We have a family tradition of making these donut holes on special occasions. It started when my best friend Mishawn made them for us years and years ago. Her family always made them for special holidays (Christmas- I think) and she wanted us to enjoy them as well. We were hooked. We got out own pan and started making them years ago and haven’t looked back. Our kids often tell people about them because they are a unique dessert and nobody knows how to pronounce them. We most often make them as part of a big breakfast feast- but a few times we have had them as an after-dinner dessert. They can be served with syrup, powdered sugar or even jam. Some people like them with apple sauce. I like a sprinkle of fresh lemon and the powdered sugar- like what I’ve had on dutch-baby pancakes. If you decide to make these, you will need a special cast iron, Aebleskiver pan (see photo and link below).
-3 cups flour
-2 Tbsp sugar
-1 tsp salt
-1/2 tsp soda (baking)
-2 Tbsp baking powder
-2 cups buttermilk
-vegetable or canola oil (for the cooking part)
*garnish with powdered sugar, maple syrup or anything you enjoy with pancakes like jelly. I like to keep it simple & squeeze some lemon juice an powdered sugar on mine. YUM!
Combine ingredients for the batter the night before (if possible). Heat pan on medium heat and fill each divot with oil. When hot add a small amount of batter to one divot. If it cooks and browns (and flips over) too quickly your oil is too hot- turn the heat down and wait a few minutes and start again. If it takes a long time to brown and doesn’t start to turn on it’s own as it cooks you may need to turn the heat up a little (or the dough won’t be cooked in the middle). Once you get the temp right just start filling the divots with the batter, flipping after about a minute or so, and set in a large bowl once they are done. Sprinkle with powdered sugar along the way. One batch feeds about 6 people.
Mishawn typically make two batches and uses two pans at a time when she make this for a crowd (about 16 of us at a Hume Lake cabin every summer). She has played around with a gluten-free version and it turned out great.
There are dozens of versions of this recipe. Be sure to do your own research if you get the pan and discover what recipe you like best. It will be fun and I truly don’t think you can go wrong! Some recipes don’t use the oil- opting for more of a muffin or pancake consistency and using wooden sticks to turn over gently. Some are stuffed with jam or other treats. I once saw a friend use the pan in the oven for cornbread cakes with little sausages put in the middle before baking. There are so many options available!
Also, HERE IS A LINK for the pan we have. The wooden handle is nice so that you don’t have to worry about it overheating or burning your hand. Have you had these and do you have a special way you make them?