Sunday, July 31, 2011

Elsie Pondrom's Homemade Donuts

The first time I sank my teeth into these babies, I thought I died and went to heaven. I spent a lot of time at my best friend Susan’s house when I was younger after my mom died. Probably before that too. I’m sure Susan’s mom was sick of me, but was always gracious and kind—never refusing Susan’s request to have me over. I’m surprised I didn’t move in.

One morning Susan’s mom, Elsie—although I always called her Mrs. Pondrom, (up until a few years ago). Anyway, one morning Elsie made homemade donuts. I tried to be polite and eat just a few, but I don’t know how many I ate. As many as I was allowed. With four other kids in the family, I don’t know how many we each could have, but I ate them all. Then dreamed about them. Hoped I’d be over again when donuts were made. They stayed with me. It seemed too difficult to make even though I was attempting to prepare dinner at home fro my dad and little sister.

The first time I remember making the donuts, I was pregnant with my first born. I was watching my older sister’s two kids, Jason and Vicki. I can’t remember how old they were—let’s see if I do the math—I’d say Jason was around 11 and Vicki about 5. At that time their mom wasn’t allowing them to have sugary stuff or junk food. I decided to make them donuts. Dough fried in oil and then coated in powdered sugar. I never saw two kids gobble down donuts so fast. I wondered if I had been feeding them enough regular food. I couldn’t fry those donuts fast enough. Afterwards I cringed to think I ruined their pure sugarless bodies, although I suspect it wasn’t quite pure. Watching them devour those donuts made me happy though. I knew they were feeling the same thing I did when I bit into my first doughy goodness.

I’ve made donuts for my own kids throughout the years. Whenever friends would spend the night, the request would be, “Mom, will you make homemade donuts?”

When my stepdaugther and her daughter Logan moved in, I found out that Logan loves donuts, so for her birthday I had to make her homemade donuts. Here’s the look on her face as she sank her teeth into the first bite and it’s pretty much the look everyone has as they experience this delight. Logan had goggles on while she powder-sugared the donuts so as not to get sugar in her eyes, I guess.

And the donut coma look. Here’s Elsie Pondrom’s Homemade Donuts

Pillsbury Biscuits—the cheapest ones. They usually come in a 4 pack, blue wrapping. And depending on how many you’re feeding will depend on how many packages to use. I’d say at least two… that’ll make 20 donuts and 20 donut holes. It sounds like a lot, but they’ll go quick. Although I guess if you’re only making them for yourself or one other person, one package would do the trick. Because it can be messy, I usually make them for a group.

Heat up a skillet of vegetable oil, at least an inch and a half or two inches deep. Your oil is hot enough when you drop in a donut hole and it sizzles around the dough. If it stays flat, wait until it begins to sizzle before adding any more dough.

While the oil is heating up, open the package and lay out the biscuit dough. Find a cap of some sort to make a hole in the middle by twisting it around until the hole comes out. Kids like to do this.

When the oil is ready, drop in enough to fill the pan and wait until golden brown before turning. When golden brown on the other side, take out and let cool slightly on a paper towel. You might want to have this ready too—a plate covered with paper towels and a bowl of powdered sugar, and another plate to put the finished powered donuts on.

When the donut is slightly cool, drop in powdered sugar and coat thoroughly. Kids like to do this too, but be prepared for a mess—both in your kitchen and all over the clothes. After coated, put on plate. Or if you can’t wait, bite into the warmed fried goodness of Elsie’s donuts.

And be prepared to get powdered sugar all over you too—I suggest eating over a table with your face over your plate. That and a nice cold glass of milk will put you into a good donut coma.

A little tip on the donut holes. I try and fry these together, or as many as I can handle. You want to flip these around constantly because once they get brown on one side and if it’s still raw on the other, they are hard to turn over. By flipping them around, they’re more apt to turn over. Not sure if that makes sense.

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