Umeboshi Cream Cheese Doughnuts

Pat Breen & Lydia Wegner of Shop Ramen
Pat Breen & Lydia Wegner of Shop Ramen
24th of June 2014
OH NO, it's time to say goodbye to Pat and Lydia of Shop Ramen!  How sad.  For their final instalment, Pat and Lydia share a current favourite dessert creation, Umeboshi Cream Cheese Doughnuts! Combining sugary, deep fried dough with the salty sourness of Japanese pickled plums and cream cheese filling, this is one of those unexpectedly perfect flavour combinations (you know, a bit like chocolate and chilli, or salted caramel!) - a guaranteed crowd pleaser!  - Lucy
Umeboshi Cream Cheese Doughnuts served with one of Shop Ramen's famous Caramel Milk Shakes. Photo - Sean Fennessy. Styling - Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.
Aside from our ramen and rice dishes, at Shop Ramen we also love dessert.  Combining sugary, deep fried dough with the salty sourness of Japanese pickled plums, we're pretty pleased with these Umeboshi Cream Cheese Doughnuts. We’ve experimented with a few doughnut recipes, and this one’s a cracker. With an appearance almost like a cross between a plum and an apricot, Umeboshi plums have an intense sweet and salty flavour that carries really beautifully in this recipe.  These are more of ‘bismark’ style of doughnut, which basically means you are frying one piece of dough, and piping it with delicious filling. The overnight prep is essential in for the super soft but chewy texture!

Ingredients (Makes approximately 18)

For the doughnut dough 500g strong white flour 70g caster sugar + extra for coating doughnuts (200g) 1tsp salt 15g fresh yeast 4 large eggs 150ml water 125g room temperate unsalted butter 4L sunflower oil for frying For the Umeboshi Plum cream cheese filling 200g cream cheese 300g cream 4 fresh plums cut into cubes 4 Umeboshi Plums (we used spiral foods organic) 180g caster sugar ShopRamenFINALS-9
Pat prepping plums for the doughnut filling. Photo - Sean Fennessy. Styling - Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.


Making the dough Place all ingredients except the butter and the oil into an electric mixer with a dough hook attachment (if you have one). Mix on medium speed for eight minutes until ingredients are well incorporated, glossy and come away from the side of the bowl.  For those without a mixer, just knead the ingredients together as best you can until the mixture becomes smooth and glossy - it might take some elbow grease! Making sure it is really soft, add the butter one tablespoon at a time, slowly. Let the butter incorporate into the dough before adding more. Once all the butter is added, turn up the mixer to high for a further two minutes to make sure the butter is properly combined. Now that the dough is made, place it in a bowl, cover it with plastic wrap and put into the freezer for 30 minutes to chill – this will stop the yeast overproving. When your 30 minutes is up, put the dough into the fridge over night. Shaping the dough Now that the dough has rested for about 12 hours (overnight) we are ready to shape the dough into doughnuts. It's much easier to shape them when they are cold and I find putting some oil on the hands stops them from sticking. Cut the doughnuts into 25g pieces and shape with the hands into small smooth balls. Place the dough onto baking paper (5cm apart) and set aside to prove and cover with plastic wrap. Depending on the temperature, this can take between 1.5 - 2.5 hours, you want to see them almost double in size. Frying the dough Using a candy thermometer, heat the oil in a heavy based saucepan to 170C. It’s also important to maintain the temperature throughout frying, so check the temperature after each batch. This will ensure you get perfectly cooked doughnuts. Start frying the doughnuts in batches of four, two minutes on each side. Once cooked, place doughnuts onto paper towel to soak up any excess oil, then toss in caster sugar. ShopRamenFINALS-10
Lydia of Shop Ramen adding the cream cheese filling.  Photo - Sean Fennessy. Styling - Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.
Making the filling There are a few steps in making the filling but first let's make a plum sauce. Place fresh cut plums and umeboshi plums (all pips removed), two tablespoons of sugar and two tablespoons of water into a pot and cook on medium heat for 15 minutes until the plums break down. Set aside and let cool. In a standing mixer with a paddle attachment whip cream into soft peaks. Set aside in separate bowl. In the mixing bowl add cream cheese and sugar and whip in stand mixer for three minutes. Add the plum sauce, and whip for another two minutes, then add the cream to finish. Whip everything until just combined. Fill a piping bag with the cream cheese mix ready to fill your doughnuts. Before we eat them, we must fill the doughnuts with the plum filling! With a knife cut a small hole down into the top of the doughnut. With the piping bag filled, push the nozzle down into the hole and fill. ShopRamenFINALS-19
The team tucking into the doughnuts. Photo - Sean Fennessy. Styling - Lucy Feagins / The Design Files.

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