I have hosted many a Halloween party. I know every game inside out. We’ve done it all. Spooky cupcake decorating, pin the hat on the witch, wrapping small children up as mummies using cheap loo paper, bobbing for apples, ghoul discos… I won’t go on. They’re all fun. But really you may as well ditch the lot and just go straight for the doughnuts on a string. It is one of the funniest games I have ever had the joy to see my children play. Proper belly laughter. And if you manage to fill the house with the aroma of freshly fried doughnuts in the process then bonus points for everyone. If you go a step further and add a doughnut to a boozy freak shake for the adult guests then, well, a spooky high five to you.
These doughnuts are no rise, as in they do not have yeast in them. This means they absolutely must be eaten on the day they are fried, preferably whilst still warm (because, well, doughnuts are better whilst warm, no?) and take next to no time to make. I reckon the full batch were fried and served about 15 minutes after I got the scales out. They work very well with gluten free flour too.
Two years ago: Sweet potato and mushroom chilli, Toffee apples, Peach, tea and white chocolate traybake, Milk, tea and honey cupcakes, Chocolate lime pinata cake, Chorizo, kale and roast potato traybake, Quinoa veggie burgers, Thai turkey lettuce cups, Cucumber salad and Blackberry and pear crumble.
Three years ago: Lemon cheesecake, Ginger and Caramac version, Peanut butter pie with an Oreo crust, Double chocolate pecan pie and salted caramel traybake, a Traditional Christmas pud and Parkin for Bonfire night
Sick Slime Doughnuts
Makes 9 – 12 doughnuts
· 150mls double cream
· 300g white chocolate, finely chopped
· 1/2 tsp lime green gel food colouring
· 165mls milk
· 1 tsp vanilla extract
· 1 tsp lemon juice
· 280g self-raising flour (or Doves Farm Gluten Free flour), plus extra for rolling
· 75g castor sugar (plus an extra 100g for rolling the hot doughnuts in)
· 2 tsp baking powder
· 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
· Vegetable oil, for frying
· Icing tubes (I used Tesco ones) in white and black/dark brown, to make eyes
NB: The ganache stage is optional and only required if you are making doughnuts with the full sick slime. If you’re making them for playing doughnuts on a string then leave the ganache stage out.
Make the chocolate ganache drip icing by scalding the double cream over a medium heat in a saucepan until bubbles begin to form around the edges of the pan. Remove from the heat and leave to cool for 5 minutes before stirring through the white chocolate and green gel food colouring. Stir until all of the white chocolate has melted, then leave to cool at room temperature.
Make the doughnuts by stirring together the milk, vanilla and lemon juice. In a bowl measure the flour, sugar, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda, stir well and then add the liquid. Use a spoon to combine the batter then leave for 5 minutes. In the meantime fill a saucepan with oil to about 4cm deep and heat to 190C (you will need a thermometer to check this).
Flour the work surface well and tip the sticky dough out onto it. Dredge in more flour (be generous!) and roll out to 1cm thick. Cut a circle using a 6cm circular cutter and then use your finger to make a hole about 2cm wide in the middle. (The hole must be at least 2cm as it closes slightly upon frying). Lay on a plate next to each other. Pour the extra 100g castor sugar into a roasting tin.
When the oil is at temperature simply place 4 – 5 doughnuts carefully into the oil (ensure the pan is not crowded; they should not be touching) and fry for about 90 seconds, carefully turning the doughnuts with a heatproof slice halfway through. The doughnuts are ready when they are deep brown on both sides. Carefully remove from the saucepan and place in the sugar laden roasting tin. Flip the doughnuts over to ensure they’re covered on both sides.
The ganache is ready to use when it is thick, still pourable but not runny. Stick the doughnuts to a plate, hole facing you, with a little ganache, then leave to set. Use the rest of the ganache to pour/pipe through the hole as if it’s sick slime (you can gently reheat if it has set beyond the pouring stage) then ice eyes onto the top of the doughnut using the icing pens (or make them from fondant icing).
To play doughnuts on a string: Tie string around each doughnut and attach to a broom handle or stick. Ensure the doughnuts are at varying heights to accommodate all ages of player. Two adults hold the broom handle, every child must keep their hands behind their back and the first to eat a doughnut wins. For extra fun blindfold the players.
Photography: Scott Choucino http://scottchoucino.com/
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This recipe first appeared in Back to School magazine.
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