October 9, 2012

Baked Pumpkin Doughnut Holes

Oh, we love fall around here!  The trees are in all their splendor, and the chill in the air seems to beckon us to keep the oven on.  What better thing to bake right now than pumpkin doughnuts?  My daughter actually made these.  She wanted to bake something for me as a surprise, which was very thoughtful, but I encouraged her to let me in on her secret.  I let her do everything on her own, but I love being able to help if need be.  It's fun to stand back and watch your kids doing something they love, to offer tips when necessary.......and to enjoy the fruit of their labor!  These were so yummy!  They're the perfect size to fill gift bags too!

1-3/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/3 cup canola or olive oil
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 cup milk (low fat is fine)

Cinnamon-Sugar Coating

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1-1/2 tablespoons cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Spray a 24-cup mini muffin tin with cooking spray and set aside.  In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour through cloves.  In another large bowl, whisk together the oil, brown sugar, egg, vanilla, pumpkin and milk until smooth.  Add dry ingredients to pumpkin mixture and mix just until combined.  Fill muffin cups and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick comes out clean.  As the doughnuts are baking, melt the butter in a small bowl.  Combine sugar and cinnamon in another bowl.  Remove doughnuts from oven and cool for 2 minutes.  Dip each doughnut hole in melted butter, then roll in cinnamon sugar.  (If you're making these as gifts, leave them plain and dip in butter/sugar mixture shortly before you give them away.  The sugar tends to "melt" or dissolve by the next day-still delicious, but the sugar coating becomes more of a sticky glaze.)

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