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There are many doughnuts in the world to love. But few are as plump and sugared, slight in weight, and brashly fragrant as the cardamom doughnuts from Bluebird Coffee Shop in the East Village. They're a baked doughnut, which makes them even more dangerously accessible.
You make the dough the night before, and it will seem impossibly wet -- the key to fluffy doughnuts. Even after watching Adam Baumgart, the pastry chef, make the doughnuts, I didn't trust my instincts and threw out the first batch, thinking it was all wrong. But another batch and 2:30 am later, I got it right. So don't do what I did, and you'll be just fine.
The next morning you do a little shaping and spritzing and dipping into chopped pistachios, and you are near the finish line.
Baking fiends knew Bluebird Coffee Shop, but it was such a tiny space that it never got too big for its britches. Earlier this week, Merrill wrote about their Cheese Biscuits. Baumgart was generous to share his excellent recipes, and while that is good news, the sad news is that Bluebird is changing ownership this Sunday and Baumgart is moving on. But tastes of the old Bluebird can live on in all of our kitchens.
Adapted from Adam Baumgart, Bluebird Coffee Shop
Makes 9 doughnuts and 9 doughnut holes
- 2 1/2 cups plus 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons plus 1 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
- 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 2 3/4 teaspoons ground cardamom
- 1 1/4 teaspoons active dry yeast
- 11 milliliters lukewarm water
- 2 large eggs
- 2 large egg yolks
- 95 milliliters whole milk
- 95 milliliters buttermilk
- 13 tablespoons unsalted Plugra or other high butterfat butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup pistachios, finely chopped (by hand, not in a food processor)
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter