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Mom’s Ricotta Doughnuts

Mom’s Ricotta Doughnuts

I was about seven when my mother got herself a Fry Daddy. I remember standing on the red kitchen stool and watching her take it out of the box. She winked at me and whispered, “You know what this makes? French fries.” My goodness my mother was holding the mothership of making French fries and I was able to see it at its unveiling. This is HUGE when you are seven-years-old.

Well … when we moved to the ranch the Fry Daddy was replaced with a commercial fryer and Mom just didn’t make French fries anymore; though what came out of that fryer was amazing. One our favorites was rarely served … we had to be good all week to get it on Sunday evenings for dessert … were the doughnuts. My mother’s original recipe was for two adults and four small children who would listen to their mother when she said everyone could only have three doughnuts. As we grew older she started to double the recipe. Myself, I have tripled the recipe and I bring them to pot-luck brunches as well as cookie exchanges, or just bring them out piping-hot after an evening’s barbecued meal. The recipe I posted is the larger version.

My mother always used manteca, also known as lard; mainly because it was pretty much shelf-stable also had a low-smoke ratio, and since her kitchen had white walls this was very important. I have a few friends who are allergic to four-legged creature’s fat/meat and because of this I usually fry them in equal parts vegetable and olive oil.

My mother mainly sprinkled them with powdered sugar; every once in a while she would roll them in cinnamon and sugar

Mom's Ricotta Doughnuts

October 4, 2017
: 8 to 10
: 20 min
: 1 hr
: 1 hr 20 min
: 3/4 glass of wine


  • 1 32 oz. container of ricotta
  • 9 eggs
  • ¾ cup of sugar
  • 3 cups of all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup of baking powder
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 3 cups of olive oil
  • 3 cups of vegetable oil
  • For topping:
  • Powdered sugar
  • or
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • Step 1 Put oil in large frying pot … I have an antique cast iron one I use. The key is to make sure the oil is deep enough so the doughnuts have room to rise.
  • Step 2 Heat oil to 375 degrees.
  • Step 3 In a large bowl mix eggs, sugar, flour, cheese, baking powder, and salt until there are no more lumps.
  • Step 4 Using two soup spoons, one to scoop about a tablespoon’s worth of dough and the other to scrape it into the hot oil. I usually drop about five at a time.
  • Step 5 This is when you need to have a set of tongs handy … the doughnuts will sink to the bottom of the fryer. When they start floating up to the top they are halfway done. You need to flip them over so they cook on both sides evenly. I do this about three times per doughnut in the two to four minutes it takes them to cook.
  • Step 6 When frying the dough … put your toppings in a small bowl and mix.*
  • Step 7 I usually place a cookie sheet lined with paper towels somewhat near (but not too close to the flame) the fryer.
  • Step 8 Then I put the topping bowl next to the cookie sheet, and then the serving dish right next to the topping bowl.
  • Step 9 When the doughnuts are a nice dark brown remove from oil and put on the towel-covered cookie sheet.
  • Step 10 While those are cooling drop your next batch into the fryer.
  • Step 11 When your next batch is halfway done, it’s now time to roll the ones on the cookie sheet in the cinnamon-sugar mix. Then place on serving sheet.
  • Step 12 The more you fry you will notice the oil will be getting lower in the pot, be a bit more vigilant in turning the doughnuts over since they may burn on the bottom of the pot.
  • Step 13 *If you are doing powdered sugar you need the doughnuts to cool for a little longer, since it will melt.

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