By Dennis Prescott
Updated December 17, 2014
© Dennis Prescott

When it comes to Hanukkah food, latkes get most of the love around this time of year. But jelly doughnuts, or sufganiyot, are another delicious holiday tradition. So this year, spend time with your loved ones, raise a glass and enjoy a doughnut or six.

Happy Hanukkah!

Lemon Amaretto Sufganiyot

Makes 14 - 16

  • 2 tablespoons dry active yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 4 teaspoon water
  • 5 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon amaretto
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest
  • 4 tablespoons butter, at room temperature, cut into 8 pieces
  • Canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar for dusting
  • 2 cups strawberry jam

In a small bowl, combine yeast, 1 teaspoon of sugar and water. Stir and allow the yeast to activate (about 10 minutes).

Using a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, combine flour, yeast, sugar, salt, vanilla, eggs, amaretto and lemon zest. Knead on low for about 5 minutes until the dough starts to come together. Make sure all the dough is incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl if necessary. Add butter 1 piece at a time, allowing each piece to incorporate into the dough before adding the next. Increase the speed to medium and knead for an additional 6 - 8 minutes. If the dough is too wet, add an additional 1/4 cup of flour.

Lightly oil a large bowl, place dough in and cover with cling wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

The next day, remove dough from fridge and let it rest on a floured surface. Roll the dough out into a 3/4-inch-thick rectangle. Using a 3 1/2-inch cutter (or a large drinking glass in a pinch), cut the doughnuts. Place cut doughnuts on a baking tray, lined with parchment paper and lightly floured, leaving a few inches between each doughnut. Cover with cling wrap, and allow the doughnuts to proof for 2 hours or until doubled in size.

Place 1 1/2 cups of sugar in a medium bowl and set aside.

Using a candy thermometer, heat 3 inches of canola oil in a deep pot to 350°. Working in batches, fry doughnuts, 2 minutes per side, until golden brown. Carefully remove from the hot oil and toss each doughnut in sugar until evenly coated. Cool on a rack for 30 minutes.

Using a butter knife, poke a small hole in the middle of each doughnut. Fill a piping bag with jam and pipe about 1 tablespoon of jam into each doughnut.