We're Jamming: How to Make the Perfect Hanukkah Doughnut

There’s a little pastry chef hiding inside each of us, just waiting for the right recipe to come along. Here is a step-by-step guide to making perfect sufganiyot.

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The standard jelly donut, with berry-flavored jam.
The standard jelly donut, with berry-flavored jam.Credit: Limor Laniado Tiroche

Every year, the competition for the “most original sufganiya” seems to get more brutal. What hasn’t been used as a filling by now? We’ve seen fillings made with alcohol, all sorts of crèmes, even salty caramel. There are gluten-free and vegan versions. And all this time, the traditional jelly-filled Hanukkah doughnut has had to take a back seat and wait to be restored to its former glory. If you feel like you’ve had your fill of boutique sufganiyot and are nostalgic for the good old home-made sufganiyot of a simpler time, this recipe is for you. With a little desire and a little yeast, you can easily make airy, jam-filled sufganiyot that will transport you back to childhood. Just follow the recipe from the Lehem Tati bakery, and you can’t go wrong.

Old-fashioned sufganiot

280 gr white flour

250 gr bread flour

30 gr fresh yeast

5 gr baking powder

65 gr sugar

5 gr salt

50 gr butter

210 gr milk

20 gr brandy

1 whole egg

1 egg yolk

20 gr water

1 vanilla bean or 1 tsp high-quality vanilla extract

zest of 1/4 lemon

zest of 1/4 orange

100 gr high-quality preserves for the filling

1. Place the flours, yeast, baking powder and sugar in a mixer with a dough hook and mix lightly for about 30 seconds.

2. Add the remaining ingredients and knead slowly for 5 minutes and then at medium speed for another five minutes until a smooth dough is obtained. Roll the dough into a large ball and cover with a damp kitchen towel.

3. Let rise for an hour and a half at room temperature. Divide the dough into 50-gram pieces and roll each one into a ball.

4. Place the balls of dough on a greased baking sheet and let rise for another 30-45 minutes.

5.Deep-fry the dough balls in hot oil (170 degrees Celsius) for 2 minutes on each side.

6. Remove the fried dough balls from the oil and let rest on paper towels for 5 minutes.

7. Insert the jam using a pastry bag or syringe. You can sprinkle powdered sugar on top if you like.