These sourdough donuts from Baking Sense were outstanding. I iced them with a simple vanilla glaze and dipped them in the most fantastic candied sesame seeds. The end result tasted like a donut meeting a dim sum sesame ball.
Sourdough Donuts: Mix the dough up the day before (it takes most of the day) , cut and let rise for about 2 hours the next morning before frying. Recipe in link below. I substituted 1/2 tsp nutmeg for the 1 tsp cardamom because I feel like donuts have to have nutmeg.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a large skillet over medium high heat, combine water and sugar. When the sugar dissolves and it starts to boil, pour in sesame seeds. Stir with a heatproof spatula constantly for about 8 minutes, until the liquid evaporates and the sesame seeds are completely dry and crisp. They should just barely start to brown. Pour out onto parchment lined baking sheet, break up larger clumps of seeds and let cool.
Let donuts cool for a couple minutes before dipping in vanilla glaze, then immediately in cooled sesame seeds.
Make crust: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Pulse flour, salt, butter, and lard in food processor until butter and lard are the size of peas. Transfer mixture to a medium bowl. Add ice water and stir with a fork until incorporated. Turn out onto work surface and work dough together until it forms a ball. Roll out between sheets of wax paper.
Line a 9-inch pie plate with dough, prick with a fork and freeze for at least 15 minutes.
Partially Bake Pie Crust: Line the frozen pie dough with foil, fill with dried beans, rice or pie weights. Bake for 15 minutes. Let cool and remove foil.
Make Raspberry Filling: Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook for 5-10 minutes, breaking down raspberries with a spoon if necessary. Pour into a fine mesh strainer and press through to remove raspberry seeds. Reserve about 2 tablespoons of strained filling (no seeds) for decorating on top if desired. Then, if desired, add back in about 2 tablespoons of seeds to the rest of the raspberry filling for texture. Chill until ready to use.
Make Chess Filling: Combine sugar, cream, butter, eggs, egg yolks, cornmeal, lemon zest and lemon juice and cornstarch in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until thick, about 7 minutes. Whisk in vanilla.
Spread chilled raspberry filling in the prepared pie shell. Pour thickened chess pie filling over raspberry. Bake for 35-45 minutes, until the filling has set in the center and is just starting to brown.
Let pie cool completely.
For Plaid Design: Cut several 2″ strips of paper. Place paper on chilled pie, leaving 2″ between strips. Dust with powdered sugar. Remove strips. Place paper strips across the pie perpendicular to the white stripes. Combine equal weights of powdered sugar and powdered freeze dried raspberries (pulverized in blender or food processor). Sift over pie to create the pink stripes. Dust the sugar off of the exposed pie crust with a pastry brush. Place reserved raspberry filling in a piping bag with a small round tip. Pipe one raspberry stripe along the side of every pink stripe and two raspberry stripes along the side of every white stripes. Chill until ready to serve.
Combine blackberries, sugar and lemon juice in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer, crushing blackberries with a fork or spoon as they start releasing their juices. Cook for 15 minutes, until thick. The mixture will thicken as it cools. Strain using a mesh strainer to remove most of the seeds. I like to add 1 TBSP of the seeds back into the smooth mixture and discard the rest. Refrigerate.
Line 3 baking sheets with silicon mats (preferred) or parchment. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Fit a large pastry bag with a 1/2 inch round tip.
Whisk the almond flour and powdered sugar to combine. Press through a fine mesh strainer, into a large bowl, using your fingers or a rubber spatula to work it through.
Place 75 ml of egg whites in the bowl of a standing mixer. Put the other 75 ml into the bowl of almond flour and stir with a rubber spatula until it is a smooth, thick paste. Let sit.
In a small saucepan, combine water and granulated sugar and bring to a boil over medium heat. Swirl pan gently to dissolve the sugar. Insert a candy thermometer and cook until syrup reaches 245 degrees. Meanwhile, whip egg whites in stand mixer on medium speed until they reach medium peaks. When the syrup has reached temperature, pour it slowly down the side of the stand mixer bowl while mixer is running. Once all syrup has been incorporated, increase mixer to high and beat until the meringue is stiff and has cooled to lukewarm, about 10 minutes.
Add the cooled meringue to the almond flour mixture and fold with a rubber spatula until the mixture is smooth and flows off the spatula easily. Mix in the fresh mint until well combined.
Fill pastry bag with half the mixture and pipe onto prepared baking sheets in 2″ rounds, leaving space between them as they will spread. Once the cookie sheet is full, drop it onto the counter from about 12″ high to get rid of any air bubbles in the batter. Continue piping rounds until all the mixture is used.
Set the cookie sheets aside until the macaron batter dries and forms a skin – when pressed lightly with a fingertip the batter will be dry, not tacky.
When the macarons are dry, bake one sheet at a time for 12 minutes, rotating pan at 6 minutes, until they are firm but are still pale.
Let cool completely before peeling off and matching.
Place all cream cheese filling ingredients into the bowl of a food processor and blend until smooth, scraping bowl if necessary. Do not over-whip.
Fit pastry bag with a 1/2 inch round tip and fill with frosting.
Match macaron shells
Stir 1 TBSP fresh mint into cooled blackberry jam.
Pipe a ring of cream cheese filling around the base of one macaron shell. Fill the center generously with blackberry mint jam. Top with second macaron shell, pressing down gently to seal. Repeat.
Place sandwiched macarons in an airtight container, or wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 24 hours before serving.