Mallory Staley, Pastry Chef at 9 Restaurant in New York City, makes a savory pumpkin cake doughnut, instead of traditional yeast ones because it "provides a better texure and I feel like it's not as fatty — even though I know that's silly to say." Her doughnuts are inspired by the season; she does a blueberry cake doughnut with a milkshake on the side during the warmer months.
These spiced treats are fast and easy to make at home. If you need advice along the way, check out this slideshow of the doughnut-making process for some helpful tips and visuals. Enjoy! — Yasmin Fahr
Heat the oil to 325 degrees. Meanwhile, in a mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients (except for the sugar) with your hands. In a separate bowl, combine all the liquids with the puree and sugar and whisk together. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry with your hands, using them as a spatula.
Roll out the dough on a floured surface or spray it with oil and place between 2 pieces of parchment paper and roll out to ½ -inch thick. You can use different shapes to cut the dough however you like (like leaf cutters for the fall, heart shapes for Valentine's day, etc.,); it doesn't have to be a traditional doughnut shape. If you do use doughnut shapes, then keep the middle holes and fry those as well. *If the dough gets a little sticky, you can dip your cutter into some flour to help it keep its shape.)
Fry the doughnuts in the oil for about 45 seconds on each side or until golden brown. Carefully remove and drain on a paper towel to remove excess oil.
Serve as is, or garnish with powdered sugar, cinnamon sugar or a simple pumpkin glaze: whisk powdered sugar and pumpkin puree together in a bowl, then add a splash of water until you've reached a thick consistency that is still pourable. Dip the pumpkins in the glaze and serve with some white chocolate if desired (piped out onto the pumpkin doughnuts).