Ready In:

2 hrs           

Good For:



  • 560g plain flour 
  • 270g sour starter (active=ready to use)
  • 60g caster sugar
  • 30g brown sugar
  • 1tsp salt
  • 3/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 eggs- beaten
  • 15g dry yeast
  • 240ml warm milk
  • 85g melted butter
  • 300g melted ganache (see recipe book)
  • 300g custard- cold, whisked till smooth
  • 150g granulated sugar (salted caramel)
  • 50ml water (salted caramel)
  • 85ml cream (salted caramel)
  • 30g butter (salted caramel)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt or 1/3 tsp table salt (salted caramel)
  • 250g icing sugar
  • 50ml hot water
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla essence
  • juice 1/2 lemon
  • Pieces of chocolate
  • Handful cooked popcorn

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1

This recipe looks daunting but can be simplified very easily. If you’re making without a sourdough starter, just increase the flour by 120g.

If wanting to simplify, just omit the sour starter and after cooking, dip them in the syrup or roll them in sugar.

These doughnuts are super soft, have a complex yet balanced flavour profile and can be frozen for later enjoyment. 

Step 2

Mix the yeast with half the milk and leave to dissolve for 5mins.

If you have a mixer of good quality (with a dough hook) then go ahead and use that, otherwise in a large bowl add flour, both sugars, salt and nutmeg and mix together.


Step 3

Mix the yeast with the rest of the milk, eggs, and melted butter. Ensure the butter isn’t too hot, just warm.

Make a well in the middle of the four, and pour the yeast mixture along with sour starter into the well. Mix from the middle and gradually include the flour from the sides of the well.

When the mixture is too firm to mix further, empty onto a clean surface. Knead the dough for up to 10mins using flour when the dough gets too sticky.

The mixture should be soft, stretchy and a little sticky to touch. 

Step 4

Place the smooth and elasticated dough into a clean oiled bowl.

The bowl should be twice the size of the dough. Cover with oiled glad wrap and leave to ferment for 45mins or twice its original size. Oil the inside of the glad wrap so that when the dough hits it after fermenting, it won’t rip but pull away. 

Press the air out of the dough and break it into 80g pieces. Cover them with oiled glad wrap and leave to rest for 5mins. 

Roll each piece into a ball and place distance apart (they will almost double in size) onto trays lined with oiled greaseproof paper. Cover the tray with oiled glad wrap and leave to ferment until  1 1/2 times their size (45mins).

Step 5

To make the salted caramel, rinse a pot with cold water and add granulated sugar and water. Over medium heat, melt the sugar, increase heat and cook to a caramel colour.

Once golden add cream and remove from the heat. Stir cream through and return to stove, bring to a simmer and remove, add butter and salt, whisk through.

Stir some of the caramel through the popcorn and save the rest for the filling.

Pour the rest into a bowl to cool. 

Step 6

Once the dough has fermented, cut the greaseproof paper so that you can lift the paper and dough balls together and place them straight into a deep pan of oil or a deep fryer at 180°C.

Don’t cook too many at once. Grab each piece of paper with 2 doughnuts and gently place into the hot oil, remove the paper. 

After 1 min of cooking, turn them over and do this again every minute for 4mins (keep turning). Once the doughnuts stop bubbling on the side and are a deep golden brown colour, they’re cooked. Move them onto a cooling rack to cool. Using a slotted spoon is best. 

To be sure they’re cooked stick a metal skewer into the centre and it should be hot to touch if cooked. If not, cook some more.

Step 7

In a bowl, sift the icing sugar and mix water, lemon juice and vanilla together. Stir to a smooth consistency.

Dip each doughnut into this syrup, turn them a couple of times and return each to the cooling rack.

Using a small knife, cut a pocket into each doughnut.

Fill a piping bag with custard fitted with a small nozzle.

Pipe a little custard into the cavity of each doughnut, then spoon a tiny bit of salted caramel and then back to the custard, fill until the custard begins to over flow. Wipe off the excess. 

Step 8

Heat the ganache over a pan of simmered water until pouring consistency. Remove and cool for 5mins.

Dip each doughnut into the ganache, wipe off the excess and replace back to the cooling rack. 

Step 9

Pipe a little custard over the ganache to help hold the topping. Sprinkle each doughnut with chopped chocolate, salted caramel popcorn and a little salted caramel if you have some left. 

I put a couple of pieces of my chocolate fudge to be super indulgent. 

I’ll be posting my fudge recipe soon to the website so keep an eye out.  

Step 10

These doughnuts can be frozen in an airtight container for up to 2 months.

Doughnuts as with other sweet dough recipes will have to be eaten within 24hrs of making them as they harden and dry after that. 

If you make the recipe why not share to #familykitchenwithmark

Happy cooking. 

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