Makes 12 donuts
2 tsp. dry yeast
¼ cup. milk, slightly warmed
1½ cups. potatoes, peeled, cooked soft, mashed fine, or put through a ricer
1 lrg. egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 TBSP. unsalted butter, room temp.
1¾ cup. all-purpose flour
¼ cup. granulated sugar
1 - - - lemon, zested
½ tsp. salt
3 cups. vegetable or canola oil, for frying
2 cups granulated sugar - can add cinnamon if you want
1. Mix the yeast and warm milk in a small container and set aside for 10 minutes or until you see small bubbles forming on the surface. In a medium bowl, combine the potatoes, egg, vanilla and butter
2. In a bowl of a standing mixer, using the dough hook, add the flour, sugar, salt and lemon zest and combine on low speed. Slowly pour in the milk with yeast.
3. Add the potato mixture and combine. Increase the speed and knead the dough for about 5-7 minutes until it starts to wrap lightly around the dough hook and come off the sides of the mixer bowl. Or turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead by hand for 7-10 minutes. The dough should be soft, but not sticky.
NOTE: If the dough is too sticky add another ¼ cup of flour, a tablespoon at a time, and continue kneading until dough is smooth and not sticky.
4. Transfer the dough into a large clean bowl, cover and let it rise in a warm, draft free place until double in bulk. It will take between 1 to 2 hours at 75-80 °F. It will take much longer in a cooler place.
5. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured, clean work surface. Lightly work the dough and divide into 12 equal portions, a scale can be very handy for this purpose. Take each dough portion and roll into a rope, then pinch the ends together for form a circle. Or, if you have a doughnut cutter, you can roll the dough out ⅓ - ¼ inch thickness and cut. Place the doughnuts on a parchment lined baking sheet that has been dusted with flour. Cover with a piece of plastic sprayed with cooking spray or a flour dusted kitchen towel. Let rise for 1 hour.
6. In a deep pan preheat the vegetable oil to 350 °F, using a thermometer really helps in the frying process. Once the oil has heated, gently drop in 3-4 donuts at a time and cook about 2 minutes on each side. They should be golden brown. Remove from oil onto a paper towel lined plate.
7. Quickly dip in the granulated sugar and enjoy! They are best served while warm.
NOTE: If you would like to have the doughnuts fresh in the morning, place the cut doughnuts in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning, remove from fridge and bring to room temperature, which takes about an hour, and then fry.