Twisted Korean Doughnuts (Kkwabaegi)


INGREDIENTS:

2 tablespoons butter or approximately 30 grams
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 packet of dry yeast (about 2¼ teaspoons: 7 grams)
3 cups all purpose flour for doughnuts, plus 2 tablespoons for dusting
corn oil for frying
½ teaspoon cinnamon powder
plus 3 tablespoons white sugar (for coating)

INSTRUCTIONS:

MAKE THE COATING

Add 2-3 tbsp sugar and 1/2 tsp cinnamon powder to a brown paper bag. Shake to mix well. Set aside.

MAKE THE DOUGH

1. Microwave butter for 30 seconds or until fully melted. In a bowl, pour the melted butter and add milk, sugar, and salt. Mix well until everything is well dissolved. Crack an egg in the bowl and mix well but not do not over beat the egg. Add the yeast and stir. Leave it for 5 minutes.

2. In a separate large bowl, add flour and the yeast mixture. Mix them well with a wooden spoon. Use your hands to knead the dough for a few minutes, and shape it into a big round dough. Cover with plastic wrap.

3. Let the dough rise until it doubles in size, about 1 hour to 1½ hours depending on the weather and humidity.

4. Punch the dough until the gas deflates and knead for a few minutes until it’s soft and smooth. Again, cover with plastic wrap and let it sit for 30 minutes to 1 hour until it doubles in size once more.

ROLL THE DOUGH

1. Once doubled in size, knead the dough for a few minutes. Dust your working surface with 2 tbsp flour. Divide the dough into 16 equal pieces.

2. Take one piece of dough and roll it out like a rope, about 10 inches long and ½ inch in diameter. Sprinkle some flour on the area you’re working in if it gets sticky. When you roll out the dough, move one hand upward and the other downward so that the rope is twisted in between your hands as you roll it.

3. Take the dough off the board, hold it aloft, and bring the ends together. You'll notice the dough will twist itself because of the tension. It is ideal for a Kkwabaegi to have 3-4 twists, but you can always add some more twist if you like. Don't forget to pinch both ends so as not to deform the dough when cooking.

4. Set aside the twisted dough. Repeat the process with the rest of the pieces of dough.

5. Let the doughnuts expand for about 30 minutes, flipping the doughnut over every 15 minutes so the other side won't get flat.

FRY THE DOUGHNUTS

1. Heat oil in a skillet, about 4 inches over medium high heat, until the temperature reaches 350 degrees F or 180 degrees C. Lower the heat to medium heat, then gently put each doughnut into the hot oil using your hands. Add as many pieces to the skillet (I fried 3 at a time).

2. Cook for about 5 minutes. Always watch while frying. Occasionally flip them over with tongs. The doughnuts should be crunchy outside and are evenly golden brown and fluffy inside.

3. Strain the cooked doughnuts using the sieve. Put them in the brown paper bag with sugar-cinnamon mixture. Shake the bag few times until they are evenly coated while the doughnuts are still warm.

4. Serve and enjoy with family and friends!

NOTE:
Leftovers can be put in freezer for up to 1 month. When ready to eat, just thaw at room temperature for 5 or 10 minutes before serving.

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