Berliners and brownies

Some readers asked for recipes for the Berliners and brownies I made recently. Here they are:

Berliners 


Berliners are made using a sweet, rich dough similar to bread dough. This recipe makes up about 30 small, or 24 medium sized doughnuts.  I use raspberry jam and dust them with icing sugar.

4 cups plain/all purpose flour
3 teaspoons dry yeast
½ teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons castor sugar
1 ½ cups warm milk. I use buttermilk but whole milk is fine as well.
4 eggs
125 grams/4 ounces butter, melted

Vegetable oil for frying -  I use sunflower oil.

Place all ingredients in a bread machine (use the dough setting) or in a mixer with dough hooks. To make by hand, mix ingredients in a bowl and knead for 10 minutes.

When the dough is mixed and kneaded, it should be left to rise for about an hour. Once risen, turn the dough out into a floured board. Roll the dough out with a rolling pin to about 1 - 2 inches in height.  At this stage you can bag them up for the freezer. When you want to cook them, they must defrost completely, return to room temperature and rise again before cooking.


If you want to cook the Berliners straight away, allow the dough to rise again for about 45 minutes then heat up the oil to 180 C in a saucepan. The oil must be at the right temperature when you put the dough in because oil will soak into the dough if it's not hot enough.  If the temperature is at the correct temperature, the heat will seal the dough and the oil will cook the Berliners without becoming greasy and soggy.

Berliners will burn if they touch the bottom of the pan so use a saucepan with enough oil for the dough to float free of the base.  They'll be ready when they are golden brown, this should take about 2 - 3 minutes.  Use a slotted spoon or tongs to turn them half way through the process. Allow to cool slightly, inject warmed jam into the Berliner with a long nozzle (recycled) sauce bottle or cut a pocket in the side with a sharp knife and spoon it in. Dust with icing sugar or castor sugar.  They should be eaten the same day they're cooked.

Father's Day Brownies

These are good rich brownies, made better by using the very best cocoa you can find. I used Dutch cocoa and I undercooked them.

If there is a secret to good brownies, it is to undercook them. Cooking them so they look cooked - like cake, will give you dry brownies.  I cooked mine for 20 minutes and they were still squelchy when touched. However, they continue to cook when you take them out of the oven and when you cut them, they'll be moist, rich and delicious.  This is the recipe I used.

I hope you enjoy these sweet treats.


22 comments

  1. Oooh I may have to try your Berliner recipe. I remember one of my early lessons as a German student, eating these in class and watching the video of JFK at the Berlin Wall, and learning he actually called himself a jelly donut by saying "Ich bin ein Berliner" instead of simply "Ich bin Berliner."

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  2. The brownie recipe looks wonderful! Pinned for another day. I looked up Berliners after you posted them the other day since we just call them jelly donuts. Your name sounds so much more fancy. :)

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  3. Thanks for the brownie recipe and tips. I do tend to overcook things but will do the opposite. As you said it continues to cook once removed from the oven.
    Didn't know about Dutch cocoa but will have a look at Aldi. From what I was just reading it gives it a darker colour and more instense flavour.
    Kylie

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  4. Thanks Rhonda, especially for the Brownie Recipe, I always seem to over cook my Brownies😩Have a lovely day.
    Fi

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  5. I like the idea of using buttermilk in the Berliners.
    How much should I expect them to rise? I only have made yeasted donuts previously. I like the idea of freezing them in smaller batches too!

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    1. They will almost double in size before cooking and puff up a bit more when they hit the hot oil.

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  6. The Berliners look fabulous and I am going to try them this weekend. A friend gave me some Rosella Jam and I will try that with them. I notice that the dough is set to rise, I am new to making dough and am wondering what is the rising agent to achieve this?

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    1. Lucky you asked that questions, Bernie, because I didn't include the yeast. It's there now. I hope you enjoy them.

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  7. How wonderful your Berliners look floating in the pan, all beautifully risen and golden. Have a lovely day Rhonda :)

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  8. We are going camping this weekend in our old vintage van Rhonda, and those brownies look like the perfect sweet treat to bring along with us!

    xx

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  9. Oh Rhonda! Berliners - my husband's favourite (also he calls them jam donuts, I'm the German one here) and Brownies - my favourite!!!
    Will try out those recipes on the weekend, also I'm a bit scared of cooking Berliners. Will the hot oil spit a lot? How do I know when it's the right temperature? Thanks for sharing!

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    1. The oil shouldn't spit at all. I use a dairy thermometer to check the temp.

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  10. Hi Rhonda, thank you for sharing these lovely recipes. Just wondering do you roll the Berliner dough into balls or cut it with a cutter like you do for scones? And roughly what size do you cut/roll them? Many thanks, Kelly

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    1. Hi Kelly, I cut them like scones. There's a photo of that in my previous post.

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  11. Thanks for the recipes Rhonda and everyone's comments have been very interesting as well. I am going to channel my part German heritage and try the Berliners although I don't do much deep frying. From what you say above I can use my cheese making and yoghurt making thermometer so that's great. Best wishes, Pauline

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  12. Dear Rhonda, thank you very much for the recipes. I enjoy your blog immensely. I have a question regarding the Berliner recipe: I thought that 125 g of butter convert to 4 ounces of butter and not 8? Have a lovely day, Sandra

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    1. Oh dear Sandra. I didn't do well with this recipe. Yes, it's 4 ounces. I'll change it now. thank you.

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  13. A friend makes Berliners and they are absolutely delicious. Using a sauce bottle to add the jam is an excellent idea. The best idea we had come up with was a syringe but it is very fiddly. Either way, warming the jam makes the job much easier. When the Berliners are sliced open and the jam is spread inside, my children call them Jamburgers!

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  14. That Berliner recipe looks wonderful, Ronda. I remember my mum made them (not often!) when I was a child. I loved them. Any jam doughnut is a hit with me!

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  15. It sounds like a lot of people are going to be making your Berliners. I love brownies. Thank you for the tip on under cooking them. I love chewy brownies. They are perfect for children. I bet your grandsons love visiting you. You are such a good cook and baker.

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  16. Hello Rhonda, I enjoy reading your blog posts and this is the first time I have commented! I just made the brownies, and although I seemed to have overcooked them (22 min on top shelf of oven), they are delicious nonetheless! The recipe was so simple I'll have another go soon. Have a lovely weekend.

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    1. That's great, Priscilla. They are delicious. I'm glad you baked them.

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