in half and scraped
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Prepare cinnamon sugar by combining sugar and cinnamon in a flat, rimmed dish and mix well with a fork.
Prepare dough by combining butter, sugar, salt and water in a medium saucepan and set over high heat. Bring to a boil then remove from heat and dump in the flour all at once. Using a wooden spoon stir well until the mixture comes together as a ball. Add eggs, 1 at a time, ensuring each is fully incorporated before adding the next (the dough should be nice and glossy when finished).

To fry, heat oil in a heavy based pot (like a Dutch oven) to 365 degrees F. Using a 2-inch ice cream scoop, carefully drop a few balls at a time into the oil. Work in batches so as to not overcrowd the pot. Cook until golden and puffy – about 6 minutes. Use a mesh strainer or slotted metal spoon to remove from oil and place directly onto dish of cinnamon sugar. Roll around to coat evenly all over. Serve doughnuts warm with apple compote.


Peel apples, remove core and cut into a small 1/2 inch cubes. Set a large sauté pan over high heat and add butter and apple cubes. Sauté for 2-3 minutes so you get a little color on the apple. Remove pan from heat and carefully add Apple Brandy (be careful as it may flare up if you are using an open gas flame).
Return the pan to the heat and add remaining ingredients. Cook for 8-10 minutes until apples are very tender. Remove from heat and refrigerate for up to 3 days if not using immediately. Serve warm or room temperature with cinnamon sugared doughnuts

4 thoughts on “Cinnamon Sugar Doughnut Holes with Apple Compote

  1. I’m hoping to try making donuts for the first time this Chanukah, and have seen lots of different recipes – this seems easiest – but I have a question how is this different from the other recipes I’ve seen which call for yeast? Thanks!

  2. This is more like a cake batter that is fried up as a doughnut. A yeast dough is like a bread dough. Both types come out well.

  3. I made these this morning, and while they were certainly delicious I have some questions/issues. Recipe says mixture will come together as a “ball”. Actually, although it does come together, it really does stay quite loos and not a all a “dough” ball as is suggested. Furthermore, adding the eggs only loosens it up even further and it becomes more like a pancake batter than a dough. Which brings me to my next issue, using the recommended cookie scooper to drop the batter into the oil is really quite a task, since the batter is so liquidy, it is so hard to “drop” it into the oil and keep its shape, and also hard not to have “strings” of batter floating and, therefore, burning in the hot oil. (I even added an extra half cup of flour to the batter). Is it possible that the flour measurement in this recipe is incorrect?

    • I made these last year and the recipe worked. I refrigerated some of the batter/dough to get it to thicken up a bit. I also had a few strands in the oil but thats normal, they crisp up well and are nice and flaky.

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