During the summer time when the kids are home, I am amazed at how much food they can eat! In addition to having plenty of fruits and vegetables on hand for them to munch on, I also try to have some special treats for them. However, buying treats at the store can really wreck your grocery budget.
During the Depression in the 1930’s, my great-grandmother made her five children a treat called “doughnut balls”. The doughnuts were easy to make and were inexpensive. They also filled up her 5 children!
Here is my great-grandmother’s recipe!
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons of oil
1 1/2 cup of flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon baking powder
One can of shortening
10 x sugar(optional)
In a very large pot, melt and heat the shortening. After the shortening is melted, it should fill at least 1/2 of the pot.
Mix together sugar, milk,and the egg. Add the oil. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, salt, baking powder, and nutmeg. Stir until smooth, but do not over-mix the batter.
I have to say that when I make this recipe for our large family, I actually triple the recipe! If you have a small family, you may want to keep the recipe as is.
When you start to see small bubbles form in the oil, test a small piece of batter to see that the oil is warm enough. The batter should turn a light brown in a few minutes. Make sure to turn the doughnut over to get all sides of the batter evenly browned.
When the oil is heated to the right temperature, drop rounded teaspoon fulls of batter into the pot. I typically brown 6 pieces of batter at a time, although you might need to make adjustments based upon the size of your pot.
After all sides of the doughnut are lightly browned, take the doughnuts out of the pot using a slotted spoon. Drain the doughnuts on a plate lined with several layers of paper towels. This should blot up the excess oil.
If desired, you can cover the doughnuts in powdered(10x) sugar. Fill a Ziploc baggie with the sugar. While the doughnuts are still slightly warm(not too warm or the sugar will just be absorbed), put them into the Ziploc baggie. Make sure the baggie is shut tightly and shake until all sides of the doughnut are coated. This is a fun activity for younger children as it keeps them busy and makes them feel important!
When the doughnuts have cooled, I store them in an airtight container.