Mochi Bread Doughnuts With Salted Honey & Cardamom

June 11, 2021
3 Ratings
Photo by Mandy Lee
  • Prep time 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Cook time 15 minutes
  • makes 15 doughnuts
Author Notes

If you are a fan of those Asian white breads that are stringy, soft, airy, and chewy at the same time, look no further than this "mother dough" that I call mochi bread dough. No, the bread doesn't taste or feel like mochi, but the dough starts with a roux-like mixture that's entirely made of sticky rice flour, the main ingredient in mochi. This technique of heated flour and water, typically used with wheat flour, is a common Japanese method (known as yudane), which makes white bread that is soft and retains moisture longer than bread made with other styles of dough mixing. By substituting sticky rice flour for wheat flour in the roux, I get an even softer and chewier bread that is the foundation for multiple recipes in my cookbook.

Take these mochi bread doughnuts, for example. Airy and light, yet slightly chewy, they’re a perfect pillow to cradle any of your fancy doughnut dreams. Mine involves a coating of dark floral honey, generously salted to counterbalance the sweetness, and dusted with a hint of spiciness from ground cardamom and cinnamon. I'd urge you to eat all the doughnuts while they are warm, but something tells me that I don’t have to worry about making sure they’re finished quickly.

Note on mochi bread dough: If you prefer a softer doughnut, you can use only all-purpose flour.

Note on green cardamom: You probably won’t be able to find ground green cardamom for purchase. Grind whole green cardamom pods in a spice grinder until finely ground (you’ll need about 10 cardamom pods’ worth for the grinder to work).

Recipe adapted with permission from The Art of Escapism Cooking: A Survival Story, with Intensely Good Flavors by Mandy Lee, published by William Morrow Cookbooks. Copyright © 2019 by Mandy Lee. Reprinted courtesy of HarperCollins Publishers.Mandy @ Lady and pups

What You'll Need
Watch This Recipe
Mochi Bread Doughnuts With Salted Honey & Cardamom
  • Mochi Bread Dough
  • 1 cup (117 grams) sticky rice flour (sometimes called glutinous rice flour or mochiko flour)
  • 1 cup (235 grams) boiling water
  • 1 1/2 cups (200 grams) bread flour
  • 1 1/2 cups (190 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg, plus 1 yolk
  • 3 tablespoons (46 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons instant dry yeast (if your kitchen is warmer than 78°F/26°C, use ¾ teaspoon)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon (13 grams) unsalted butter
  • Doughnut Assembly
  • All-purpose flour, for dusting
  • 1/4 cup (60 milliliters) honey
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground green cardamom (see Author Notes)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Canola oil, for frying
  1. Mochi Bread Dough
  2. Make the dough: In a stand-mixer bowl fitted with the dough hook, add the sticky rice flour and boiling water and start mixing on low speed, scraping the sides a couple times. It will appear lumpy at first, then eventually it becomes a batter of sticky, shiny goo. When it does, turn off the heat and let it cool completely (I stick it in the freezer, covered, for 15 minutes).
  3. Then add the bread flour, all-purpose flour, egg and egg yolk, sugar, yeast, and salt. Knead on low speed until the mixture comes together into a sticky dough (the dough may seem dry at first, but do not add water). Add the butter, scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl to help the butter incorporate evenly, and knead for 7 to 8 minutes, until the dough is extremely smooth and elastic. The dough should be sticky, but only sticking to the bottom of the bowl as the machine is running, leaving a thin opaque film on the sides of the bowl. If it’s too wet—sticking everywhere as the machine is running—add 1 tablespoon of bread flour at a time and knead again until it looks right.
  4. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise at room temperature until doubled, 2 to 3 hours. Alternatively, let it rise in the refrigerator overnight, or up to 24 hours. If your kitchen is very warm (above 86°F/30°C), I recommend letting the dough sit in the freezer, covered, for 1 hour before transferring to the refrigerator.
  1. Doughnut Assembly
  2. Shape the doughnuts: Once the dough is ready, transfer to a working surface dusted with flour and knead/punch out all the large air bubbles, then roll the dough into a large sheet about ⅜ inch (1 centimeter) thick. Use a 4-inch (10-centimeter) doughnut cutter to cut out doughnuts. You can do it with or without doughnut holes.
  3. Cut out a 5-inch (13-centimeter) square of parchment paper for each doughnut. Transfer the doughnuts onto the squares, set them aside on large sheet pans, and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Let them rise again until doubled (this will mostly show in thickness instead of width), 1½ to 2 hours.
  4. Make the glaze and topping: Meanwhile, combine the honey, butter, and sea salt in a small saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture has come to a simmer and the butter is melted. Set aside to let cool to room temperature and thicken, stirring a couple times to ensure evenness.
  5. Mix the cardamom and cinnamon in a small bowl and set aside.
  6. Fry the doughnuts: When the doughnuts are proofed, add 1½ inches (4 centimeters) of canola oil to a deep frying pan. Heat over medium-high heat until the oil reaches 300°F/150°C. Lift one parchment paper with a doughnut on it and gently lower it into the frying oil (including the parchment). Use a fork or chopstick to press the parchment paper down so the hot oil can flood the bottom of the doughnut, which will release it from the parchment. When the parchment is free, remove it with tongs. Fry until one side of the doughnut is golden brown, about 1 minute, then flip and fry until the other side is golden brown, about 1 minute more. If it takes way longer or shorter than 1 minute for each side of the doughnut to brown, the oil is either too hot or too cold; adjust accordingly. Drain well and set aside on a cooling rack. Repeat to make the rest of the doughnuts.
  7. To serve: Drizzle the salted honey over the warm doughnuts and dust with the cardamom mixture (a little goes a long way). Enjoy immediately.

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1 Review

barinatsarina June 25, 2021
After the video was uploaded I knew I had to make these. I've been looking for a mochi donut recipe since having pon de ring donuts when I visited my family in California. I made this by hand since I don't have a mixer and it is doable! Just be patient when kneading in the flour. It will be dry and crumbly but eventually it will incorporate and you'll get a smooth sticky dough. I portioned off 500g to turn into a milk bread esque loaf and was able to make 5 donuts and holes with the rest, which is more than enough for me.