The Poor-Man’s Donuts: Deformed, but Delicious!

My budget has quickly depleted to dangerously low levels. With $400 out for rent, I’m living off of a number that is embarrassingly low. Dangerously low.

Last night my beautiful friend Helen came over after each of our Good Friday services (we go to different churches). We had plans to go to Soda & Swine (post on them soon!), but she was not feeling much like being a round a lot of people. This is a rare request, being a person who typically loves and purposefully surrounds herself with people. She instead pitched the idea of coming over to my empty apartment and offered to pay for Thai food. She’s been sick and I was exhausted so we really just ended up passing out. This morning, I woke up insanely hungry. I picked up my dying phone and scrolled through instagram. I follow a user called: “youstayhungrysd,” and they had shared a post on dunkin’ donuts (disclaimer: they rarely post on such a franchise. Their posts are typically on local yummies in San Diego). Well, these donuts looked BOMB. Just see for yourself…

Dunkin' Donuts never looked so good
Dunkin’ Donuts never looked so good

“Helen, I want donuts,” I said as we both lay on our claimed couches.

“I know this really great place downtown,” she said, “but you should just make some dude. Do you have milk?”
“Do you have sugar, eggs, flour?”
“Then dude just make them!”

She knew about my budget. She was trying to help me out. As she passed out again into her light snoring sleep, I looked up a recipe. Hmmm, but I don’t have buttermilk. So I searched for buttermilk substitutes. From thin air I gathered some motivation. I launched up from the couch and began my endeavor into uncharted cooking territory for myself. While Helen showered, I proceeded to destroy my kitchen.

You can find some recipes for donuts online but these are the poor man’s donuts because I didn’t have buttermilk and I had to be super ghetto.

So here it is.

What you need:

  •  1/2 cup milk
  • less than 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 3 Tbsp. melted butter
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups (really whatever oil you got though the recipe calls for vegetable oil)
  • A completely subjective blend of sugar, cinnamon, powdered sugar etc for coating

How you make it:

Heat the 2 cups of oil in a frying pan

Meanwhile, warm up 1/4 cup milk in the microwave (maybe 15 seconds). Squeeze some lemon juice to denature it and make it bitter. Let it sit while you move on to the following steps.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.

In a separate bowl, combine the other 1/4 cup of milk with the sugar and butter.

Combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients. Just combine them. Don’t go all ninja on it. It can be flaky and clumpy – similar texture to biscuits.

When the oil gets to 350 degrees (really I didn’t measure mine… i just went, “ehh, it’s been heating long enough!”), then roll up the dough into small balls (or if you’re like me, the mixture will somehow end up super gooey and require you to throw extra flour in it and on your hands and then just sort of plop clumps of it into the oil.

With a fork or tongs, flip the balls over when they’ve gotten golden-brown. As they finish frying, place them on a pan lined with thick paper towels to catch the oil. Continue this process till you’re out of dough. Roll the ghetto donuts in your subjective sugary mixture, and voila. The Poor-Man’s Donuts. Nnnnnnnnnyou’re welcome.

Now have your friend be a spaz, and make an ugly picture while eating one of your deformed, but delicious donuts.

Meet Helen.
Meet Helen.

Really, Helen is a beautiful person so here’s a picture of us at the beach!


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