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Farmyard Animal Doughnuts Recipe

Yup, they’re cute but don’t think these cow, pig and chick pastries look too sweet to eat! Kim-Joy proves step-by-step directions on how to create these delectable treats!

| October 2019


These doughnuts are clucking adorable and udderly amazing! In fact, you will want to hog them all yourself!

Makes: About 7 ring doughnuts and 7 round doughnuts


  • 375g (2 2/3 cups) strong white (bread) flour
  • 40g (3 1/4 Tbsp) caster or granulated sugar
  • 8g (1/2 Tbsp) salt
  • 10g (1/3 oz) fast-action dried (active dry) yeast
  • grated zest of 1/2 lemon or 1/2 orange (optional)
  • 60ml (1/4 cup) water
  • 55ml (3 2/3 Tbsp) whole milk
  • 3 large eggs
  • 80g (1/3 cup) unsalted butter, at room temperature


  • 200g (1 1/2 cups) icing (confectioners’) sugar
  • 30-40ml (2 2/3 Tbsp) lemon juice


  • jam, chocolate spread, ganache (see below), or curd (see below)


  • oil, for deep-frying
  • caster or granulated sugar, for dusting if not going to decorate the doughnuts
  • black, yellow and orange food dyes
  • pink gel food dye
  • about 100g (3 1/2 oz) marzipan
  • your choice of favourite cookies 



  1. If working by hand, add the flour, sugar, salt, yeast and grated zest, if using, to a large bowl and stir together for a few seconds to distribute the ingredients evenly.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk the water, milk and eggs together. Add the liquid ingredients to the dry, and use a spoon to combine until you achieve a rough dough. Tip the dough out onto a work surface and knead until smooth and elastic.
  3. Gradually add the butter (40g (3 Tbsp) at a time) and knead in. The dough may stick to the work surface, but it is important to avoid adding any extra flour. Use a dough scraper to clean the work surface as you go along.
  4. If you have a bread machine or stand mixer fitted with a dough hook, simply add all the dry ingredients, stir, then add all the wet ingredients, except the butter. Let the machine knead the dough until smooth and elastic, about 7 minutes, then add the butter and let the machine knead this in for a further 5 minutes.
  5. Place the ball of dough into a lightly oiled large bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Leave to rise until doubled in size. This might take around 2-3 hours at room temperature. You can speed up the rise by placing the covered dough in the oven preheated to a very low temperature (about 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit)).
  6. When the dough has risen, knock it back and then roll out on a lightly floured surface until about 8mm (1/3 -in) thick. The dough will keep trying to shrink back every time you roll it out, so allow it to relax and shrink back a little, and then roll it out again to get the desired thickness. Make sure the dough is relaxed and not still shrinking back before you start to stamp out the doughnut shapes. This will help you to get even and round shapes. If the dough is still trying to shrink back, then the doughnuts will look misshapen.
  7. Stamp out 7 circles (I use an 8.5-cm (3 1/2 -in) diameter cutter) and carefully transfer each of these to an individual square of baking paper. Once transferred, you can then cut out the centres (I use a 4-cm (1 1/2 -in) diameter cutter). Removing the centres after transferring to baking paper helps to make sure that each ring doughnut is even in size and shape.
  8. Divide the remaining dough into 7 x 50-g (1 3/4 oz) pieces. Shape each of these into a smooth ball and try to create a smooth, taut surface so that oil does not get into cracks later and that they puff up evenly in the oil. Press down slightly on each doughnut to flatten. Place each doughnut on a square of baking paper. Loosely cover the doughnuts with lightly oiled plastic wrap.
  9. Leave to rise for about 1-2 hours (depending on room temperature) until doubled in size.
  10. Heat enough oil for deep-frying in a large, deep, heavy-based saucepan to 180-185 degrees Celsius (356-365 degrees Fahrenheit) and try to maintain this temperature while frying the doughnuts. Fry about 3 doughnuts at a time, carefully lowering them into the oil along with the baking paper underneath (this helps the doughnuts to keep their shape and not deflate during transfer). Use tongs or a similar utensil to remove the baking paper from the oil as quickly as possible. Fry the ring doughnuts for 45 seconds per side, and fry the round doughnuts for 1 minute 40 seconds per side.
  11. When the doughnuts have been fried on both sides, remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. After the oil has been soaked up, you can coat these in caster sugar straightaway (they are irresistible when still warm from the pan), or you can decorate them as animals and fill the round doughnuts with your choice of filling!
  12. When the doughnuts have cooled, use a knife to poke a hole in the visible white ring of the round doughnuts. Fill a piping bag with your desired doughnut filling, then pipe this into the hole. You can weigh the doughnuts before and after if you want to know how much filling you are putting in each.


To Decorate:

  • Make the glaze by whisking the icing sugar and lemon juice together in a bowl until smooth, then follow the instructions for the animal designs below.

Cow Doughnuts:

  1. Put a quarter of the glaze in a separate bowl and add a little icing sugar until it is pipeable. Mix with black food dye and then transfer to a piping bag. Cut a small tip.
  2. Dip round doughnuts (no hole) into the white glaze until evenly covered. Use a finger to smooth the icing that tries to drip down the side. Leave for a few minutes to semi-set.
  3. Use the black icing to pipe on black markings of a cow, leaving space for the face in the middle.
  4. Knead a tiny amount of pink gel food dye into marzipan to colour, and then use your fingers to shape the marzipan into the cow’s nose and ears. Place these features on the doughnuts.
  5. Finish by using the black icing to pipe the cow’s eyes, nostril details and mouth.

Pig Doughnuts:

  1. Keep the majority of the glaze for dipping, but place a small amount in a separate bowl and add black food dye. Mix in a little extra icing sugar until it is pipeable. Transfer to a piping bag ready for later.
  2. Add a tiny amount of pink gel food dye to the majority of the glaze and then dip ring doughnuts into it until evenly covered. Use a finger to smooth the icing that tries to drip down the side. Leave for a few minutes to semi-set.
  3. Knead a tiny amount of pink gel food dye into marzipan to colour, and then use your fingers to shape the marzipan into the pig’s nose and ears. Position these on the doughnut.
  4. Use the black icing to pipe the pig’s eyes and nostril details.
  5. Pipe darker pink icing to detail the pig’s tail, then position your favourite (half-eaten) cookie over the doughnut hole to look as if the pig is eating it.
  6. Make 2 small round balls out of the marzipan, and position to look like the pig is holding the cookie.

Chick Doughnuts:

  1. Keep the majority of the glaze for dipping, but place a small amount in 3 separate bowls. Add yellow food dye to the main glaze and mix in.
  2. Add orange food dye to one of the small bowls, black to another and pink to the last one. Mix in a little extra icing sugar until they are pipeable. Transfer these to piping bags ready for later.
  3. Dip ring doughnuts into the yellow glaze until evenly covered. Use a finger to smooth the icing that tries to drip down the side. Leave for a few minutes to semi-set.
  4. Pipe the orange icing to detail the feet and nose. Add the eyes using the black icing. Add little pink lines under the eyes.
  5. Position your favourite (half-eaten) cookie over the doughnut hole to look as if the chick is eating it.
  6. Add a little icing sugar to the main dipping glaze until it is pipeable. Transfer to a piping bag and use to pipe the wings to look like the chick is holding the cookie.


Dark Chocolate Ganache

Makes: Enough to fill about 20 mararons


  • 80g (2 3/4 oz) dark chocolate (at least 70 percent cocoa solids)
  • 80ml (1/3 cup) double (heavy) cream
  • 20g (2 1/4 Tbsp) icing (confectioners’) sugar, or to taste (optional, as this depends on the sweetness of your dark chocolate)


  1. Chop the chocolate into small, roughly equal pieces, then add to a bowl.
  2. Pour the cream or coconut milk into a pan and bring to a simmer over a medium-high heat. When it starts to bubble, pour it on top of the chocolate. Make sure the cream covers all the chocolate pieces and leave for 3 minutes.
  3. After 3 minutes, stir to combine all the cream or coconut milk and chocolate. The chocolate should be completely melted by now. If not, pour it back into a pan and gently heat until the chocolate has melted. Stir in the sugar, if using.
  4. Add the mixture to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap and set aside until cooled to room temperature. Whisk until lightened in colour and the right thickness for filling your macarons. While whisking, add any desired flavouring (see above). The ganache will take a little while to thicken, but it will reach a point and suddenly start to thicken quite quickly, so avoid overwhipping, as it will become too difficult to pipe. Transfer to a piping bag and use to fill your macarons.

Orange Curd for Macarons

Makes: Enough to fill about 20 mararons


  • 2 egg yolks
  • grated zest and juice of 1 large orange (about 100ml (7 Tbsp))
  • 100g (1/2 cup) caster or granulated sugar
  • 60g (1/4 cup) unsalted butter


  1. Add the egg yolks, orange zest and juice, sugar and butter to a heatproof bowl and stir with a balloon whisk until combined.
  2. Set up a bain-marie with a pan of hot water on the stove, and the heatproof bowl fitting on top but without directly touching the water.
  3. Whisk constantly for 10-15 minutes until the mixture has thickened (you will notice the foam start to disappear) and holds a trail.
  4. Pour the curd into a bowl, cover with plastic wrap (touching the surface to avoid forming a skin) and chill in the fridge before using to fill your macarons. You can strain the curd before transferring to a bowl if you have any bits of cooked egg, or if you prefer not to have the zest.

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