Twisted Donut Recipe (香软麻花)

Twisted donuts are popular street food in Northern China. They are crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. 

INGREDIENTS (makes 6 donuts)

  • 2/3 cup (160g) of whole milk
  • 2 tsp (6g) of yeast
  • 2.5 tbsp (55g) of honey
  • 1/2 tsp (3g) of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 2.5 cups (380g) of bread flour
  • 3 tbsp of unsalted softened butter

INSTRUCTIONS

The recipe is super simple. You will need 2/3 cups of lukewarm milk. I microwave the cold milk for 20 seconds. Mix the milk with 2 tsp of yeast. It takes about 5 minutes to bloom.

Crack in an egg, and add the honey and salt. Stir well. Make sure the honey is dissolved. Then add the bread flour. Give it a rough mix. Then knead it until a rough dough.

I will let my KitchenAid run on medium speed for a couple of minutes or until a rough dough forms. Add the unsalted and softened butter.

Keep running on medium speed for 10 minutes. It will be an oily mess in the beginning. I like to use a spatula to help the hook grab the dough. Once most of the butter is absorbed, let the machine run for the rest of the time or until the dough is smooth

Shape it into a round ball. Cover and let it proof for 1.5 hours or until doubled in size.

Punch to deflate. Then divide the dough into 12 even pieces. Roll each piece into a long strip – about 20 inches. Try to deflate as many air bubbles as you are rolling so your donut won’t have big pockets. 

Match 2 strips together. Use both of your hands to twist them in opposite directions. Bring two ends together, and your donut will braid naturally. Pinch and tuck the end under. That looks lovely. 

Put it on a floured tray to prevent stickiness. Cover them and let them rise for another 30 minutes. 

My donut has 1.5 times the size. They look lovely. When you deep fry them, always follow the order that you shaped them so the last one proof for the same amount of time.

Bring the oil to 360 F. Carefully pick up the donut and try not to ruin the shape. Deep fry the donut in batches. They need a couple of minutes per side. Once they are golden brown, you can take them out. 

You can also bake the dough in a 400F oven for 16-18 minutes. However, the baked version will be a bit dry on the outside, so you have to brush some butter to catch the cinnamon sugar if you will coat it that way. Also, the texture is more like bread instead of a donut. 

Cinnamon sugar is my favorite coating because it is easy, and I am obsessed with the cinnamon aroma. Twisted donut is one of those things that every time I say I am not going to eat them, I can never help myself. 

Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Ingredients

For the dough (makes 6 donuts)

  • 2/3 cup 160g of whole milk
  • 2 tsp 6g of yeast
  • 2.5 tbsp 55g of honey
  • 1/2 tsp 3g of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 2.5 cups 380g of bread flour
  • 3 tbsp of unsalted softened butter

Instructions

  • Microwave the cold milk for 20 seconds or until lukewarm. Mix the yeast with the milk and give it 5 minutes to bloom.
  • Add egg, honey, and salt and stir well. Add the bread flour and knead until a rough dough.
  • Knead the softened butter into the dough for ten minutes or until the dough is smooth and non-stick.
  • Shape the dough into a round ball. Cover and let it proof for 1.5 hours or until doubled in size.
  • Punch the dough to deflate, then divide it into 12 even pieces.
  • Roll each piece into a 20 inches long strip. Try to deflate the air bubbles as you roll so your donut won’t have big pockets.
  • Use both of your hands to twist two strips in opposite directions. Bring two ends together, and your donut will braid naturally. Next, pinch the ends and tuck them under.
  • Put the donuts on a floured tray; cover them, and let them rise for another 30 minutes or until 1.5 times the size.
  • Bring the oil to 360 F. Carefully pick up the donut and deep fry them in batches for a couple of minutes per side. Once they are golden brown, you can take them out. When you deep fry them, always follow the order that you shaped them so the last one proof for the same amount of time.
  • You can also bake the dough in a 400F oven for 16-18 minutes. The baked version will be a bit dry on the outside, and the texture is more like bread than a donut.

Video

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