Happy Fourth of July!

Independence Day Doughnuts

Happy Independence Day!

The Fourth of July commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776 and is celebrated across the USA with fireworks parades and carnivals. So to mark this occasion I’ve gone for the most American recipe I can think of – doughnuts! I added some ‘fireworks’ to these too by adding some popping candy to the glaze.

I used Paul Hollywood’s recipe from BBC Food as a base for my doughnuts.


  • 250g/9oz strong white flour, plus extra for flouring
  • 25g/1oz caster sugar
  • 20g/¾oz unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 free-range egg
  • 7g instant yeast
  • 5g salt
  • 75ml/2½fl oz warm milk
  • sunflower oil, for deep fat frying


  1. Place all the ingredients into a large bowl (except the sunflower oil) with three tablespoons of water.
  2. Stir with your hands to make a dough.
  3. Gradually add another another tablespoon of water and massage in the bowl for four minutes.
  4. Tip the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead well for 10 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic.
  5. Place into a bowl and leave to rise for 40 minutes, covered with a damp tea towel.
  6. Tip the dough out, again onto a very lightly floured surface.
  7. Divide the dough in half.
  8. With a floured rolling pin, roll out the dough quite thinly to about 1cm/½in thick. Cut into rounds using an 8cm/3¼in straight sided round cutter, then use a 2cm/¾in cutter to cut holes out of the middle.
  9. Spin each doughnut on your index finger to expand the hole.
  10. You should be able to cut out about eight doughnuts from this dough. Place all circles onto an oiled baking tray, loosely cover with cling film, not allowing it to touch the top of the doughnuts and leave to rise for 30 minutes.
  11. Preheat a deep fat fryer, filled with sunflower oil to 180C/350F (Caution: hot oil can be dangerous; do not leave unattended.)
  12. Drop each doughnut in separately, cooking each side for about a minute or until golden-brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and place onto a plate lined with kitchen towel to soak up the excess oil.
  13. Leave to cool.


For the glaze I split 200g of icing sugar into 2 bowls and added water until the glaze was the consistency of a thick paste. I then added a little red gel food colouring to one of the bowls.

For my ‘firework’ doughnuts I covered first with white icing and then drew lines of red by letting the icing drip off the spoon as I moved across the doughnuts. Simple sprinkle with some popping candy and leave to set. For a more traditional look just brush on the white icing (below).

They are also delicious eaten warm with caster sugar and cinnamon.

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