Since it is National Donut Day, I figure it would be fitting to post my recipe for coconut glazed ube donuts. I’m always looking for dessert ideas inspired by Asian ingredients and this one seemed to be a no-brainer. When I was in the Philippines, it seemed like purple sweet potatoes, or ube, popped up everywhere. There were ube cakes and cupcakes, ice-cream, bread, even chocolate bars with ube. Although I didn’t spend enough time in Manila to sample many of these treats, it did give me the idea to devise this recipe.
I have been a bit of donut kick after visiting Federal Donuts in Philadelphia. I figured it was time to try out this variation of a spud nut or potato donut. I also adapted a basic glaze recipe to incorporate coconut. I was pleased with the initial result, but should you have left-overs, be careful with storing these donuts as the glaze tends to get soggy if it is too warm or humid. I recommend storing these in the refrigerator. I still have a notebook full of donut ideas and will have to slowly whittle it down. Vietnamese coffee, Thai ice-tea, pandanus, tamarind, lychee and white chocolate, matcha green tea, chestnut, rose petal, and cardamom. What do you think?
Coconut Glazed Ube Donuts
3/4 frozen purple sweet potatoes
2 1/2 cups flour, plus flour for dusting work surfaces
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon grated nutmeg
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup coconut milk
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
canola oil, or other neutral oil for frying
For the glaze:
1/4 cup coconut milk’
2 cups powdered sugar
1. Slice the thawed purple yam into 1-inch pieces, then cook in boiling water for 10 minutes until fully cooked. Drain and mash into a smooth paste and allow to cool.
2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg and set aside.
3. In a stand mixer, beat the eggs, add the sugar, coconut milk, and melted butter and mix until smooth. Slowly begin adding the dry ingredients until sticky dough forms.
4. Allow the dough to rest for at least 10 minutes. This will make it much easier to work with.
5. Heat oil to 370 degrees.
6. While oil is heating, transfer dough to a large flat work surface that is lightly floured. Roll the dough out to a 10 inch round that is about 1/2 inch high. Don’t worry about making a perfect circle. Cut each donut out using a donut cutter and place on a floured tray until ready to fry. If you have extra dough scraps, combine them together again and roll back out. This dough does tend to be a bit sticky and you may find that you have to add more flour. This really depends on the moisture in the potatoes as well as the humidity.
7. Working in batches, fry the donuts and donut holes until they are evenly browned. This usually takes 3-4 minutes. Be sure not to crowd the oil as you want to maintain an even 370 degrees to insure that your donuts come out crisp and not soggy.
8. Remove your donuts from the oil and place on baking racks to allow them to cool.
9. While the donuts are cooling, mix your powdered sugar with the remaining coconut milk until it forms a smooth glaze.
10. Dip each donut in the glaze while the donuts are still luke warm.