Quick custard doughnut (cheat) | Custard Donut | Ciambella rapida alla crema pasticcera

Photo of a 'cheat' custard doughnut made with white bread slices, filled with thick custard, egged, fried in butter and dusted with sugar.  Image also shows Gloriously Good Food Logo.

This is a very quick ‘cheat’ recipe for a custard “doughnut” (or French Toast extraordinaire!) I came up with as I had made too much very thick crema pasticcera (an egg custard used in Italian desserts, so generally much thicker than traditional English custard that is used for pouring) for another meal, which I hope to post about soon!

I had made the crema pasticcera very thick and left it to set in the fridge overnight, so you could ‘cut’ into it with a spoon or spreading knife, which makes it ideal for this particular recipe, as there is no risk of it oozing out as you cook your “doughnut”.

Tip: As an extra treat, I had actually mixed a load of white chocolate drops into the crema pasticcera while it was still hot, so it became a delicious, rich, chocolatey custard! As an alternative, this cheat “doughnut” also works very well with Nutella filling 🙂

This simple and quick cheat recipe takes about 5 minutes to make (once you have the custard – I’ll post a recipe soon, but any egg custard, made extra thick and left to set in the fridge overnight should work).

Tip: Use very fresh sliced white bread with a compact crumb. For a fluffier “doughnut”, use thick or extra thick slices.

Video recipe from my Instagram Reels (scroll down for written recipe):

Ingredients (for one “doughnut”):

  • 2 slices white bread
  • 1 medium egg
  • 2-3 heaped teaspoons of thick set custard
  • a generous knob of butter for frying
  • caster sugar in a bowl to dust the “doughnut” once cooked

Method:

Cut the two slices of bread into two identical circles with a large cookie cutter (don’t throw away the off-cuts, dip them into the egg after you have finished making the “doughnut”, fry them in the butter and dust them in caster sugar – they will make delicious French Toast bites!).

Spread a generous amount of the crema pasticcera / thick set custard into the centre of one of the slices, cover with the second slice and squeeze the edges together with your fingers.

Dip into a lightly beaten egg and place into a non-stick pan with a generous knob of lightly sizzling butter (medium heat). Cook both sides until the egg has lightly browned, drain on a piece of kitchen paper and immediately dip into a a bowl of caster sugar, making sure both sides and all edges are coated in sugar.

Serve and eat immediately while it’s still warm 🙂

A 'cheat' custard doughnut made with slices of white bread, thick set custard and caster sugar. Image shows the doughnut as it has been cut in half. Image also shows Gloriously Good Food Logo.

Quick custard doughnut (cheat) | Custard Donut | Ciambella rapida alla crema pasticcera |

Gloriously Simple, Gloriously Good!

Sweet Focaccia | Focaccia Dolce

Focaccia Dolce | Sweet Focaccia - whole with slice showing

This is a delicious sweet focaccia recipe from the brilliant Italian Cucchiaio d’Argento blog. We have made this a few times and have found the recipe very easy to follow, with perfect results each time, so we wanted to share and translate it for those who can’t follow the original recipe in Italian.

This is not as sweet as a cake, but sweeter than a bread. It’s delicious as a breakfast cake/bread, on its own or spread with your favourite jam or spread (why not try it with our sweet cashew butter or our home-made nutella…coming soon!).

We have followed the recipe to the letter, aside from using plain flour to replace the 00 flour, and strong white bread flour to replace the manitoba flour, as these are more commonly available (and affordable) in the UK.

Sweet focaccia in its tin, just come out of the oven.

Ingredients – for the dough

  • 400g plain white flour
  • 100g strong white bread flour
  • 120g demerara sugar
  • 7g dried yeast
  • 200ml whole milk
  • 20ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 110-130ml water
  • 1tsp sea salt

Ingredients – for the crispy top

  • extra virgin olive oil (approximately 1tbsp plus additional for greasing)
  • approx. 1tbsp water
  • demerara sugar

Method

  1. Place the two flours, the sugar, yeast, oil and lukewarm milk into the bowl of a stand mixer.
  2. Start mixing on a low setting with a K beater, drizzling in the water in a thin stream as you do this.
  3. Once all the ingredients are mixed together, swap the K beater for a dough hook and mix it for approximately 15 minutes, adding the salt towards the end. The dough will be ready once it is smooth and elastic / bouncy.
  4. Transfer the dough into a clean bowl and cover with clingfilm.
  5. Leave it to rise until it has approximately doubled (around 2 hours). We tend to place it on a shelf in the airing cupboard, but any warm, non-draughty room will be fine.
  6. Line and grease (with extra virgin olive oil) a 24cm round cake tin (we find a springform cake tin works very well for this).
  7. Once the dough has risen, transfer it into the greased, lined tin.
  8. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C fan.
  9. Use your finger tips to create dips all over the surface and to help spread the dough evenly over the surface. We found this to be quite sticky, so you may not get perfect dips, but as long as the dough is spread reasonably evenly across the cake tin and the surface is a little rough/uneven, it will work.
  10. Whisk together 1tbsp of water and extra virgin olive oil (this will turn into a thick emulsion) and brush this over the focaccia dough surface.
  11. Sprinkle the surface with a generous amount of demerara sugar.
  12. Bake the sweet focaccia in the pre-heated oven for 30-40 minutes until the surface is looking golden and a little cracked.
  13. Leave to cool in the tin for approximately 15 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely, or serve warm!

This delicious sweet focaccia will keep for a few days in an airtight container, or wrapped in clingfilm and tin foil, but the crispy topping will lose its crispiness and will go more soft and sticky after the first day. It will still be delicious!

One slice of sweet focaccia

Sweet Focaccia | Focaccia Dolce | Gloriously Simple, Gloriously Good!

Sweet Cashew Butter

Sweet cashew butter in a glass jar, seen from the top on a spreading knife

If you love spreading nut butters onto your toast (or eating them by the spoonful!) as much as we do, you’ll love this velvety-smooth, creamy and indulgent sweet cashew butter!

It’s quick and simple to make and only requires a handful of ingredients, but you do need a good quality, powerful blender to get the smooth consistency. We use a Ninja Power Foodi Blender, using the ‘Power Nutri Cup’ and running it on the ‘Powermix’ setting twice. You can, of course, use other powerful blenders, so long as they can cope with thick consistency mixes and give you a smooth blend.

Ingredients (makes approx. 300g of sweet cashew butter):

  • 170g cashews
  • 130ml vegetable oil
  • 80g icing sugar (you can adjust the quantities if you like your cashew butter sweeter or less sweet)
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • generous pinch of fine sea salt

Method

Place all ingredients into your blender and mix until you obtain a smooth consistency.

Please note that this may generate quite a bit of heat so the resulting cashew butter may initially be warm and a little bit runny, but it will get thicker as it sets in the fridge.

Pour the cashew butter into a glass jar and store in the fridge.

Sweet Cashew Butter in a glass jar, pictured from the top

Sweet Cashew Butter | Gloriously Simple, Gloriously Good!