The first thing you will notice with the recipe is its “rustic” look. I say that because the doughnuts do not come out perfectly even, but you shouldn’t expect it to with all the chopped apples. That brings me to another thing—I made the batch of these doughnuts with some golden delicious apples.
Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line bake sheet with parchment. Place water, yeast, salt, eggs, sugar, apples, flour, and butter in a bowl, using a spoon or a sturdy spatula fold batter until evenly mixed.
Let the dough rest at room temperature covered, for two hours. Transfer dough to refrigerator and chill for at least 3 hours. Remove dough from refrigerator.
Transfer dough to a pastry bag fitted with a round tip and pipe 3-inch circles on to a parchment lined bake sheet (or alternately pipe into wells of a donut pan). Bake at 350 degrees for about 18 minutes. Remove from oven and transfer doughnuts to cooling rack.
To make glaze: Place confectioner sugar in bowl and add one tablespoon of milk at a time and stir after each addition. Add more mik as needed to achieve a glazing pour. Place finished glaze in a bowl and dip tops of doughnuts into mixture. Return dip doughnuts to cooling rack.
Carmel Drizzle: Place sugar and water into a saucepan over medium low heat and stir the until sugar has dissolved. Dissolve any crystals forming on the side with a wet pastry brush. Once sugar has dissolved increase heat to high.
At this point do not stir the mixture directly. Now and then, using the handle, give the pot a swirl to keep the mixture moving. The mixture will start to bubble after a minute or so.
After 3-4 minutes the mixture will turn from a light amber to medium amber and then finally to a dark reddish brown color. Once the mixture starts to smoke, add the butter and heavy cream. The mixture will bubble wildly. Whisk to combine (bubbles will subside upon cooling). Set aside to cool completely.
Note: The longer the caramel cooks the harder it will become as it cools. If after cooling the caramel is too hard, re-heat it and add more water, milk or heavy cream to thin it. If after cooling the caramel is too liquid-y, make a second batch and cook the caramel slightly longer, then mix the two together.
For a deeper caramel flavor add your butter and cream after the mixture has smoked for about 30 seconds.
Place finished glaze in a bowl and dip tops of doughnuts into mixture. Return dip doughnuts to cooling rack. Transfer caramel to plastic ziplock bag and cut off one corner. Drizzle caramel on top of glazed doughnut.